Monday, 5 July 2010

Texas to execute British woman: the Linda Carty case

The United States Supreme Court has denied an appeal by Linda Carty against her sentence of death by the Texas courts - see here.  The case is also highlighted by the CharonQC blog.  The U.S. authorities failed to inform the U.K. government about Carty's case.  That is, in itself, a serious breach of normal diplomatic relationships intended to enable consular assistance to those accused of crimes.  It also appears that Linda Carty was represented by incompetent counsel.  To carry out an execution in those circumstances would be a travesty of justice.  The matter now rests with the Governor of Texas (Mr Rick Perry).  In the 9 years he has held the governorship, he has reprieved one person only.  His predecessor - (George W. Bush) - was notorious for refusing to exercise clemency in death penalty cases.

Since the case of Furman v Georgia 1972, the death penalty in the USA has had a complex history.  One fact is that, in recent times, the majority of executions are in southern States most notably Alabama and Texas - (Death Penalty Information Center).  Within the 47 Council of Europe States, the death penalty is now completely abolished (Protocol 13 to the European Convention for Human Rights).  The USA, as a "civilised nation", should also abandon its addiction to judicial killing.

Any reader wishing to petition in relation to the Linda Carty case may do so via the REPRIEVE website.

Here are some statistics for executions in Texas and some details for Alabama.

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