Federal judge delays execution of condemned inmate

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Federal judge delays execution of condemned inmate Empty Federal judge delays execution of condemned inmate

Post  Zana@4wardEver on Fri Aug 22, 2008 8:08 pm

A federal judge on Thursday delayed the execution of a condemned inmate so he can be tested to determine whether he's mentally competent to understand why he would be put to death.

Jeffery Wood had been set to be executed Thursday for taking part in a 1996 robbery in the Texas Hill Country store in which a clerk was fatally shot. But U.S. District Judge Orlando Garcia in San Antonio on Thursday granted a request by Wood's attorneys to delay his execution so they could hire a mental health expert to pursue their arguments that he is incompetent to be executed. Texas courts had previously refused similar appeals.

Wood's "motion presents non-frivolous arguments suggesting (he) currently lacks a rational understanding of the connection between his role in his offense and the punishment imposed upon him," Garcia wrote in his 20-page order. While Garcia wrote that the evidence was far from compelling, there were enough facts to conclude Wood had made a "substantial threshold showing of insanity."

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