Nov. 10 (UPI) — A number of trial jurors within the case of a Texas man convicted of killing a married couple greater than 20 years in the past requested President Donald Trump to commute his dying sentence Tuesday.
Brandon Bernard, 40, is scheduled to be executed Dec. 10 on the U.S. Penitentiary Terre Haute, Ind. He is one among a number of dying row inmates to be scheduled for deadly injection this yr after the U.S. Justice Division resumed federal executions this summer season.
Bernard was sentenced to dying in 2000 for the 1999 deaths of Todd Bagley and Stacie Bagley, married youth ministers.
Prosecutors mentioned the Bagleys gave Bernard and and confederate a journey of their automobile, however the males held the couple at gunpoint and put them within the trunk of the automobile. They stole the couple’s cash and a marriage ring earlier than parking the automobile at Fort Hood Military base and taking pictures each victims within the head, killing Todd Bagley. They set the automobile on hearth, killing Stacie Bagley by smoke inhalation.
As a result of the murders came about on a navy reservation, they have been thought of federal offenses.
An confederate, Christopher Vialva, was executed for his position.
Of their clemency petition, 5 jurors requested Trump to think about Bernard’s age on the time of the crime — 19 — his clear jail document, his regret and outreach work whereas incarcerated. They requested for his dying sentence to be commuted to life in jail.
Jury foreman Calvin Kruger mentioned that whereas the trial proof confirmed that Bernard is “responsible past any doubt” of the murders, “it additionally clearly confirmed that Brandon Bernard was not the ringleader behind these offenses, however a follower.”
He additionally mentioned he did not imagine Bernard’s legal professional “did a superb job in defending him.”
“To me, it appeared like his attorneys have been going by way of the motions and nothing extra.”
Two different jurors agreed with Kruger’s evaluation of the trial legal professional.
Mark Bezy, a former federal Bureau of Prisons warden, mentioned he helps clemency due to Bernard’s document of excellent conduct. He mentioned that “ought to Bernard’s dying sentence be commuted, the might and would perform exceptionally effectively in a less-restrictive surroundings with out posing any threat to institutional safety and good order, or posing any threat to the protection and safety of workers, inmates or others.”
U.S. Lawyer Common William Barr resumed federal executions in July after a 17-year hiatus. Daniel Lewis Lee, Wesley Purkey and Dustin Honken have been executed in July; Lezmond Mitchell and Keith Dwayne Nelson in August; and William LeCroy and Vialva in September.