Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Pervis T Payne

Petitioner Pervis T. Payne was sentenced to death in a Tennessee state court for the murderof Charisse Christopher and her daughter Lacie Christopher.

I went to school with Pervis. He did not do the crime. He did not commit murder.

The case against him is wrong. Please!!! Look at the facts!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I went to school with Pervis. I know Pervis....or knew Pervis.

First: Look at the time of day!!

The state wants you to believe that he raped this woman. And to cover up the rape, he stabbed her thirty times. And stabbed her daughter. And stabbed her young son. And he decided to do all of this in the middle of the afternoon in June of 1987.

The rape is key here according to the prosecution. This is the motive. Here's the problem. Her boyfriend told the prosecutors that he spent the night with the victim the night before the murders happened. He acknowledged that he had sex with her. The jury that convicted Pervis never heard this statement. It wasn't shared with Pervis' court appointed lawyer. Who, by the way, was defending his first capital murder case. But the fact that there may have been semen in the victims vagina was brought up.

And Pervis is alleged to have done this at or about 2 in the afternoon. A woman he barely knew. And in the afternoon. With her two kids home. He just went in and did this. With no criminal record whatsoever. He just decided to do this.

I knew Pervis. And I'm not talking about I went to the same school as he did and ran into him in the halls; I KNEW him. We were in the drumline together. And those of you who've been in the drumline know what I mean when I say we were all brothers.

He was different. It came out in his trial that he had an IQ of 78. He was gifted musically. He could sing like a bird. He was in the drumline but he couldn't really read music (what drummer can right?) we taught him his parts by rote. But he had no problem learning them. He was gifted. And gentle.

He was older than I was. When I first got in the drumline, after a particularly grueling day in which I was nervous and anxious, and trying to get with the program, he took me under his arm, and told me, "don't worry about it man, you're amongst friends here."

I have pictures of Pervis. And not just yearbook photos. Actual snapshots. He cared about the way he looked. He worked out incessantly. The muscles on his biceps and shoulders were so over developed that he had stretch marks. Marks that the jury were told were scratches. Despite the fact that he was never examined by a doctor when he was arrested.

He didn't do it. But. It may be too late. The Governor of Tennessee just put a moratoriam on executions in the state. It's suppossed to last three months while they go over the procedures to make sure they pass constitutional muster. This gave Pervis a repreive of sorts. He was scheduled to be electrocuted April 11th. Now he has until at least May 2nd.

He's been in prison since 1987. I used to know him but I don't know him now. I wonder what being on death row for twenty years does to a person.

I've never been to see him. Never written him a letter. Never really talked about him much. It wasn't until recently that I even tried to do any research on the case. And I was his "friend."

Students of the law have heard of his case. "Payne" went to the Supreme Court. A ruling about victim impact statements. Whether he was guilty or not was not in question. He's not.

The state has taken 20 years of his life. And now they want the rest.

There are three victims in this case. Charisse, Lacie, and come this summer, Pervis T. Payne. None of them deserve their fate.

Here's why he was arrested, charged, and ultimately sentenced to death. He was at the scene. He did have the victims blood all over him. He did run from the cops.

He was at the scene because he was waiting on his girlfriend to get home. She lived in the same apartment complex as the victim. He told police he heard a scuffle going on in the victims apartment. He witnessed a man run out of the complex. He gives the police a description. The police weren't interested. They had their man. Pervis T. Payne.

He told police that he went to the victims door, he said the door was partially opened. He knocked and announced "I'm coming in." He found the victim, sitting on the floor in her kitchen, her back leaning against a cabinet door. Her two kids were there with her. The daughter, Lacie was not moving and appeared to be dead. Pervis told the police that Charisse was not dead. She looked up at him. She couldn't talk. The knife was still in her kneck. She made feeble attempts to pull it out. Pervis told police "she wanted me to help her, her mouth move, but no sound came." He pulled the knife out. Her young son was not dead. He was sitting there in the kitchen, on his knees crying. Pervis told the police he was panicked and didn't know what to do. He knew he should do something but couldn't function. He picked up the phone in the kitchen. Panick stricken, he didn't think to dial 911. He just pushed a bunch of random numbers. He was freaked out.

So his prints were on the phone and the murder weapon. Why would a guy rape and murder a woman, murder her daughter, and attempt to murder her young son, in the middle of the afternoon, and on top of that, use the victims phone to make no phone call in particular. Why?

He couldn't make the phone work. He told Charisse, "I'm going to get help for you."

Some one else at the complex heard the struggle in Charrisse's apartment and did call 911. The arresting Millington police officer testified: "I observed [Payne] through a window in the landing of a stairwell. He bent down and picked up a duffle bag, and proceeded down the stairs out the front door of the building. When I approached, the defendant seemed agitated, and did not obey commands to put the bag down. He appeared to have blood on his shirt and scratch marks on his arms."

Pervis threw his duffle bag at the officer and ran. It was the worst mistake in his life. They found him in the attic of his sisters house a few blocks away, he literally had shit his pants. He was so nervous he was foaming at the mouth.
"I didn't kill no woman" was all he had to say.

The police had there man. The prosecutor had his man.

There was no actuall semen found in the victims vagina. Just the chemical suggestion that semen had been present. There was no dna test. The victims mother testified about how much her grandson cried and missed his mother. This victim impact statement was part of the Supreme Court case.

The semen evidence was challenged by Paynes court appointed lawyer by saying, "it's inconclusive, maybe it's semen, maybe it's not." He didn't know about the boyfriend spending the night. He was quoted later as saying had he known about the boyfriends statement he could have had all the semen testimony quashed. The whole prosecution theory would have fallen apart. According to them, he raped her, and killed her to cover it up. In the middle of the afternoon. While he was waiting on his girlfriend. He just decided to do it almost on a lark it seems. Bullshit.

A large black man, covered in the victims blood, running from the police is guilty almost by definition in thedirtysouth. His all white jury knew he was guilty. The white police officers, the white prosecutor, they all knew.

His white friends in the drumline know better. But what have we done to stop his execution? Nothing.

The state of Tennessee wants it's pound of flesh. An eye for an eye they say. Doesn't matter much who's eye.


Blogger field said...

Man get your story straight, I can tell you went to school in T county, (as did I)and Pervis back then had the nickname (well deserved I might add) Pervert Payne!!! You must have had a brain fart about that! The police did not find him at his sisters! They found him at his girlfriends, and there was NO EVIDENCE of rape, but possibly a rape gone wrong!! He was COVERED in blood, and found with cocaine on him. What was he doing on that side of the complexes anyway??? I am sorry I totally DISAGREE with you!

4:28 PM  
Blogger RBP said...

First of all, you are an idiot. The murder occurred at his girlfriends apartment. He ran from the police. This is in the police report. He ran and hid. They found him at his sisters place, hiding in the attic. Yes he had drugs on him. Yes he was using at the time. Pervis had problems. No one disputes that. He was called "pervert" by people who did not know him. Like you. He was not framed. He was wrongly convicted. Yes there was blood all over him. He acknowledged that. NO he did not try to rape that woman in the middle of the afternoon and then decide to "cover it up" by killing everyone in the room. She was more than likely killed by her boyfriend in some domestic violence situation. But, since Judge Colton, recently refused to allow ANY dna testing in this case, we will never know if the dna in Charisse's vagina was that of her boyfriend or that of Pervis Payne. It's not me with the brain fart jack-ass! But I'm sure you could give a shit. You probably have a shirt that says "kill 'em all and let God sort 'em out!" Good for you.

7:57 PM  
Blogger field said...

The murder occured at his girlfriends apartment (WHAT????) He drug the three over to the apartment? (WHAT?????)
Page 3 No. 02-5551Payne v. BellPage: One of the wounds cut the aorta and would have been rapidly fatal.Defendant was located and arrested at a townhouse where a former girlfriend, Sharon Nathaniel, lived with her sisters. Defendant had attempted to hide in the Nathaniel attic. (not his sister) ( You need to reread the Police reports and his testimony!) That woman that you so callously speak of has a name it is Charisse, she was a mother, a daughter, and a sister! Being part of her family, I have to say I am appalled that you would make comments on things you obviously have not properly read! And walking the halls with pervert almost everyday I unfortunately did know him, and no he was not framed, his hat was laying on top of Lacie (yes the baby that was brutally stabbed to death,) Three Colt 45 beer cans were found on a small table in the living room, two unopened, one opened but not empty, bearing Defendant’s fingerprints, (from the police report!!!) And another tidbit for you, Nicholas has identified him as the one who stabbed him (yes the little boy that lived but who suffered multiple stab wounds and stayed in intesive care for a VERY LONG TIME). Get more info before you post things!!! I do feel sorry for him because he allowed drugs and alcohol to overcome his life! But what he did on that day only God can forgive him for, I NEVER said I wanted him to die, I am just saying he was never right and anyone who knew him knew that!!! Please reread the Court documents and the police report before making statements that are incorrect!

1:38 PM  
Blogger RBP said...

He was waiting on his girlfriend to get home. She lived in the same complex as Charisse. I used her name in my original post and I was not at all "callous" about it. I understand she was the victim. Along with her daughter Lacie.
Pervis always contended that he threw the beer at the pursuing officers. The officers testified they found the beer in the apartment. It would have been easy for the police to pick up any and all of the things he dropped and place them at the scene. Obviously it helps their case. I just don't believe that a man, even under the influence of drugs. I man I myself grew up with, just freaked out on drugs and did this. It is the most bogus theory I've ever heard.

6:22 PM  
Blogger Professor Taylor said...

Yeah man,

I knew him too. Knew his dad and his mother (RIP). Both his sisters. Talk to them once a year. I used to attend his father's church in Millington so I'd hang out with him on the weekends (with that green caddy). I had just moved away when this happened. I visited him a couple of times in the early years. Do I believe he did it? Absolutely not. But then again...I never believed there were WMD in Iraq BEFORE we went in. Not to mention I also question the "official conspiracy theory" from the 9/11 Commission Report. know....I'm one of "them". Love ya Perv. What a horrible situation for everyone involved.

7:59 AM  
Blogger girl said...

God bless your heart for writing about Pervis. I see him often when I visit at Riverbend Maximum Security Prison. He is a gentle person, with an enduring faith. Pervis and I became acquainted through my volunteering on Death Row and although I am not one of his official visitors, we've managed to create a friendship by writing one another and he has given me strength during my times of sadness. He has given me hope when I didn't think that I would ever find light at the end of many of the tunnels I've been in. Pervis has always been one to listen, to anyone in need, as a friend, and to live like a gentleman. I worry about his fate and I want to thank you for writing about the person I have come to individual with a loving spirit, gentle soul, and a kind heart which he offers freely to each person he meets.

5:24 PM  
Blogger Tracie said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

3:52 PM  
Blogger Tracie said...

Hi RBP, I have been studying this case for a presentation in my Criminal Justice class. When I first read the case, I thought it was absolutely horrible & it made me hate Pervis. But, now that I have found this article, it makes me wonder if he really did do this crime. Has he already been executed? I think it is terrible that they didn't do a dna test. That's what makes the death penalty so awful. The justice system should make sure they have concrete dna evidence before they sentence someone to death. Thanks for writing that article.

3:53 PM  
Blogger loretta said...

I went to Munford High School with Pervis Payne, and yes he was very nice. He treated me very nice and all of the girls including his baby sister. He loved her and treated her like a queen. I have never believed that Pervis could or would do such a thing as murder. He really does have a kind heart and gentle spirit. As a person with a BS in Criminal Justice and have worked for the police department, adult and juvenile corrections, I am mad that the courts/judge did not allow DNA testing. It is "stupid" not to. We all want the truth of what happened that day. For the victims and the accused. Prosecutor's like convictions and it doesn't seem to matter if you are guilty or innocent. It is a matter of their win-loss record. I am very disappointed at the Criminal Justice System and I believe that the death penalty should be abolished.

10:57 PM  

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