Monday, September 18, 2006


Holton Receives Stay of Execution

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals has issued a stay of execution for Daryl Holton and called for a full hearing to determine his mental competency. The order, issued by a three judge panel today, states that there is "reasonable cause to believe that Mr. Holton is not competent to make a rational decision to dismiss his pending federal habeas corpus petition."

Wait! Someone with severe mental illness might not be mentally competent to make complex legal decisions!? Who would have thought?

Well, clearly we all knew that already, but the state of Tennessee seems to be slow catching on. The fact that a man with such clear mental illness came this close to execution clearly demonstrates how broken the capital punishment system is. If anyone ever needed more evidence that our system targets people with mental illness, here it is. And this is exactly why the National alliance on Mental Illness, the National Association of Social Workers, and the American Psychological Association all support a moratorium on capital punishment. The application is simply too unfair toward people suffering from mental illness.

So our evening's protest activities are off for today, but don't relax too much, because there are still over 100 people on Tennessee's death row and a lot of them suffer from mental illness. It may not be long until we see the state of Tennessee attempt another execution.
Comments :
Can the State of Tennessee appeal this stay today?
The state can appeal this decision today, but they are not even attempting an appeal for an en banc hearing. They are going straight to SCOTUS, however they are not expected to overturn the stay.
I’m just so glad that Holton’s execution has been stayed. As a catholic I am also proud of your diocese’s position to campaign against this brutal, immoral, degrading punishment, which is against all common sense, dignity, equity and moral standards of any civilized country.

I also battle death penalty, with all the humble means I can, from my country, Spain, where fortunately or unfortunately we’ve had a history bloody enough to prevent us form thinking that capital punishment is a means to justice. I follow closely all the cases I can via Amnesty International information and the NCADP webpages. I do it out of love for Jesus at Getsemani. Every stay in any execution feels like a victory to me.
All my support
Maria (Valencia, SPAIN)
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Thank you, Maria, for your kind words of support. We appreciate it. I hope that our country will soon bring itself in line with the rest of the industrialized world and end the death penalty.

I also want to apologize to anyne who read the previous two comments (which have now been deleted). The language was extremely offensive. And, for what it's worth, if I was going to get online and say offensive things, I'd at least have the guts to sign my name to my comments.
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