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On Tuesday February 19, convicted murderer Warren Hill, was given a stay of execution, a mere 30 minutes before the scheduled event.
A key issue in this ongoing saga, is the efficacy of putting to death, a man who’d been declared “intellectually disabled” by nine “specialists”. It should be noted however, that the Supreme Court leaves it up to the states, to define this condition. It just so happens that the state of Georgia requires this be established “beyond reasonable doubt”, a standard deemed unreasonable by many, including Hill’s lawyer, Brian Kammer.
Of course, this issue brings to light deep divides with regards to the death penalty, in general, and on another level, the role that race and class play in this dynamic.
But it should be noted, that not only did Hill murder his girlfriend, Myra Wright in 1986, shooting her 11 times, for which he received a life sentence, but killed Joseph Handspike, an inmate serving a life sentence in the same southwest Georgia prison where he was incarcerated. Hill bludgeoned Handspike to death with a nail-studded wooden board as Handspike lay in his bed.
We will discuss the Hill case in depth, exploring the pros and cons of not only his pending execution, but the death penalty in general.
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