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Why Texas’ ‘death penalty capital of the world’ stopped executing people

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Since the Supreme Court legalized capital punishment in 1976, Harris County, Texas, has executed 126 people. That's more executions than every individual state in the union, barring Texas itself.
Harris County's executions account for 23 percent of the 545 people Texas has executed. On the national level, the state alone is responsible for more than a third of the 1,465 people put to death in the United States since 1976.
In 2017, however, the county known as the "death penalty capital of the world" and the "buckle of the American death belt" executed and sentenced to death a remarkable number of people: zero.
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.
The remarkable statistic reflects a shift the nation is seeing as a whole.
“The practices that the Harris County District Attorney’s Office is following are also signifi…

Former Oklahoma death row inmate accepts settlement in $32 million lawsuit

Yancy Douglas
Yancy Douglas
OKLAHOMA CITY - A former Oklahoma death row inmate freed after a court found prosecutorial misconduct has settled his lawsuit against a former prosecutor and the state of Oklahoma for an undisclosed amount.

The Oklahoman reported Saturday Yancy Douglas accepted the settlement in the federal case in which he initially sought $32 million for wrongful imprisonment, malicious prosecution and other claims.

Douglas and another former death row inmate, Paris Powell, filed separate federal lawsuits in 2010 after their murder convictions were overturned.

The two were convicted in the fatal drive-by shooting of a 14-year-old girl in south Oklahoma City in 1993.

A federal appeals court overturned their convictions in 2009 after concluding a prosecutor knowingly used false testimony from the only eyewitness.

Powell’s lawsuit is still pending.

Source: News9.com, August 7, 2017


Former Death Row Inmate Settles Lawsuit Against Oklahoma


Former death row inmate Yancy L. Douglas has accepted a settlement in his $32 million lawsuit against a former prosecutor and the state of Oklahoma.

How much he will be paid from taxpayer dollars under the settlement was not immediately disclosed.

"The terms of it are confidential," said John W. Coyle, one of his attorneys.

Douglas, 43, and another former death row inmate, Paris Lapriest Powell, 44, filed separate lawsuits in Oklahoma City federal court in 2010 after their murder convictions were overturned.

A jury trial in Douglas' lawsuit had been scheduled to begin next week. The case was settled Wednesday.

A jury trial in Powell's lawsuit is set to begin Sept. 12. He also is seeking $32 million.

Douglas and Powell were on death row for years after being convicted at separate trials in the fatal drive-by shooting of a 14-year-old girl, Shauna Farrow.

Source: NewsOK, Nolan Klay, August 5, 2017

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