Federal court grants appeal to death row inmate
A Texas death row inmate from San Antonio has won permission from a
federal appeals court to move forward with an appeal that argues his trial
lawyer failed him during jury selection.
Reginald Blanton, 27, was condemned for the 2000 fatal shooting of
20-year-old Carlos Garza. Blanton was 18 at the time of the slaying at
Garza's San Antonio apartment in what prosecutors said was apparent
attempted drug robbery.
The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected nine appeals claims from
Blanton but agreed to issue what's known as a certificate of appealability
for a 10th claim that argued Blanton's trial attorney was ineffective by
failing to properly preserve an objection to a prosecution request for a
jury shuffle and failing to preserve evidence showing the jury shuffle in
his case was discriminatory.
In Blanton's case, the New Orleans-based 5th Circuit has given him 2 weeks
to file a brief to supplement his claim.
(source: Associated Press)