Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Within a Hair's Breadth

If testing shows the hair came from Kerry Dixon, then Texas will be the first state proven by DNA testing to have executed an innocent man. Many people would respond that The Despicable Claude Jones got only what he deserved for his other greivous offenses, but that wouldn't get Texas off the hook. Texas would have executed a man (despicable though he was) for a crime he didn't commit.

On 11 June, Judge Paul Murphy ruled that Texas must release the critical 1" hair segment to those who would have it tested. No word yet whether Judge Murphy's decision will be appealed. If appealed, matters could drag on for a bit. If not, testing might be completed in relatively short order.

Given that Rick Perry is already feeling the wrongful execution walls closing in around him, due to the execution of Cameron Todd Willingham and the near execution of Henry Watkins Skinner, this latest ruling adds to the Governor's stess level somewhat. Click here to see how well he's handling it.