Document - USA: Further information: Texas executes inmate for crime at age 19: Bobby Hines

URGENT ACTION

Further information on UA: 311/12 Index: AMR 51/090/2012 USA Date: 25 October 2012

URGENT ACTION

TEXAS EXECUTES INMATE FOR CRIME AT AGE 19�Forty-year-old Bobby Hines was executed in Texas on 24 October for a murder committed when he was 19.

In 1992, Bobby Hines (then 19) was convicted of the murder of Michelle Haupt during a burglary in 1991. At his sentencing hearing, which lasted a day, his jury heard some information about his childhood of severe abuse, poverty and neglect, but no expert testimony was presented as to how it had affected his conduct. An expert who reviewed the case after the trial concluded that the mitigating factors in his case were “numerous and complex”, including youth, low intellectual functioning, impaired adaptive functioning, and issues of “complex trauma” relating to abuse, abandonment, rejection, poverty and neglect. She added that the failure of the trial lawyers to present expert testimony deprived the jurors of “critical mitigating factors that could have impacted their decision whether to sentence Bobby to life or death”.

On 15 October 2012, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals refused to issue a stay of execution and rejected an appeal to allow Bobby Hines back into the courts to argue that he had been denied adequate legal representation at his trial. The Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles denied clemency and Governor Rick Perry did not exercise his power of reprieve.

In his final statement before being killed, Bobby Hines asked for forgiveness from Michelle Haupt’s family. "I know that I took somebody special from y'all. I know it wasn't right, it was wrong. I wish I could give it back, but I know I can't. I wish there was something I could do."

He was put to death with a lethal dose of pentobarbital, and pronounced dead at 6.28pm on 24 October.

After witnessing the execution, the father of Michelle Haupt was quoted in the media as saying that “Bobby Hines paid the ultimate price, a life for a life, and that's the good news. The bad news is it took 21 years, a lot of taxpayer money and all he did was go to sleep. He didn't suffer like my daughter did. He got like a forever sleeping pill."

This execution was the 33rd in the USA this year, 11 of which have been carried out in Texas. There have now been 1,310 executions in the USA since judicial killing resumed there in 1977, after the US Supreme Court ruled new death penalty statutes constitutional. Texas accounts for 488 of these executions, 249 of which have taken place during the governorship of Rick Perry.

No further action is requested. Many thanks to all who sent appeals.

This is the first update of UA 311/12. Further information: http://amnesty.org/en/library/info/AMR51/088/2012/en

Name: Bobby Hines

Gender m/f: m

Further information on UA: 311/12 Index: AMR 51/090/2012 Issue Date: 25 October 2012

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