Supreme Court grants last-minute execution stay!
So maybe they aren't always a bunch of jerks
I got home from work dreading the worst--that I would hear Delma Banks, Jr. had become the 300th man to be executed in the state of Texas since 1976. But instead, I heard this (from the AP):
The Supreme Court on Wednesday stopped Texas from executing its 300th inmate since capital punishment resumed in the United States in 1977, granting a dramatic last-minute stay to condemned killer Delma Banks.
Banks' claims that he was wrongly convicted of a murder 23 years ago were backed by three former federal judges.
His lawyers told justices that he was poorly represented at trial, that prosecutors improperly kept blacks off the jury, and that testimony from two prosecution witnesses was shaky. Banks is black, his victim was white and the jury was all-white.
The court issued the stay, without comment, about 10 minutes before the 44-year-old was to be put to death for the 1980 murder of 16-year-old Richard Wayne Whitehead, a co-worker at a restaurant.
It's a stay, of course, and not a pardon. But the important thing at the moment is that Delma Banks, Jr. is still alive... and still has a chance.
Oh, and if anyone's wondering why the below blog post on Delma Banks, Jr. disappeared today, that was a mistake of the blogging software, I didn't take it down on purpose!