Justice for Louis Castro Perez!
The 5th Circuit Court has released an opinion denying relief to innocent Texas death row prisoner Louis Castro Perez. Many folks will be familiar with the case through Louis' sister, Delia Perez Meyer, who sits on the board of the Campaign to End the Death Penalty.
Delia has been a tireless advocate for her brother and all death row prisoners. She has travelled the world in the fight to win death penalty abolition. For some time, Louis has been fighting to win DNA testing of several items found at the crime scene that contain the DNA of an unknown person, including on a bloody towel wrapped around a knife found at the crime scene! For more facts about the physical evidence and issue in this case please check out: http://nodeathpenalty.
org/get-the-facts/justice- louis-castro-perez-test-all- dna
The latest appeal for Louis was based on an issue of ineffective assistance of counsel. The 5th Circuit had previously rendered a judgement denying Louis relief. His lawyer then had 30 days to respond, however, she failed to respond to a 30 day deadline for filing a new motion with the district court. In fact this attorney received notification of the deadline and without alerting Louis or the other consulting attorney on the case, she decided on her own not to respond to the motion, effectively abandoning her client.
In March of 2012, after being made aware of the error, the court granted a motion to allow Louis to reenter the appeal that his lawyer should have made. However, late last week the 5th Circuit vacated that order, and has decided to let the original judgement of denial of relief stand.
You can read the whole transcript of the judgement here.
We will continue to fight for justice for Louis Castro Perez and against any execution date!
The full judgement from the 5th Circuit can be read here.