Danny was looking for pen-pals a few years ago on the internet.
Hi, I am Danny! Nice to meet you! I am white, 26 years old, brown hair, blue eyes, 170 lbs., DOB 2-12-78. I’m currently on Death Row. I love to write. I am open-minded and can talk about anything.
I am looking for a pen pal, hopefully a strong friendship. If you are sincere about an everlasting friendship and writing and think you can keep up, if you are interested, please write to me.
Thank you for your time and consideration. I am looking forward in hearing from you. Much love and laughs.
Louisiana State Penitentiary
Angola, LA 70712
Now let’s see why Mr. ‘love and laughs’ is on death row.
Here is an account that is on the Louisiana Supreme Court’s website from his appeal on the death penalty.
In December 1996, the then 18-year-old defendant and his 17-year-old girlfriend, Kristee Kline, were living in a mobile home owned by Russ Rowland, a local building contractor. Because the defendant and Kline were unemployed, they had not paid their rent for two months and thus owed Rowland $500.00. In addition, they had numerous overdue bills and recently had their phone service disconnected. Faced with financial hardship, the defendant often talked about robbing and killing someone with a lot of money. Approximately three days before the instant offense, the defendant told Kline and friends Audy Keith and Jason Guin that he wanted to rob and kill Rowland. The defendant informed them that he planned to lure Rowland to the trailer, kill him, and dispose of the body in a nearby swamp.
On the morning of December 30, 1996, the defendant went to Rowland's office and asked Rowland to come to the trailer to collect the overdue rent. Rowland arrived shortly thereafter, but the defendant did not follow through with his plan and instead told Rowland that he had misplaced his checkbook and asked Rowland to come back that afternoon. Later that day, while driving home from a local Wal-Mart store with Kline, Keith and Guin, the defendant reiterated his need for money and his intent to rob and kill Rowland. The defendant stopped at a convenience store and called Rowland's office from a pay phone, leaving a message with Rowland's secretary that he "had what Russ needs," and that if Rowland would come by the trailer he would "take care of it."
At approximately 3:00 p.m., Rowland arrived at the trailer and ascended the steps to the front door. When he approached the open door, Keith fired one shot from the defendant's twelve-gauge shotgun, hitting Rowland in the abdomen. Rowland collapsed on the porch outside the front door and began screaming in pain. The defendant then took the shotgun from Keith and attempted to shoot Rowland again, but the gun malfunctioned and would not fire. The defendant then picked up his 30-30 rifle, pointed it at Rowland and, despite Rowland's repeated pleas that the defendant not shoot him, fired the rifle into Rowland's right eye, blowing away a large portion of his head. Thereafter, the defendant told Keith to search Rowland's truck for Rowland's wallet, which Keith found and turned over to the defendant. The defendant subsequently removed $141.00 from the wallet and hid the wallet and money under a couch cushion.
The defendant next asked Keith to help drag Rowland's body into the trailer, but Keith refused. Kline, who had hidden in the bedroom when Rowland approached the trailer, emerged and began cleaning up the blood on the carpet where the defendant had dragged Rowland's body down the hallway. Guin, who had seen Rowland's truck drive by and then heard two gunshots, came over to the trailer to see what had happened. Guin noticed that the front porch was wet and that there was a "big black mark like a trail" going down the hall. Guin also observed Kline on her knees scrubbing at the black mark. Guin asked where the defendant was and Keith pointed to the back of the trailer. Guin walked down the hall and saw Rowland's body on the floor. When the defendant asked Guin to help him move the body, Guin refused. The defendant then picked up the shotgun and began to load it. When the defendant turned toward Guin with the shotgun, Guin ran out the back door and into the wooded area behind the trailer. Guin eventually went to a neighbor's house and called 911 to report the murder.
During this time, one of the defendant's neighbors called 911 to report that she had heard two gunshots coming from the west of her trailer and that one shot had hit her mobile home. She also reported that she saw someone searching Rowland's white pickup truck, which was parked in front of the defendant's trailer. Two deputies responded to the call and searched her trailer for a bullet hole. The deputies eventually walked over to the defendant's trailer and observed that the front porch had recently been washed with a nearby garden hose that was still running. Upon closer inspection, the deputies discovered shotgun wadding, blood, tissue, and bone fragments on the ground near the porch. While trying to determine whether the blood, tissue and bone fragments were of human origin, the deputies received information from headquarters of Guin's report of a homicide at the defendant's trailer. Sheriff's investigators soon arrived and entered the unlocked back door of the trailer to see if anyone inside was injured. Once inside, they discovered Rowland's body, and later his wallet and the $141.00 in cash hidden under the couch cushion. In addition, deputies discovered Rowland's receipt book which contained a receipt made out to the defendant in the amount of $500.00.
Immediately after the shooting, Keith left the trailer and went to a neighbor's house where he stayed until his parents delivered him to the authorities later that evening. In addition, the defendant and Kline left the trailer in Kline's car and drove to the office of a local bondsman, Steve Dement, and then to Dement's house. The defendant informed Dement that there was a dead body in his trailer and Dement instructed the defendant to "go back and check your house out . . . [because] there may not be anybody there." While driving back to the trailer, the defendant was spotted by a sheriff's deputy and taken into custody. The defendant informed the deputy that Kline was still at Dement's house and deputies arrested her without incident. In their several statements, Kline and the defendant maintained that Keith shot Rowland with both the shotgun and the rifle, but Keith maintained that the defendant pulled the trigger of the shotgun as Keith held it and then shot Rowland with the rifle.
On February 13, 1997, a Caddo Parish grand jury separately indicted the defendant and Keith with one count of first degree murder in violation of La. R.S. 14:30. Before the defendant's trial, Keith pled guilty to second degree murder and was sentenced to life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence. Keith eventually turned state's witness and testified at the defendant's trial that he had indeed fired the first shot, but that the defendant forced him to do so at gunpoint, and that the defendant then shot Rowland in the head with the rifle. The jury found the defendant guilty of first degree murder.
I know that my questions have all been through every court in the land, but legal or not, some things are just wrong.
- Why is he allowed to file a frivolous lawsuit such as the one seeking pornography?
- Why is he allowed use of the internet?
These are privileges and should not be considered basic rights. He had the right to due process, and received it. That included a mandated appeal of his sentence. Beyond that, we owe him nothing.
About the only right the Rowland family has left is to take flowers to the cemetery and place on the grave of their loved one.
This makes me sick.