Bethany Webb, whose sister was killed and mother wounded in a mass shooting in Seal Beach, California in 2011, has not given up her crusade to end the death penalty in California. Webb, who has spent years representing DPF in seminars and panel discussions around the state, was part of a panel sponsored by the PEOPLE’S (People Enraged Over Prosecutors and Law Enforcement) Coalition in Orange County earlier this week.
Webb’s abolition crusade began with the trial of Scott Dekraai, the man accused of killing her sister and six others, and wounding her mother in the Seal Beach shooting. Over Webb’s and several other family members’ objections, Orange Country District Attorney Tony Rackauckas insisted on pursuing the death penalty against Dekraai. But because of the illegal use of jailhouse informants by the DA’s office and the sheriff’s department in the Dekraii case (as well as many other cases dating back years), the judge who presided over the trial took the death penalty off the table and sentenced Dekraai to eight consecutive life sentences. Webb’s six-year battle was over.
But as she made clear at this week’s event, she’s still fighting. The OC Weekly reports that at one point, Webb endorsed Brett Murdock, the Democrat running against Rackauckas in this year’s election, held up a picture of Rackauckas and described him as her “least-favorite person.”
And, the paper reports, Webb said, “The death penalty is saying that…the only way we can feel better, the only thing that we can do to make justice is to kill this person,” Webb said. “I reject that.”