Kimberly McCarthy Execution Halted, DA Won’t Appeal

Earlier today, State District Judge Larry Marshall stayed the execution of Kimberly McCarthy, which was scheduled to take place this evening.  It would have been the first Texas execution in 2013 and the fourth execution involving a female since 1982.  The Dallas County District Attorney’s Office did not appeal the decision but said that the execution had been reset for April 3.  Judge Marshall granted the stay in order to provide McCarthy’s attorneys with more time to pursue an appeal based on racial discrimination in the jury selection process.

One of McCarthy’s attorneys, Maurie Levin, issued the following statement in response to the stay:

“We are very pleased that we will now have an opportunity to present evidence of discrimination in the selection of the jury that sentenced Kimberly McCarthy to death. Of the twelve jurors seated at trial, all were white, except one, and eligible non-white jurors were excluded from serving by the State. As recognized by the U.S. Supreme Court (Miller-El v. Dretke, 2005), these facts must be understood in the context of the troubling and long-standing history of racial discrimination in jury selection in Dallas County, including at the time of Ms. McCarthy’s trial.”

Maurie Levin, attorney

Capital Punishment Clinic, University of Texas School of Law

January 29, 2013

Read more in the Houston Chronicle (as reported by the Associated Press) and the Austin Chronicle (link provided by Steve Hall at StandDown Texas).