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Originally posted by MaskedAvatar
No, it's not funny. Bush's drug-addled brain from years of coc aine use was not brought up much either. It's old news. When I make statements without a link, I cite verifiable facts that have been long established at ATS.
LIVINGSTON, Texas - Texas remained the most active death penalty state in 2004 with 23 executions, down from a year ago and about average for the past decade. But legal experts and death penalty opponents suggest there are signs that increased judicial scrutiny is giving pause to juries and prosecutors considering capital punishment.
Earlier this year, the Supreme Court overturned two Texas death sentences — LaRoyce Lathair Smith and Robert Tennard — because jurors were not told of the defendants' learning disabilities.
The court also lifted the death sentence of Delma Banks, condemned nearly 25 years ago, and criticized Texas officials and lower courts, saying prosecutors hid crucial information that might have helped Banks' case.
In announcing that Tucker's bid for clemency had been rejected, the chairman of the Texas parole board, Victor Rodriguez, cited the "horrific" nature of her crime.
Tucker has admitted accompanying a partner in 1983 to the Houston apartment of Jerry Lynn Dean, 27, to see if they could cap three days of almost nonstop drug-taking by stealing Dean's motorcycle.
Once inside, the partner -- Daniel Garrett, then 37 -- started beating Dean with a hammer.
When the battered man began to gurgle, Tucker, then 23, grabbed a 3-foot-long pickax and repeatedly plunged it into him.
Dean's friend, Thornton, was cowering under sheets in a corner until the intruders discovered her.
Tucker turned the ax on Thornton to eliminate her as a witness. In a tape recording played in court, she bragged to friends that she got sexual thrills out of the attack.
But given the panel's recent history, even a single vote from the 18-member panel in favor of clemency for a condemned murderer would have been unusual.
Tucker would have needed at least 10 votes, because Gov. George W. Bush may commute -- change -- a death sentence only if a majority of the board recommends it. The board unanimously rejected 16 similar requests last year.
Texas law gives governors little independent authority in such cases, with the power to issue only a one-time, 30-day reprieve.