Innocent on Death Row? New Evidence Casts Doubt on Convictions

Rodney Reed’s death sentence was suspended. But researchers say other current cases raise similar doubt about the guilt of the accused.
The number of executions in the United States remains close to nearly a three-decade low. And yet the decline has not prevented what those who closely track the death penalty see as a disturbing trend: a significant number of cases in which prisoners are being put to death, or whose execution dates are near, despite questions about their guilt.
Rodney Reed, who came within days of execution in Texas before an appeals court suspended his death sentence on Friday, has been the most high-profile recent example, receiving support from Texas lawmakers of both parties and celebrities like Rihanna and Kim Kardashian West, who urged a new examination of the evidence.
Mr. Reed has long maintained that he did not commit the 1996 murder for which he was convicted. And in recent months, new witnesses came forward pointing toward another possible suspect: the dead…

UAE: Widow pardons husband's killer in Abu Dhabi

A Pakistani widow surprised the judge at an Abu Dhabi court when she told him she was forgiving the killer of her husband in line with Islamic teachings.

The judge had given the woman three options — either to pardon the defendant, demand diya (blood money) or have the killer executed.

“This Pakistani woman has set an example in forgiveness,” the semi-official Arabic language daily ‘Al Ittihad’ said.

“She and her sons decided to pardon the killer of her husband. 

She affirmed to court that she only did this in line with Islamic teachings which call for toleration and forgiveness and that she only wanted to satisfy God the Almighty.”

Under Islamic law, a convicted killer can be freed after spending a specific jail term if pardoned by the victim’s relatives in return for diya.

Source: Emirates 24/7, December 24, 2014

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