With 12 in Texas on federal death row, Justice Department resumes executions
AUSTIN, Texas — The U.S. Supreme Court earlier this week declined to hear a challenge to the Trump administration’s revised federal death penalty practice, and the four men who appealed their executions are scheduled to be put to death this summer.The U.S. Justice Department has said additional executions will be set at a later date. The last federal execution, in any state, took place in 2003.None of the four cases is from Texas, but even if the Supreme Court had temporarily blocked the men’s executions, such a decision would not have had an effect on those on federal death row in the Lone St...
Nation and world news briefs
Supreme Court rejects inmates’ appeal, keeps federal executions on trackWASHINGTON — The U.S. Supreme Court put President Donald Trump’s administration on track to resume federal executions as soon as July 13, rejecting an appeal by inmates who challenged the lethal injection protocol the government plans to use.Over two dissents, the justices left intact a lower court decision backing the administration’s plan for carrying out the first federal executions since 2003. The Justice Department scheduled four in July and August, all of men convicted of murdering children.The inmates said the proto...
Tribune News Service
Timberwolves' Josh Okogie calls playing field for blacks 'unfair' after George Floyd's death
Josh Okogie can’t help but replay the situation in his mind and analyze all the ways in which George Floyd could still be alive.The 21-year-old Timberwolves guard also can’t shake the way police treated Floyd compared to the way police treated Dylann Roof, a white supremacist who was sentenced to death for murdering nine black people in a South Carolina church in 2015.“He goes into a Baptist church and mass murders all these people. The cops come. They put a bulletproof vest on him, nobody harms him. Feed him Burger King,” Okogie said. “So a guy who did a crime harsh enough to get the death se...
Star Tribune (Minneapolis)
Conservative Florida Supreme Court reverses itself again on death penalty legal issue
MIAMI — Harry Franklin Phillips, a convict who shot a Miami parole officer to death in 1982, was hoping to get his death sentence reversed by convincing the courts that he is intellectually disabled.But the Florida Supreme Court, backtracking on its own case decided only years ago, on Thursday ruled that Phillips isn’t ineligible, the court’s latest reversal in how sentences in major cases are meted out.The court ruled that an earlier decision allowed for the broadening of who can be deemed intellectually disabled — generally someone with an IQ of 70 or less — does not apply “retroactively” to...
Georgia man freed after 43 years for crime he denies committing
ATLANTA — After 43 years in prison — more than 25 years of that on death row — Johnny Lee Gates walked out of custody on Friday a free man.Gates was convicted during a 1977 trial of the rape, armed robbery and murder of a 19-year-old German immigrant who’d moved to Columbus 12 days earlier to be with her husband, a soldier at Fort Benning. But Gates’ lawyers later showed that prosecutors used blatant race discrimination during jury selection and persuaded the Georgia Supreme Court to grant Gates a new trial based on newly discovered DNA evidence.“I’ve fought for 43 years for this day,” Gates s...
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution