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 Texas death row

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updated Sun. March 17, 2019

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A northeast Texas man convicted of strangling his girlfriend moved one step closer to a possible execution date after the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday turned down his appeal despite what his lawyer described as a "compelling case of actual innocence." Daniel Acker was sent to death row in 2001 for the ...
As first reported by the Houston Chronicle, Texas is currently awaiting a decision from U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions on whether its state appellate system is competent enough to limit death row appeals in federal court. If approved, the time frame for inmate attorneys to file petitions in federal court ...

Anthony Graves spent 12 years on death row before a conservative federal court tossed out his wrongful capital murder conviction. Texas courts had previously rejected all of his appeals. “I had to get out of the state of Texas and into the federal court system to get help,” he told The Texas Tribune on Friday.
In a last-ditch effort to save him, Houston defense attorneys for a condemned inmate from Fort Worth argue that he should be spared death because he did not intend to kill two people in 2008 and he was high on a narcotic cocktail. Erick Davila, 31, is scheduled to be put to death April 25. Attorneys Seth ...
... would shorten the appeals process for death row inmates, allowing the state to execute prisoners faster. Fans of the provision say it will speed up the lengthy appeals process for crime victims and save the government money from dragged out legal proceedings, the Houston Chronicle reported Monday.
With weeks to go before his scheduled execution, defense lawyers for Erick Davila are arguing that he should be spared death because he was high at the time of the slaying and didn't intend to kill more than one person. The Fort Worth man was convicted of killing a rival gang member's mother and a ...

Texas is seeking to speed up executions with a renewed request to "opt in" to a federal law that would shorten the legal process and limit appeals options for death-sentenced prisoners. Defense attorneys worry it would lead to the execution of innocent people and — if it's applied retroactively, as Texas is ...
Forensic hypnosis is what brought Flores, who is now 47, back to a Dallas district courtroom in October and again in December. Texas was supposed to execute him in June 2016, but the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals delayed the lethal injection a week before it was scheduled. Flores' new attorneys filed ...
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of a Texas death row inmate Wednesday, ordering a federal appellate court to reconsider providing funding for him to investigate previously unexplored evidence that he believes could toss out his death sentence. The high court ruled unanimously to send the case of ...
SAN ANTONIO - A man on Texas death row lost his appeal Thursday moving him one step closer to execution. The United States Court of Appeals denied Ray Freeney's lastest plea. He claimed he did not have enough legal help during the punishment phase of his trial in 2003. Back then he was condemned for the rapes ...
Brown always maintained his innocence, and spent nearly 10 years on death row before his case was dismissed in 2015 and his conviction overturned. According the Chronicle, the 36-year-old Brown later sued a slew of Harris County officials, including the DA's office, the prosecutor and police officer who ...
A 19-year-old like the Parkland, Florida, school shooter, for example, probably wouldn't view execution as a threat if he is on death row for 10 to 20 years beforehand. “He's doubled his life span,” Waldrip said. “I think the death penalty has to have a broader, more beneficial societal effect, or we're not better ...
The Texas prison system is considering moving youthful offenders from a Brazoria prison to the former death row unit in Huntsville on the heels of a rape investigation, according to one lawmaker and multiple sources within the agency. "I've heard that it was a done deal," said state Sen. John Whitmire ...
The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday rejected a Texas case that questioned the constitutionality of the state's execution process. The lawsuit dated back to 2013, when multiple death row inmates sued the Texas prison system claiming its lethal injection protocol is unconstitutional, in part based on the drugs ...
Three Texas cases will be featured in the upcoming season of HLN's "Death Row Stories," a true crime documentary series. Over the course of eight one-hour episodes, the show explores the "fallibility of the ultimate criminal penalty," according to a press release. Narrated by actress Susan Sarandon, ...
Three Texas cases will be featured in the upcoming season of HLN's "Death Row Stories," a true crime documentary series. Over the course of eight one-hour episodes, the show explores the "fallibility of the ultimate criminal penalty," according to a press release. Narrated by actress Susan Sarandon, ...
In an exceedingly rare move, the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles voted Tuesday to recommend a lesser sentence for a death row inmate facing execution. The board voted unanimously in favor of clemency for Thomas Bartlett Whitaker, a man who is set to die on Thursday evening. The decision now ...

Despite hopes that two recent U.S. Supreme Court cases would stop his execution at the last minute, William Rayford was put to death Tuesday night in the second execution in Texas and the nation this year. In multiple last-minute appeals, the 64-year-old death row inmate claimed his sentencing trial in ...
In early 2016, we told you about the Western Slope arrest of former Texas death-row resident Claude Wilkerson for allegedly keeping a woman chained to his bed and repeatedly raping her. Just over two years later, Wilkerson has agreed to a plea deal in the case, and it's a sweet one. He's admitted guilt to ...
Once on site, they were kept in vehicles outside the actual death row facilities. Such waits are not unusual, but this one lasted well over an hour. Shortly before 11:30 p.m., Department of Corrections officials and guards could be seen conferring, though it was not immediately clear what was happening.".
Meanwhile, in Texas, Governor Greg Abbott halted what would have been Thursday's third U.S. execution, granting clemency to condemned prisoner Bart Whitaker and commuting his sentence to life in prison without the possibility of parole. Prosecutors say that in 2003 Bart Whitaker arranged to have a ...
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott decided to reduce Thomas Whitaker's sentence to life in prison without parole, the governor said in a statement. It's the first time Abbott spared the life of an inmate on death row and the first time in years that a governor reduced the sentence of a death row inmate. Abbott has allowed ...
Of course I remembered saying those words, I told her; after all, holding tight to that belief had gotten me through some dark times on death row when I thought that the State of Texas might just succeed in killing me. “You're going home, Anthony,” Nicole said, her eyes growing wider as she spoke. “Siegler ...
Shore's execution originally was set for last October but was delayed for an investigation after another Texas death row inmate concocted a scheme to get Shore to take responsibility for his crimes. In 2017, 23 convicted killers were put to death in the U.S., seven of them in Texas, more than another state.
HUNTSVILLE, Texas (AP) — A Fort Worth man on death row for the shooting deaths of a 5-year-old girl and her grandmother at a children's birthday party a decade ... Texas Department of Criminal Justice officials have received court documents setting 30-year-old Erick Davila for lethal injection April 25.
A Fort Worth man convicted of killing a rival gang member's mother and a 5-year-old girl at a children's birthday party 10 years ago has been given an execution date. Erick Davila is scheduled to meet his fate in the Huntsville death chamber on April 25 at 6 p.m., according to court papers. A judge signed off ...
Though she has said the death penalty is “pure retribution,” Ogg told the Texas Observer last year that she still believes in it. But in two major death penalty cases that made their way to the U.S. Supreme Court, Ogg opted for reduced punishments. After the high court ruled death row inmate Duane Buck ...
A Houston-area death row prisoner convicted of killing two men in a drug deal gone bad lost out Monday in a federal appeals court, a ruling that could move him one step closer to an execution date. Attorneys for Paul Wayne Slater, a brain-damaged junior high dropout with a low IQ, argued it was bad ...
A Fort Bend death row prisoner scheduled for execution in February for his role in a plot to kill his own family is begging for a reprieve in a request bolstered by 58 letters of support - including seven fellow death row prisoners. Thomas "Bart" Whitaker is slated to die on Feb. 22 for the 2003 slayings of his ...
The U.S. Supreme Court has refused to review appeals from two Texas death row inmates, including a San Antonio man convicted of killing a convenience store owner during a robbery and man condemned for his involvement in the slaying of a former suburban Houston police officer's wife. The high court ...
John William King is on Texas' Death Row for his role in the 1998 dragging death of James Byrd Jr. One of three white men convicted in the 1998 East Texas dragging death of a black man is arguing in an appeal that the killing was a "backwoods drug deal gone bad" and not racially motivated.
Twenty years ago, if prosecutors had the option to pursue the death penalty but opted not to, “you'd run the risk of paying for it in the next election because people would see you as being soft on crime,” says Jeff Newberry, a lawyer who represents Texas death row inmates and supervises students at the ...
It was exactly the kind of crime that in the not-too-distant past would have been a slam-dunk death case in Harris County, which has the dubious distinction of having sent more people to death row than any jurisdiction in the nation and, aside from the state of Texas as a whole, is responsible for the greatest ...
Other reporters on the panel worked for more prestigious newspapers — including The New York Times and Washington Post — but it was the writer from bloodthirsty Texas who drew more attention. Were Texans just crazy, they wondered. How could so many people be worth sending to death row?
Nearly three out of four death dates scheduled nationwide in 2017 were cancelled, after courts and governors intervened in 58 executions across the country. That's one of the striking takeaways from a pair of end-of-year reports that offer sweeping overviews of capital punishment in 2017. The broader ...
Since the Supreme Court legalized capital punishment in 1976, Harris County, Texas, has executed 126 people. That's more ... This is the first time since 1985 that Harris County did not execute any of its death row inmates, and the third year in a row it did not sentence anyone to capital punishment either.
Despite the decline, Texas still has the third-largest death row population in the nation, only trailing behind California and Florida — even though the state's current death row population (234 inmates) is the lowest it's been seen since 1987, according to the report. The death penalty is legal in 31 states.
The number of inmates on Texas' death row dropped again this year, continuing a decades-long trend. The decline is caused largely by fewer new death sentences and more reduced punishments in recent years, according to end-of-year reports released Thursday by groups critical of the death penalty in ...
Salvadoran Man on Texas Death Row Loses Supreme Court Appeal. The U.S. Supreme has refused to review an appeal from a 48-year-old Salvadoran man on Texas death row for the slayings of two Houston store clerks during an attempted robbery more than 17 years ago. Dec. 11, 2017, at 11:05 a.m.. Salvadoran Man ...
Texas death row inmate seeks resentencing in Hidalgo County. by CBS 4 News. Douglas Armstrong, 47, of Donna was convicted of capital murder in 2007 for the April 2006 death of Rafael Castelan. Armstrong returned to Hidalgo County last week for a sentencing retrial.{ }. douglas armstrong.jpg · douglas armstrong ...
Hilda Vasquez was a newcomer to the party, a first-timer. She didn't know what to expect, but she took in the decorations, the snacks, the table full of ornaments. A pair of skates, wind chimes. A wooden snowman. A teddy bear. A picture of a little girl. She nestled hers - a picture of her son - in between them ...
He did not. He didn't pull a trigger, didn't wield a knife, didn't take any direct action that caused another person's death. But twice now, Wood, 44, has come within only a few days of being executed by the state of Texas. He was convicted under Texas' felony murder statute, informally called the "law of ...
Despite the decline, Texas still has the third-largest death row population in the nation, only trailing behind California and Florida — even though the state's current death row population (234 inmates) is the lowest it's been seen since 1987, according to the report. The death penalty is legal in 31 states.
The number of inmates on Texas' death row dropped again this year, continuing a decades-long trend. The decline is caused largely by fewer new death sentences and more reduced punishments in recent years, according to end-of-year reports released Thursday by groups critical of the death penalty in ...
Salvadoran Man on Texas Death Row Loses Supreme Court Appeal. The U.S. Supreme has refused to review an appeal from a 48-year-old Salvadoran man on Texas death row for the slayings of two Houston store clerks during an attempted robbery more than 17 years ago. Dec. 11, 2017, at 11:05 a.m.. Salvadoran Man ...
Wilke asked the board to recommend Gov. Greg Abbott grant clemency and change Wood's sentence to life in prison. The letter was sent in August, but The Texas Tribune received a copy from the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals Thursday after a Wednesday court order referred to it. “While I am aware that ...
For the first time since 1985, no Harris County killers will be executed by the state of Texas this year, a landmark shift for a county once known as the "capital of capital punishment." Despite a slight uptick in executions nationwide, Harris County's one execution this year was cancelled after a desperate ...
Texas Death Row Inmate's Execution Postponed Over False Testimony. Posted By Lyanne A. ... He was supposed to be the last prisoner on death row to be executed in Texas this year. ... Gutierrez's false testimony is prompting the Texas CCA to pause the execution and further review Castillo's case.
In this May 27, 2008 file photo, the gurney in Huntsville, Texas, where .... be innocent people on death row and whether we should celebrate it ...
Death Row inmate Martin Gurule briefly tasted freedom when he escaped from the Ellis Unit in November 1998, scaling two fences. .


 

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