08 January 2019 :
Supreme Court rules lower court erred in setting aside death penalty for Hill. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that a February 2 (see) decision from the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati that set aside the death penalty for Danny L. Hill was made in error and sent the case back to the 6th Circuit for further review. The top court said the 6th Circuit’s reliance on a 2017 case in making its decision on whether Hill, 51, was too intellectually disabled to be executed was “plainly improper ... and we therefore vacate that decision and remand so that Hill’s claim regarding intellectual disability can be evaluated based solely on holdings of this court that were clearly established at the relevant time.” The U.S. Supreme Court was expected only to decide on whether to review the lower court’s decision, but it instead took the unusual step of deciding the matter outright. The top court said the appeals court should not have relied on a case that had not been decided at the time Visiting Judge Thomas P. Curran in Trumbull County Common Pleas Court ruled that Hill was not too intellectually disabled to be executed. Hill and co-defendant Timothy Combs killed Raymond Fife, 12, in 1985, by brutally assaulting, raping and setting fire to him in a field off of Palmyra Road in Warren.