Fed panel orders review of Miss. death row case - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Fed panel orders review of Miss. death row case

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - A federal appeals panel has ruled Mississippi's process of evaluating the mental competency of death row inmates is unfair to the prisoners.

The ruling came in the case of Robert Simon Jr.

Simon was sentenced to death for the killings of 3 members of a Quitman County family. He got a life sentence in the death of a fourth family member.

The three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans said it was not saying prisoners are entitled to experts in order to make a showing of incompetency.

The panel said the procedures in Simon's case, which allowed prosecutors to present expert evaluations while Simon was prevented from presenting countervailing expert valuations, violated fundamental fairness and due process.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Powered by Frankly