Micah Brown – white, age 32

Sentenced to death in Hunt County, Texas
By: a jury
Date of crime:  7/20/11
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Brown shot and killed his ex-wife, Stella Michelle “Doc” Ray by shooting Ray in the head with a 20-gauge shotgun.  Brown testified that he had been up for three days using methamphetamine, cocaine, marijuana and alcohol prior to the shooting.  The defense urged the jury to consider Brown’s drastic personality changes due to his escalating drug addictions.
Sources: Greenville Herald-Banner (Tex.) 5/24/13, 5/25/13, 5/29/13.

Obel Cruz-Garcia – Latino, age 25

Sentenced to death in Harris County, Texas
By: a jury
Date of crime:  9/30/92
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Cruz-Garcia was convicted of kidnapping and killing 6-year-old Angelo Garcia Jr.  After breaking into a south Houston apartment where Angelo lived with his mother and stepfather, sexually assaulting the mother and tying the couple up, Cruz-Garcia and two other men drove Angelo out to a lake where he was stabbed and his body weighted down.  Cruz-Garcia fled to Puerto Rico within 36 hours of the abduction and was only returned to Texas years later. Prosecutors relied on additional evidence, including Cruz-Garcia’s DNA that was found on Angelo’s mother.  The defense claimed the DNA only proved a sexual relationship, not a rape.
Sources: Houston Chronicle 7/16/13.

Franklin Davis – black, age 30

Sentenced to death in Dallas County, Texas
By: a jury
Date of crime:  9/6/12
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Davis was sentenced to death after admitting to shooting teenage babysitter, Shania Gray, two times and then stepping on her throat to stop her breathing.  Davis was set to stand trial for sexually assaulting Gray prior to the murder.  Prosecutors stated that Davis would be a future danger, presenting evidence of Davis’ history of violent assaults against women as well as a brief escape from sheriff’s custody.  Defense attorneys urged the jury to consider Davis’ violent, drug-ridden childhood and not base their verdict on emotion.
Sources: Dallas Morning News 11/13/13, 11/15/13, 11/17/13.

Bartholomew Granger’s – black, age 41

Sentenced to death in Jefferson County, Texas
By: a jury
Date of crime:  3/14/12
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Granger was sentenced to death for killing bystander, 79-year-old Minnie Ray Sebolt, while attempting to shoot his daughter, Samantha Jackson, and her mother, Claudia Jackson, outside a courthouse for testifying against him in a sexual assault case involving his daughter.  Granger admitted to shooting his daughter and running her over with his pickup truck after realizing she was still moving.  The daughter was in a coma for three months but survived.
Sources: AP DataStream 5/8/13; Beaumont Enter. (Tex.) 5/7/13.

James Harris, Jr. – black, age 52

Sentenced to death in Brazoria County, Texas
By: a jury
Date of crime:  1/14/12
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Harris was sentenced to death for forcefully entering a couple’s home and stabbing the wife with a pocketknife.  Harris then began stabbing the husband as he entered to help.  The couple was then tied up and Harris left stealing their vehicle.
Sources: Texas Dep’t. of Corrections website.

Willie Jenkins – black, age 22

Sentenced to death in Hays County, Texas
By: a jury
Date of crime:  11/24/75
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Jenkins was sentenced to death for strangling, drowning and sexually assaulting Cheryl Ann Norris in November of 1975.  This cold case was eventually solved by DNA evidence. By the time Jenkins was identified,  he was under civil commitment as a sexual predator in California.  Police named Jenkins a suspect in three separate unsolved murders following the sentencing.  The defense asked the jury to spare Jenkins’ life arguing that his difficult childhood, in addition to sexual predation by his ex-wife (fifteen years his senior) mitigated the crime.  Prosecutors outlined Jenkins’ previous sexual assault convictions and presented fellow inmates’ testimony as to Jenkins’ recurrent violent behavior.
Sources: 4/3/11 San Marcos Daily Rec. (San Marcos, Tex.) 4/3/11; Austin Am.-Statesman 6/14/13; 7/10/13 U-Wire.

Matthew Johnson – black, age 36

Sentenced to death in Dallas County, Texas
By: a jury
Date of crime:  5/20/12
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Johnson murdered 76-year-old Nancy Harris during a robbery where he doused Harris in lighter fluid but held off setting her on fire until he stole her ring and she opened the cash register.  Defense counsel stated that Johnson suffered from severe depression as well as a drug problem and did not intend to set Harris on fire.  Prosecutors argued that Johnson had a criminal record dating back to 1993 and that he fully intended to set the victim on fire, as evidenced by the video surveillance that captured the sequence of events.
Sources: Dallas Morning News 10/31/13, 11/6/13.

Albert Love, Jr. – black, age 24

Sentenced to death in McLennan County, Texas
By: a jury
Date of crime:  3/28/11
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Love, a member of the Bloods street gang, was sentenced to death for his involvement in the shootings of Tyus Sneed and Keenan Hubert.  Sneed, Hubert, and two other men were sitting in a car at an apartment complex when Love and codefendants shot the vehicle more than 20 times.  Defense counsel presented expert testimony describing a brain injury Love suffered, arguing that the injury impaired his decision-making abilities.  The prosecution stated that revenge was a motive in the killings.
Sources: Texas Dep’t. of Corrections website; Kxxv.com website 7/19/13.

Naim Muhammad – black, age 32

Sentenced to death in Dallas County, Texas
By: a jury
Date of crime:  8/22/11
Prosecution’s case/defense response: Muhammad was sentenced to death for kidnapping and drowning his two young sons, 5-year-old Naim and 3-year-old Elijah, in a shallow creek.  The prosecution contended that Muhammad killed Elijah and Naim to get back at the boys’ mother for ending their relationship.  The defense urged the jury to consider Muhammad’s childhood filled with abandonment and neglect; how his upbringing with a crack-addicted prostitute for a mother, with violence and sexual abuse in the home, warranted sparing his life.  The prosecution argued that Muhammad remained a danger to society by presenting evidence of a 20-year criminal record, including domestic violence and assault.
Sources: Dallas Morning News 5/13/13, 5/15/13, 5/16/13, 5/23/13.