Federal crimes can land you in prison and lead to long sentences. Sometimes, people are wrongfully accused and convicted of crimes they didn’t commit. In worst-case scenarios, they face execution.
In a case in Georgia, a man who is being sentenced to death has launched a last-ditch effort to appeal his case and support his claim of innocence. He has asked a federal judge to stay the execution and order DNA testing on evidence collected at the crime scene.
In the court paperwork, the man’s lawyers stated that the test would support the defendant’s claims that it was another man who shot and killed a store clerk in a 1994 robbery. The defendant claims it was the co-defendant who shot the man. Presently, the defendant has a conviction for malice murder, which means that he was found directly responsible for the man’s death.
The man’s stepbrother has come forward to state that he did overhear the co-defendant stating that he shot the victim. His attorneys stated that no jury would have convicted the defendant with that knowledge in the past. The defendant’s attorneys are seeking DNA tests on the shells of casings and other evidence that could support that he was not the shooter. So far, requests for DNA testing have been denied.
Interestingly, the victim’s daughter has spoken up and stated that she worries that the man did not shoot her father. She has said that executing him with that doubt would be senseless.
It’s not yet known if the appeal will be granted, but with so much at stake, it is important that the defense is considered.