A bipartisan group, comprising the vast majority of members within the Texas Home of Representatives, have come ahead, united, in assist of clemency for Melissa Lucio, who’s scheduled to be executed for against the law that by no means occurred on April 27, 2022. Eighty-three Texas representatives signed a letter to Gov. Greg Abbott and the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles asking to grant Ms. Lucio clemency. Final week, they held a press convention to additional voice the pressing have to cease this irreversible injustice.
On the press convention on March 24, state consultant Jeff Leach (R-Plano), co-chair of the Home’s bipartisan Felony Justice Reform Caucus, said, “The system actually failed Melissa Lucio at each single flip. As a conservative Republican myself, who has lengthy been a supporter of the demise penalty in probably the most heinous instances, I’ve by no means seen a extra troubling case.”
Learn the press launch issued by the coalition of lawmakers beneath.
83 Texas State Representatives Urge Board of Pardons & Paroles: Spare Melissa Lucio
(March 28, 2022 — Austin, TX) A bipartisan group of Texas legislators led by Representatives Jeff Leach (R–Plano) and Joe Moody (D–El Paso) held a press convention on March 24, 2022, on the Capitol urging clemency or a reprieve for Melissa Lucio, who’s scheduled for execution on April 27, 2022. Leach and Moody co-chair the Felony Justice Reform Caucus and had been just lately appointed chair and vice chair of the Interim Research Committee on Felony Justice Reform by Speaker Dade Phelan.
“There’s merely an excessive amount of doubt about whether or not Melissa Lucio is responsible, and even whether or not against the law occurred within the first place,” Leach mentioned. “She was convicted primarily based on discredited forensics and the testimony of a medical expert who didn’t comply with protocol and put one other harmless individual in jail simply two months after Melissa.”
Moody highlighted Lucio’s spiritual conversion. “It’s all the time essential to steadiness justice with mercy. As a training Catholic, I understand how highly effective a flip to religion will be, and whoever Melissa was when she entered our system, her devotion and ministry make it clear that she’s now a special one who’s earned a measure of grace.”
“We will’t have any confidence in how this investigation unfolded,” mentioned Texas Home Dean Senfronia Thompson (D–Houston), “Melissa’s so-called confession got here after greater than 5 hours of brutal interrogation of a girl whose historical past exhibits she’s weak to giving the sorts of false confessions we see in a 3rd of all wrongful convictions.”
“We needs to be listening to the household of the deceased right here,” Rafael Anchía (D–Dallas) argued. “This was a tragedy, however these individuals who the State of Texas is meant to be searching for justice for are all telling us that executing Melissa will simply additional traumatize them.”
James White (R–Hillister) centered on the poor illustration Lucio acquired. “Everybody has a proper to a reliable protection in our state. Melissa didn’t get that. When you could have legal professionals dealing with a capital homicide who haven’t even tried a prison case earlier than, that’s an issue, so it’s no shock that lots of our Fifth Circuit’s judges discovered she didn’t get a good trial.”
“I feel the entire system failed Melissa each step of the best way,” mentioned Lacey Hull (R–Houston). “CPS didn’t adequately intervene after quite a few stories Melissa was being abused by her husband, a corrupt DA who’s now in jail pushed this prosecution for pollical causes, and Melissa’s husband, who had a violent historical past, obtained solely 4 years in jail whereas she obtained a demise sentence. What occurred right here is unsuitable.”
Every of those Home members had been among the many 83 Texas legislators who signed on to a letter final week urging the Board of Pardons and Paroles to behave. The preliminary suggestion for clemency will probably be within the fingers of the board however should then be authorized by the governor.