[Deathpenalty] death penatly news----KENTUCKY
rhalperi at mail.smu.edu
Wed Aug 15 21:25:28 CDT 2007
Inmate gets new death sentence appeal
A Kentucky death row inmate will get a second chance to challenge his
conviction and sentence in federal court.
The 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati sent the case of
Ronnie Lee Bowling back to a federal judge today.
The decision, written by Judge Alice Batchelder, said U.S. District Judge
Danny Reeves shouldn't have dismissed Bowling's appeal on grounds that he
also was challenging his convictions in state court.
"The court erred by dismissing the petition and refusing to accept its
duly authorized jurisdiction," Batchelder wrote for a three-judge panel.
In a concurring opinion, senior Judge Gilbert Merritt said Reeves
misinterpreted the law.
"It is no wonder because the law is a morass of inconsistent, intersecting
doctrines," Merritt wrote.
Bowling, 39, is awaiting execution for the 1989 murders of Ronald L.
Smith, 28, and Marvin Hensley, 48, in Laurel County. He has challenged his
conviction in both state and federal court, raising different issues in
Reeves dismissed Bowling's federal case, saying the law didn't allow him
to challenge the conviction in both state and federal courts at the same
But the appeals court ruled that, as long as Bowling raised different
claims in each challenge, he could pursue them at both levels.
The case now returns to U.S. District Court in London.
(source: Associated Press)
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