Fifth Circuit to Hold Oral Argument Re: Scott Panetti’s Incompetency for Execution

This week, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit will consider the case of Scott Panetti, who faced execution last year by the State of Texas despite his long, documented history of severe mental illness. Panetti holds a fixed delusional belief that the State seeks to execute him to prevent him from preaching the gospel.

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5th Circuit Court of Appeals Stays the Execution of Scott Panetti

BREAKING: The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals has stayed the execution of Scott Panetti, who had been scheduled for execution in Texas tonight at 6 p.m. CT. Below is a statement from Mr. Panetti’s legal team, Greg Wiercioch of University of Wisconsin Law School and Kathryn Kase of Texas Defender Service, followed by background about […]

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Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles rejects clemency for Scott Panetti

Breaking: This afternoon, despite widespread support from the country’s and Texas’ leading mental health organizations, dozens of conservative and Evangelical leaders, the American Bar Association and hundreds of other prominent individuals and organizations, the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles unanimously voted, 7-0, to deny a commutation recommendation for Scott Panetti, a man who has suffered […]

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Attorneys for Scott Panetti appeal to U.S. Supreme Court

Citing trends which demonstrate an emerging consensus against the use of capital punishment against people with severe mental illness, attorneys for Mr. Panetti today filed for a stay of execution at the U.S. Supreme Court, with a petition for a writ of certiorari challenging the constitutionality of Mr. Panetti’s execution. Mr. Panetti was diagnosed with schizophrenia and schizoaffective disorder decades before the crime for which he is scheduled to be executed this Wednesday, December 3rd, in Texas.

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New Poll: Americans Opposed to Death Penalty for People with Mental Illness

A new poll by Public Policy Polling released today found that Americans oppose the death penalty for persons with mental illness by a margin of 2 to 1. Fifty-eight percent of respondents said they opposed the death penalty for persons with mental illness, while only 28% favored it. Opposition was consistent across all political parties, with a majority of Democrats (62%), Republicans (59%), and Independents(51%) all indicating they opposed the death penalty for the mentally ill, and across all regions of the country.

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