Detained Student Activist Released!
On 7 April, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals issued a stay of execution in the case of Paul Storey, who was scheduled to be put to death on 12 April. The case has been remanded to a lower court for further review of the claim that the prosecution presented false evidence at the trial.
After more than 13 years since Huang Zhiqiang, Fang Chunping, Cheng Fagen and Cheng Lihe were originally sentenced to death, the Jiangxi Provincial Higher People’s Court has announced a not-guilty verdict. All four men were immediately released after a closed-door retrial on 30 November 2016.
On 2 December, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals issued a stay of execution to John Battaglia, a 61-year-old man who was scheduled to be executed in Texas on 7 December. The stay is for the Court to be able to review the question of his mental competence.
On 19 August, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals granted a stay of execution to Jeffery Wood, who was scheduled to be executed in Texas on 24 August. He was sentenced to death in 1998 for a murder committed during a robbery of a convenience store in 1996. He was sitting in a truck outside the store when the murder took place.