On Tuesday, January 31, a federal district court in Corpus Christi granted a stay of execution to John Ramirez. Ramirez was scheduled to be executed on February 2, 2017 for the 2004 murder of Pablo Castro.U.S. District Judge Nelva Gonzales Ramos granted the stay based on Ramirez’s claims of ineffective counsel by his previous court-appointed attorney.
Following the ruling, the Texas Attorney General’s Office sought to overturn the stay at the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals. On February 1, the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the stay of execution. This marks the first stay of the year.