FEATURED POST

Pope Declares Death Penalty Inadmissible in All Cases

Image
ROME — Pope Francis has declared the death penalty inadmissible in all cases because it is “an attack” on the “dignity of the person,” the Vatican announced on Thursday, in a definitive shift in Roman Catholic teaching that could put enormous pressure on lawmakers and politicians around the world.
Francis, who has spoken out against capital punishment before — including in 2015 in an address to Congress — added the change to the Catechism, the collection of beliefs for the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics.
The revision says the church would work “with determination” for the abolition of capital punishment worldwide.
“I think this will be a big deal for the future of the death penalty in the world,” said John Thavis, a Vatican expert and author. “People who work with prisoners on death row will be thrilled, and I think this will become a banner social justice issue for the church,” he added.
Sergio D’Elia, the secretary of Hands Off Cain, an association that works to abolish capital puni…

Texas death row inmate slated for execution Wednesday denied clemency

Erick Davila
A Fort Worth man on Texas death row was denied clemency and a late-stage federal appeal on Monday, barely 48 hours before he is scheduled for execution in the Huntsville death chamber.

Erick Davila was convicted of killing a rival gang member's mother and a 5-year-old girl at a Hannah Montana-themed children's birthday party in 2008.

He was sentenced to death in 2009 but his lawyers have since argued that Annette and Queshawn Stevenson were not his intended victims, according to court filings. Instead, attorney Seth Kretzer alleged that Davila was high at the time of the slayings, and also that he only meant to one person, rival gang member Jerry Stevenson. Killing one person is not necessarily a death-eligible crime.

"The jury never learned that at the time of the shooting Davila was heavily intoxicated, likely to the degree that it would have rendered him temporarily insane," Kretzer wrote in a court filing earlier this month.

Kretzer said prosecutors of withheld knowledge that Davila was on a combination of PCP, ecstasy and marijuana - an alleged oversight that he said would violate a Supreme Court decision known as Brady v. Maryland, which requires prosecutors to turn over evidence favorable to the defense.

But the U.S. Fifth Circuit, in a Monday decision, wrote that defense lawyers could have already known about Davila's heavy drug use the night of the crime.

"We are unpersuaded that his counsel was not also reasonably on notice about the relation between drugs and the events of the shooting," the court wrote.

Now, Davila's lawyer is pursuing his claims in the U.S. Supreme Court.

Davila is scheduled to die by lethal injection Wednesday at 6 p.m. If everything continues as planned, he will be the fifth Texas inmate to be executed in 2018.

Source: chron.com, Keri Blakinger, April 24, 2018


⚑ | Report an error, an omission, a typo; suggest a story or a new angle to an existing story; submit a piece, a comment; recommend a resource; contact the webmaster, contact us: deathpenaltynews@gmail.com.


Opposed to Capital Punishment? Help us keep this blog up and running! DONATE!



"One is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed,
but by the punishments that the good have inflicted." -- Oscar Wilde

Most Viewed (Last 7 Days)

Tennessee executes Billy Ray Irick

Tennessee executes Cecil C. Johnson Jr.

Nebraska executes Carey Dean Moore

New Study: Death Penalty Costing Nebraska Taxpayers $14.6 Million Each Year

Paralysis, eye gouging, amputation, crucifixion: The Medieval punishments faced by criminals in Saudi Arabia

URGENT APPEAL for Anthony Haynes to be executed in Texas on 18 October

USA: State of Nebraska set to carry out first execution in 21 years

Fentanyl Used to Execute Nebraska Inmate, in a First for U.S.

What happened in and outside Riverbend prison as Billy Ray Irick was put to death

How Carey Dean Moore's execution, Nebraska's 1st lethal injection, will be carried out