Friedman testifies for (twice) convicted murderer

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Kinky Friedman’s foray into alternative marketing political campaign took an odd turn today, as Friedman testified in the sentencing phase of the trial of (twice) convicted murderer Max Soffar:

Prosecutor Lyn McClellan objected throughout the 10-minute testimony.

Kinky Friedman

McClellan said Friedman’s participation in the trial was nothing but a publicity stunt. He said Friedman did not offer any mitigating evidence to the trial that would explain to jurors Soffar’s behavior.

Friedman, who wrote to Soffar while he was on death row, has said he believes that Soffar is innocent and has been wrongly convicted.

“I said he had a higher innocence. He had an earned innocence, an achieved innocence like a guy who comes back from Iraq or Vietnam — from a war. He’s struggled with his demons and he’s conquered them,” Friedman said.

Once his political campaign flames out, Friedman should apply for a gig writing the Chron Eye For The Death Row Killer Guy!

Max Soffar and Kathryn Kase

As for Friedman’s qualifications to testify as a “character witness” for Soffar, here’s the AP story:

Friedman said he met Soffar while writing an article for Texas Monthly magazine. He interviewed Soffar and exchanged letters with him during his years on death row.

Although he used to support the death penalty, Friedman told jurors he’s now against it.

Perhaps the Chronicle reporting tomorrow will let us know whether Kathryn Kase, defense attorney and wife of Chronicle editor Jeff Cohen, wept over Friedman’s testimony.

ADDITIONAL COVERAGE: KHOU-11.

UPDATE (03-01-2006): Here is the Chronicle‘s coverage.


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Kevin Whited
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