MISE À DAY
An American is to be executed in Texas on Thursday, more than 30 years after a quadruple murder linked to drug trafficking, which he denies having committed.
Arthur Brown Jr., 52, must receive a lethal injection in the evening in the penitentiary of Huntsville.
If justice does not grant him a respite at the last minute, he will become the 5th death row inmate executed since the beginning of the year in this vast conservative state in the South very committed to the death penalty, and the 8th in the United States.
According to the prosecution, he went in 1992 with two accomplices to the home of his drug supplier in Houston. After tying up the six occupants of the premises, they shot them in the back of the head.
Four of their victims, including a minor and a pregnant woman, died and two survived.
Arthur Brown Junior was arrested four months later and sentenced to death in 1994, although he always claimed his innocence.
His alleged accomplices were also convicted for these murders: one of them was executed in 2006 and the other is serving a life sentence.
As the application of his sentence, Mr. Brown's lawyers have redoubled their efforts to try to save him.
Pointing to concerns with the investigation which according to them is based on unreliable testimony, they claimed, in vain , new DNA expertise.
They also asked the Supreme Court of the United States, which prohibited the execution of people suffering from severe mental retardation, to suspend the execution on this ground . The High Court's decision remained pending in the morning.
Their arguments won the support of British billionaire Richard Branson who, on the Virgin website, calls for “stopping the execution” of Arthur Brown Jackson.
According to him, new evidence points to another suspect and “his intellectual disability should be reason enough not to proceed with the execution”.