skip to main content
skip to newscasts

Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Public News Service Logo
facebook instagram linkedin reddit youtube twitter
view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

ND makes the grade in a national report evaluating public school support; SCOTUS justices express free speech concerns about GOP-backed social media laws; NH "kids on campus" program boosts retention; proposed law bans hemp sales to Hoosiers younger than 21.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

The Supreme Court hears arguments on whether social media can restrict content. Biden advisors point to anti-democracy speeches at CPAC, and the President heads to the US-Mexico border appealing to voters on immigration and border issues.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

David meets Goliath in Idaho pesticide conflict, to win over Gen Z voters, candidates are encouraged to support renewable energy and rural America needs help from Congress to continue affordable internet programs.

Report: Racial Bias Prevalent When TX Man Sentenced to Death

play audio
Play

Thursday, March 14, 2013   

AUSTIN, Texas - Advocates for a Texas man on death row filed a petition on Wednesday seeking a new sentencing hearing, pointing to just-released research on racial bias when his execution was ordered. The analysis looked at some 500 cases in Harris County around the time of Duane Buck's sentencing. It found the death penalty was much more likely for blacks, according to Christina Swarns with the NAACP Legal Defense Fund.

"For African American defendants like Mr. Buck, the Harris County District Attorney's office was three times more likely to seek death than for similarly situated white offenders, and Harris County juries were twice as likely to impose the death sentences for offenders like Mr. Buck than they were for similarly situated white offenders," she said.

The petition cites a promise to Buck made more than a decade ago. His attorney, Kate Black, says the promise was made because the prosecution elicited race-based testimony at several sentencings, Buck's included.

"In 2000, then (Texas) Attorney General John Cornyn looked at cases in which the expert who testified at Mr. Buck's trial testified in a number of other trials and found that there was Constitutional error in seven cases," Black said. "In six of the cases, those individuals received new sentencing hearings. Mr. Buck is now the only person who has not received a new sentencing hearing."

Harris County District Attorney spokeswoman Sara Kinney noted that current District Attorney Mike Anderson has been in office for only three months and said Buck can seek the legal remedies available to him.

"Mike has given Mr. Buck an opportunity to have his case presented again to the Criminal Court of Appeals here in Texas," she said, "but they have done that before and the Criminal Court of Appeals agreed with the United States Supreme Court that race was not a factor in the sentencing."

Kinney also noted that under the current process, the district attorney reviews each possible death penalty case without knowing the race of the accused.

Buck was convicted in 1997 of killing his former girlfriend and another man. A decision on the petition is expected within the next couple of months. If it is denied, prosecutors have said they will seek to have an execution date scheduled.

More information is available at http://bit.ly/Z0fmjP.






get more stories like this via email

more stories
A new report shows that people who complete Prop 47-funded programs like those offered at Safe Harbor Recovery Center in Los Angeles are much less likely to be reincarcerated. (Safe Harbor)

Social Issues

play sound

Programs intended to reduce the chances that someone will end up back behind bars are working, according to a new analysis of California state data…


Social Issues

play sound

Arizona is gearing up for its presidential preference election that takes place in less than a month, and registered Democrats and Republicans were …

play sound

You might say "every day is 'bring your child to college day'" at New Hampshire's Manchester Community College. On-campus childcare programs are …


Social Issues

play sound

The number of Black mothers in Ohio who die during or following pregnancy continues to climb and health advocates said they hope to shine a light on t…

Legislative supporters say had South Dakota taken part in a new federally funded summer meal program for low-income families, an estimated 54,000 children around the state would have benefited. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

play sound

It's been an uphill battle for childhood nutrition advocates to advance meal access policies in the South Dakota Legislature. However, organizers say …

Environment

play sound

A cooperative effort has seeded more than 26,000 acres in eastern Nevada. It's all in an effort to increase desirable grasses, forbs and shrubs while …

Social Issues

play sound

Texas postal customers, especially in rural areas, are experiencing delays in mail delivery, and some letter carriers feel it could get worse…

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021