Thursday, April 26, 2012

Supreme Court grants hearing for Death Row's Timothy Howard

Posted By on Thu, Apr 26, 2012 at 9:21 AM

GETS NEW HEARING: Timothy Howard.
  • GETS NEW HEARING: Timothy Howard.
The Arkansas Supreme Court has ordered a further hearing on the DNA claim of a Death Row inmate, Timothy Howard, that state suppression of critical problems with DNA evidence prejudiced his fair trial.

Howard was convicted in Little River County in 1998 of the slayings of Brian and Shannon Day and sentenced to die. His latest appeal detailed numerous problems in DNA evidence — from a hair and blood gathered in the investigation — and that the state withheld information about problems with the evidence. The Supreme Court agreed important information had been withheld, whether purposely or inadvertently, and that it had a bearing in his conviction.

The Supreme Court sai, it could not decide as a matter of law whether Howard had raised the issue in a timely fashion because some of the medical evidence was available at trial. It ordered the Little River Circuit Court to consider whether Howard's attorneys had exercised due diligence in seeking relief, based on what information was available, when it was available and what information was concealed.

The Supreme Court also addressed seven other pieces of evidence helpful to Howard that the defense said had not been properly considered. In all but one case, the court said the issues had been adequately considered, but found in the case of some physical evidence — wood particles that didn't match the prosecution theory of the case — might be material and should also be considered for admission. The Court also wants the court to consider the state's failure to provide information that showed Howard had been abused as a child so that it could be used in mitigating his punishment during that phase of the trial.

This case, has been written about extensively by the Times' Mara Leveritt, most recently in a report on this coming decision.

There have been doubts about the Howard case from the first. The Supreme Court, in his original appeal, split 4-3 on affirming it. The three dissenters strongly challenged the sufficiency of the evidence and the majority's opinion, which relied on Howard's strange behavior as the most incriminating evidence.

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Favorite

Speaking of...

Comments (2)

Showing 1-2 of 2

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-2 of 2

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • Photographer pleads in Internet stalking case

    The U.S. attorney's office announced today that Christian Trey Ashcraft, 41, of White Hall had entered a negotiated plea to Internet stalking and a charge of lying to a federal agent had been dropped. He'll be sentenced later. The maximum sentence is five years.
    • Feb 22, 2017
  • Wednesday: An open line and news roundup

    An open line and the roundup of news and comment.
    • Feb 22, 2017
  • NRA opposes campus carry bill as amended

    The NRA, which calls most shots on gun bills in Arkansas, now opposes the campus carry bill primarily because it adds an additional training requirement before anyone 25 and older can take a concealed weapon on a public college campus.
    • Feb 22, 2017
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Farewell to a school teacher, Susan Turner Purvis

    A tribute to a great school teacher, Susan Turner Purvis, who died yesterday. Far too soon.
    • Jul 17, 2015
  • Lawyers plead for mercy in Fort Smith forum shopping case

    Twelve of the lawyers facing punishment by federal Judge P.K. Holmes in Fort Smith for moving a class action case against an insurance company out of his court to a state court where it was speedily settled have filed their argument against sanctions.
    • Jun 16, 2016
  • Monticello preparing for KKK rally

    Drew County authorities are taking precautions, but also watching their words, about apparent plans for a Ku Klux Klan meeting Saturday.
    • Jul 22, 2015

Most Shared

Visit Arkansas

"Locally Labeled" passport expands to accommodate booming brew scene

"Locally Labeled" passport expands to accommodate booming brew scene

As if great beer weren't reward enough, you can earn prizes for sampling local craft beverages

Most Viewed

  • Cotton seeks friendlies for town hall

    Is Tom Cotton working to pack his town hall Wednesday in Springdale with fans. So says one source.
  • NRA opposes campus carry bill as amended

    The NRA, which calls most shots on gun bills in Arkansas, now opposes the campus carry bill primarily because it adds an additional training requirement before anyone 25 and older can take a concealed weapon on a public college campus.
  • House committee approves vote suppression amendment

    A House committee today talked about stripping colleges and the Highway Department of power and tightening procedures on constitutional amendments but in the end voted as Chairman Bob Ballinger orchestrated and expected — to put a Voter ID amendment on the 2018 ballot.
  • Prosecutor Cody Hiland says analysis indicates Damascus is a speed trap

    Prosecuting Attorney Cody Hiland has announced completion of a State Police analysis of Damascus police speed limit enforcement and concluded that statistics indicate tickets are written in excess of limits in law that define speed traps.
  • City board squelches Little Rock school talk

    A letter from Little Rock school activist Dr. Anika Whitfield happens to underscore a point I made earlier today — and in a column to be published this week. It lays some of the school district's problems on benign neglect, and sometimes malice, of the Little Rock City Board.

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation