Anthony Haynes execution stayed

22 October 2012

On 18 October, the US Supreme Court granted a stay of execution to Anthony Haynes about two-and-a-half hours before he was scheduled to be put to death.

 

Hundreds of people took action through www.amnesty.ie to support calls for his sentence to be changed. He was due to be executed in Texas, for the murder of an off-duty police officer committed when he was 19 years old.

 

At about 3.30pm on 18 October, the US Supreme Court said it had voted 7-2 to grant the stay in order to allow more time to decide whether to review the merits of Anthony Haynes’ petition. If the Court decides not to take the case, the stay of execution will be dissolved. 

 

From his holding cell outside Texas' death chamber,Anthony Haynes on Thursday praised God for sparing his life.

 

"God told me I wouldn't die on death row," an ecstatic Haynes told a prison employee. "He put things in my path to keep me focused. God proved himself to be faithful. He delivered me from the death chamber. To God be all the glory." 

 

In 1999, Anthony Haynes was convicted of the fatal shooting of off-duty police officer Kent Kincaid in Houston, Texas on 22 May 1998. To obtain a death sentence, the state had to persuade the jury that Anthony Haynes would be a continuing threat to society, even in prison. 

 

Although the defendant had no prior criminal record that the state could point to, the state’s case was helped by the defence lawyers’ failure to present a range of available mitigation evidence. For example, the jury heard neither expert mitigation testimony on the defendant’s history of mental health problems, nor testimony on the mitigating effects of youth.

 

Many thanks to everyone who took action but others facing execution need your help.

 

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