Clarence Thomas Isn’t Happy Supreme Court Overturned Black Man’s Murder Conviction
- Author: Jon Douglas Jun 24, 2019,
Jun 24, 2019, 0:39
Doug Evans, the Winona district attorney who prosecuted Flowers is said to have a history of racial bias in the jury selection process. Overall, the numbers were 41 of 42, he noted.
Justice Clarence Thomas, the only black justice on the Supreme Court, and Justice Neil Gorsuch, who was named to the court by President Donald Trump, dissented with the decision. Over the course of the first four trials, there were 36 black prospective jurors against whom the State could have exercised a peremptory strike.
Curtis Flowers was tried six times for the 1996 murder of four furniture store employees in Winona, Mississippi, NBC reports. And the MS high court in the 2010 case deferred to a judge's finding that Evans had nondiscriminatory reasons for striking the black jurors - because they had ties to Flowers or had been sued by Tardy Furniture, for instance.
"A seventh trial would be unprecedented, and completely unwarranted given both the flimsiness of the evidence against him and the long trail of misconduct that has kept him wrongfully incarcerated all these years". He told reporters for American Public Media's "In the Dark" podcast that he hadn't decided whether to try Flowers again, but remained confident of his guilt.
Flowers has been in custody since 1996. It turns out, the U.S. Supreme Court agrees, announcing today that it is reversing Flowers's murder conviction and throwing out his death sentence. Flowers was found guilty in the other three, but appeals courts lifted those convictions because of misconduct on Evans's part.
Kavanaugh made clear the case breaks "no new legal ground" but rather enforces existing precedent.
Defense attorneys could also seek to remove Evans and state court Judge Joseph Loper from the case.
U.S. prosecutors are able to dismiss a limited number of potential jurors at the start of a case without stating a reason, but a 1986 Supreme Court ruling made it illegal to do so on the basis of race.
But in Batson, the Supreme Court said the challenges could not be used to strike a potential juror because of his or her race.
Plant life, who had no criminal document, changed into as soon as charged with the killings in section attributable to he had like a flash worked on the retailer and changed into as soon as fired several days before. A week earlier, Kavanaugh sided with liberals in a 5-4 decision that he wrote, ruling that Apple could be sued by iPhone owners over high prices in their App Store.
The justices weighed Evans' history of striking African-American jurors. On the sixth trial, furthermore, the Suppose engaged in dramatically disparate questioning of black and white doable jurors. Those are called peremptory strikes, and they have been the focus of the complaints about discrimination. The big issue: The justices found that Evans improperly removed black people from juries.
Thomas, the only black Supreme Court justice and one of its most conservative members, asked his first questions during an oral argument in three years when the case was argued in March.
If you listened to the second season of American Public Media's In the Dark and are a thinking person with a functioning soul, you were undoubtedly appalled at the treatment of Curtis Flowers by the MS legal system.
What did the US Supreme Court decision scream?
"The majority's opinion is so manifestly incorrect that I must proceed to the merits", Thomas wrote.
Gorsuch did not join sections of Thomas' opinion in which Thomas criticized the Batson decision.
Kristen Clarke, president of the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law civil rights group, said the ruling should "sound an alarm" for prosecutors who engage in racial discrimination during jury selection.