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December 3, 2014

Fifth Circuit issues stay keepingTexas from executing mentally ill condemned murderer

As reported in this CNN piece, the Fifth Circuit today "stayed the execution of Texas death row inmate Scott Panetti, who was scheduled to be put to death at 6 p.m. Wednesday." Here is more:

Panetti's case has sparked debate for years over whether the state can execute someone who is severely mentally ill.  During his trial for the 1992 slayings of his mother- and father-in-law, Panetti represented himself — dressed in a purple cowboy outfit — and called Jesus, John F. Kennedy and the Pope to the stand.  The now-56-year-old was convicted of shooting them to death at close range, in front of his wife and daughter.

Panetti has suffered from schizophrenia for 30 years, his lawyers say, and he was hospitalized for mental illness numerous times before the murders.  Though Panetti received initial evaluations of his mental health, his state of mind has deteriorated, his lawyer Kathryn Kase said.  She noted in a letter to Texas Gov. Rick Perry that Panetti hasn't received a mental evaluation in seven years.  Kase asked that Perry grant a 30-day stay to the scheduled execution so that that an evaluation can be done to determine if he understands his punishment....

"If he's executed there should be a sense of outrage," said Ron Honberg, legal director for the National Alliance on Mental Illness.  "There's no question he's mentally ill.  If this happens, the message would be — 'we just don't care.'

"To execute him flies in the face of even supporters of the death penalty who say that it should be carried out with inmates who are the worst of the worst," Honberg continued.  "It would be much more compassionate and practical to spend money treating inmates with mental illness rather than execute this man."

The Texas Board of Pardons and Parole voted 7-0 to deny clemency in Panetti's case.  There is still an appeal before the U.S. Supreme Court, in addition to the appeal the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals granted Wednesday.

December 3, 2014 at 07:04 PM | Permalink

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Comments

`The filthy lawyer traitor on the Supreme Court prevented this patient from getting treatment against his will, saying treatment would violate his rights, rights they invented from their own subjective feelings. They have no appreciation that delayed treatment in mental illness gets irreversible, like a breast tumor the size of pinhead allowed to go untreated until the size of an orange. Why? Becaue they do not know anything technical, yet get to be the final arbiters of highly technical questions. How? At the point of a gun.

Then he kills someone. Around the world 10% of the murders are committed by paranoid schizophrenics. That means all the rampage killings plus thousands more not in the news each year after year.

Now similarly dimwitted, but slickly rent seeking lawyers will prevent his execution so that he may kill again in prison, in forensic units of mental hospitals or wherever he goes, including medical hospital for ordinary medical care.

Welcome to the lawyer Twilight Zone, where up is down, black is white, and we cannot escape, because men with guns will not allow it.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Dec 6, 2014 12:24:52 AM

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