Crime Supreme Court To Consider Petition In Texas Death Penalty Case
Before his execution, a death row inmate told his victim's family he forgives them
Charles Rhines, who was convicted of murder in the brutal stabbing of a 22-year-old man in 1992, was executed in South Dakota Monday, the state's attorney general said, after the Supreme Court denied a last-ditch appeal of his case. © South Dakota Department of Corrections via AP In this Dec. 31, 2017 photo provided by the South Dakota Department of Corrections is Charles Rhines at the South Dakota State Penitentiary in Sioux Falls. South Dakota Circuit Judge Jon Sogn has denied Rhines' request to delay his execution next week over the drug to be used.
DALLAS (1080 KRLD) - The U.S. Supreme Court is scheduled to hear a request to consider the death penalty case of Rodney Reed this Friday.
Reed is scheduled to be executed November 20 for killing Stacey Stites in Bastrop in 1996.
Reed was convicted and sentenced to death in 1998, but his defense team says new witness statements and forensic evidence show he is innocent., asking him to sign a 30 day reprieve and "instruct the Board of Pardons and Paroles to investigate whether a commutation of Mr. Reed's death sentence should be granted in light of the grave doubt concerning his guilt."
Free Rodney Reed Petition Surpasses 2 Million Signatures to Stop Execution of Texas Death Row Inmate
Reed is scheduled to be executed on November 20.Reed, 51, was convicted of raping and murdering 18-year-old Stacey Stites in 1996 and is scheduled to be executed Nov. 20. Campaigners advocating for Reed's release claim he is innocent and celebrities, including Kim Kardashian West, urged Abbott to stop the execution as new evidence could exonerate the 51-year-old.
The Innocence Project also says the execution order should be void because it was signed by a judge they say had no authority over the case. Judge Doug Shaver sent a letter to the Texas Supreme Court announcing his retirement 17 days after signing the execution order. The motion says Shaver took the case after another judge recused herself.
Last weekend, hundreds of people gathered outside the Texas governor's mansion to call on Greg Abbott to stop the execution.
"To date, Texas courts have refused to consider the unrebutted forensic evidence proving Mr. Reed did not commit the crime and also have denied access to DNA testing that can confirm Fennell's guilt. Appellate litigation is currently pending in the United States Supreme Court and the federal courts in Texas; but the State opposes even a brief stay of Mr. Reed's execution to provide the respective courts the opportunity to consider Mr. Reed's claims," the Innocence Project wrote in the letter to Abbott.
Celebrities, others ask Texas to halt inmate's execution
Supporters of a Texas death row inmate who is facing lethal injection in less than two weeks for a murder he says he didn't commit are mounting a final push in the courts and on social media to stop his execution, which is being called into question by lawmakers, pastors, celebrities and the European Union.
A bi-partisan group of 16 state senators signed a letter to Abbott, asking him to grant "a reprieve until the new developments in this case are fully resolved." They say that would "allow the cloud of doubt surrounding his guilt to be lifted." Abbott has not responded.
A hearing is scheduled Wednesday in Bastrop County on the petition to stop the execution. The Supreme Court will hear the petition to intervene this Friday.
This is a remarkable bipartisan coalition. Having spent yrs in law enforcement, I believe capital punishment can be justice for the very worst murderers, but if there is credible evidence there's a real chance the defendant is innocent, that evidence should be weighed carefully.-- Ted Cruz (@tedcruz)
Supreme Court to take up military rape case .
The US Supreme Court on Friday accepted a Justice Department appeal to review the cases of three men in the Air Force whose rape convictions were overturned last year -- including one whose confession the Air Force recorded -- when the top military appeals court found a five-year statute of limitations existed for military sexual assault before 2006. © Joe Raedle/Getty Images A United States Air Force decal is seen on the hearse during the funeral for retired Air Force Lt. Col. Eldridge Williams at the Sweet Home Missionary Baptist Church on July 21, 2015 in Miami, Florida.
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