source: Common Dreams
published: 16 November 2019
Death penalty opponents and human rights defenders applauded on Friday night after the highest court in Texas issued an indefinite stay of execution for Rodney Reed.
According to the Austin Statesman:
The order by the Court of Criminal Appeals came hours after the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles voted unanimously to recommend that Gov. Greg Abbott delay, for 120 days, Wednesday’s scheduled execution.
The board declined to support Reed’s request to commute his death sentence to a life term in prison.
Abbott could have accepted or rejected the seven-member board’s recommendation, but Friday’s stay of execution took the matter out of his hands.
Citing Reed’s innocence in the 1996 murder for which he was convicted, human rights groups have been demanding Reed be taken off death row for years. That call has become increasingly urgent as his scheduled execution date approach.
“We are extremely relieved and thankful that the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals (CCA) has issued a stay of execution for our client Rodney Reed,” said the Innocence Project, which has been working on Reed’s appeal, in a statement. “The CCA has ordered the claims of Brady violations, false testimony and actual innocence in Mr. Reed’s case back to the trial court.