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ARKANSAS (USA): SUPREME COURT LIFTS DEATH SENTENCE FOR CONVICTED MURDERER

November 13, 2018:

The Arkansas Supreme Court on 8 November 2018 reversed the death penalty given Kenneth Reams by a Jefferson County jury in the 1993 shooting death of Gary Turner during a robbery at an ATM machine.
The court said Reams had ineffective counsel during the penalty phase of the trial.
The decision was 5-2. Reams was sentenced to die on December 16, 1993 for the May 5, 1993 shooting death of Gary Turner. He and a friend, Alford Goodwin had waited for a target by an ATM machine.
A similar scheme had failed the previous week when an ATM user floored the gas before Goodwin and Reams could get to him. This time the pair, with a .32 pistol, were determined to get what they wanted.
Goodwin, who handled the weapon, demanded cash from the driver, Gary Turner. Turner resisted and was murdered. Goodwin got life without parole in a plea deal before Reams went to trial. Reams' attorney failed to get Goodwin's testimony in support of Reams' defense that Goodwin shot Turner, not Reams. In fact, Goodwin never admitted that he was the shooter during Reams' trial, allowing prosecutors to pose the uncertainty of the gunman's identity. Testifying for himself, Reams was the only witness at trial who could say he didn't shoot Gary Turner. In fact, he was the only witness for the defense at all during the verdict phase.
Today the Supreme Court affirmed a lower court's finding in the appeal by Reams for post-conviction relief. From the opinion: “Throughout the trial, trial counsel’s theory was that Goodwin had shot and killed Turner.
Despite this defense theory, trial counsel testified at the Rule 37 hearing that he could not talk to Goodwin because Goodwin was represented by counsel. Trial counsel testified that he did not recall whether he had approached counsel for Goodwin but that he did not have a good working relationship with Goodwin’s counsel. Trial counsel further testified that “[he didn’t] know when [Goodwin] pled in relation to Reams’s trial.” Based on the above testimony and in light of the defense’s theory that Goodwin shot Turner, there is no strategic reason not to at least investigate and attempt to present Goodwin at trial to corroborate Reams’s defense that he was not the shooter. Accordingly, we hold that trial counsel’s failure to at least attempt to present Goodwin’s testimony during the penalty phase of trial constitutes deficient performance.
The case was returned to Circuit Court for a new determination of penalty.

(Source: arktimes.com, HoC, 08/11/2018)

UAE: MAN GIVEN DEATH PENALTY AFTER KILLING COLLEAGUE WITH IRON BAR
NIGERIA: MAN TO HANG FOR KILLING FATHER OVER N56,000
BANGLADESH: FIVE SENTENCED TO DEATH OVER 2007 MURDER IN CUMILLA
INDIA: SC COMMUTES DEATH SENTENCE
EGYPT: ONE SENTENCED TO DEATH, SIX TO 10 YEARS IN 'TANTA TERRORIST CELL' CASE
IRAN: 10 PRISONERS HANGED AT RAJAEI SHAHR PRISON OF KARAJ
PAKISTAN: NORWEGIAN CITIZEN SENTENCED TO DEATH
IRAQ: IS FIGHTER WITH STRONG FAMILY LINKS TO AUSTRALIA IS SENTENCED TO DEATH
BAHRAIN: REGIME COURTS ISSUED DEATH SENTENCES FOR 32 ACTIVISTS SINCE 2011
IRAN: TWO EXECUTED FOR ECONOMIC CORRUPTION
SOMALIA: MILITARY COURT IN PUNTLAND SLAPS 4 MEN WITH DEATH PENALTY
ZAMBIA: 27-YEAR-OLD SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR MURDER OF GIRLFRIEND
IRAN: KURDISH WOMAN HANGED AT SANANDAJ PRISON
TEXAS (USA): ROBERT MORENO RAMOS EXECUTED
MALAYSIA: CABINET SCRAPS DEATH SENTENCE FOR 33 OFFENCES
SRI LANKA: TWO TO HANG FOR MURDER
EGYPT UPHOLDS DEATH SENTENCE AGAINST 80-YEAR-OLD QURAN TUTOR
UN: THIRD COMMITTEE ADOPTS RESOLUTION ON THE MORATORIUM ON THE DEATH PENALTY
IRAN EXECUTES 22 ALLEGING LINKS TO MILITARY PARADE ATTACK
BAHRAIN: COURT SENTENCES FOUR NATIONALS TO DEATH OVER TERROR CHARGES
IRAN: IRAQI CITIZEN EXECUTED ON MURDER CHARGE
VIETNAM: THREE DRUG DEALERS SENTENCED TO DEATH
KENYA: 2 BODA BODA RIDERS SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR STEALING LAPTOP
IRAN: INMATE HANGED IN ARDEKAN PRISON OF YAZD
UN HUMAN RIGHTS COMMITTEE WANTS LIBERIA REPEAL DEATH PENALTY
EGYPT: COURT OF CASSATION UPHOLDS DEATH PENALTY FOR 7 CONVICTED OF KILLING POLICEMAN
SYRIA: 11 REBELS SENTENCED TO DEATH
PAKISTAN: ATC AWARDS DEATH PENALTY FOR KIDNAPPING, MURDER
EGYPT: EIGHT ISIS JIHADISTS ARE SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR DEADLY ATTACK AGAINST SOLDIERS
EGYPT: COURT UPHOLDS DEATH SENTENCE AGAINST TODDLER RAPIST IN FINAL RULING

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