Death Row inmate asks for donations


Donation requests come in all forms, but here's one you probably won't want to contribute to -- California Death Row inmate Scott Peterson has a Web site asking people to give money for his appeal.

Peterson was convicted in November 2004 for the 2002 killing of his 8-month's pregnant wife, Laci. Her torso was found in the San Francisco Bay.

Donations for needy causes are justified -- veterans, Boy Scouts, and the sick, among others -- but Death Row is a cause that isn't likely to get many supporters.

Donations of $5 to $50 are being sought to help free Peterson. A PayPal account is set up on the site to make giving easier.

Peterson's Web site isn't actually run by him, since Death Row inmates don't have access to the Internet. It's put out by his family, who say they need $95,000 to cover the expenses of the investigation.

The California Supreme Court has appointed Cliff Gardner as Peterson's appellate attorney, one of the attorneys the family hired in March 2005 to work on the case. The state is covering some of the investigative costs, but more money is needed to hire experts to review evidence, complete forensic testing and speak with key witnesses, according to the Web site.

The Peterson's parents have paid for his defense for the past six years but have exhausted their resources, the site says.

The Web site doesn't make any mention about whether a donation is tax-deductible or not. Somehow, I doubt that they are.