Mentally Disabled Man To Be Executed In Georgia On Tuesday
RT.COM - Warren Hill, a mentally handicapped man, is scheduled to be put
to death in Jackson, Georgia on Tuesday, despite protests from human
rights activists and mental health advocates around the world.
According to RT.com, Hill is reported to have an IQ of 70, putting him below the threshold for mental disability."
There is no dispute among the experts that Mr. Hill is mentally retarded," wrote Hill's attorney Brian Kammer in an appeal."
Mr. Hill's execution would be a fundamental miscarriage of justice,
this Court must stay Mr. Hill's imminent execution and vacate his death
sentence," Kammer wrote in another appeal.
After spending the
last 21 years on death row for killing a fellow inmate, Hill will be the
first person in Georgia to receive a single deadly dose of
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled against the execution
of prisoners with mental disabilities in 2002, but gave each state with
the authority to decide what exactly constitutes a mental disability.
has the strictest standard of any state when it comes to determining
mental disability, as courts require "proof of retardation beyond a
A Georgia court agreed with an appeal by Hill's lawyers, but was
overruled by a higher court, which found that Hill could not prove his
retardation beyond a reasonable doubt."
While Georgia never
contested Mr. Hill's intellectual disability or IQ of 70, he was not
able to meet the burden of proof," Eric Jacobson, the Executive Director
of the Georgia Council on Developmental Disabilities, wrote in an
online editorial this week condemning the sentence.
who had previously testified in favor of the state's position, wrote in
a statement under oath that their evaluation of Hill was "extremely and
unusually rushed" and "not conducive to an accurate assessment."
was originally serving a life sentence in prison for murdering his
girlfriend. While in prison, he killed a fellow inmate to death with a
nail-studded board, which he received the death penalty for.
His defense team has submitted new appeals, including to the U.S. Supreme Court.
world community is again watching Georgia with great concern as it
prepares to carry out another grotesque and unjust execution," wrote UN
special rapporteur Christof Heyns in a recent editorial. "There is no
sense and no honor in executing children, the insane and those who
suffer from intellectual disability."
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