Supreme Court Voids Texas Death Penalty, 6-3

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The Supreme Court ended a long legal fight by ruling that a Texas death row inmate is intellectually disabled and may not be executed, the Associated Press reports. The justices ruled 6-3 Tuesday in favor of Bobby James Moore. He had been sentenced to death for the 1980 shotgun slaying of a Houston grocery store clerk. Moore’s lawyers argued for years that Moore was intellectually disabled, but Texas’ top criminal appeals court rejected those claims, even after the Supreme Court strongly suggested in 2017 that Moore could not be executed because of his intellectual limitations.

The Houston district attorney agreed with Moore that he should be spared the death penalty. Houston prosecutors originally persuaded a jury to sentence Moore to death. Justices Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch and Clarence Thomas dissented from Tuesday’s ruling. Tuesday was the first day since December that Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, 85, returned to hear oral arguments since she was hospitalized in December for lung cancer.

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