EU: ASHTON VOICES CONCERN OVER TEXAN EXECUTION
August 8, 2012: EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton voiced concern at the execution in Texas of a disabled man.
A spokesman for Ashton, EU high representative for foreign affairs and security policy and a commission vice president, said she "deeply regrets the execution" of Marvin Wilson.
Her comments come after the state of Texas executed 54-year-old Wilson by lethal injection yesterday night.
Wilson had been on death row since 1992 after being convicted for the murder of a police informant named Jerry Robert Williams, who Wilson blamed for leading authorities to his apartment, where they subsequently seized 24 grams of cocaine.
Wilson was the seventh person executed by lethal injection in Texas this year.
At least nine other prisoners in the nation's most active death penalty state have execution dates in the coming months, including one later this month.
The Texan authorities ruled that Wilson played a role in the murder of Williams and needed to be held accountable for his actions, even with diminished mental capacity.
But critics of the execution said he had the mental capacity of a first-grader, could barely match his socks and was fired from a car wash job for being too slow at drying cars.
They pointed to the fact that a clinical neuropsychologist with 22 years of experience concluded Wilson was intellectually disabled.
In a statement, Ashton's spokesman said, "The high representative recognises the serious nature of the crime involved and expresses her sincere sympathy to the surviving family and friends of the victim.
"However, she does not believe that their loss has been mitigated by Wilson's death.
"The EU opposes the use of capital punishment in all cases and under all circumstances and calls for a global moratorium as a first step towards its universal abolition. With capital punishment any miscarriage of justice, from which no legal system is immune, represents an irreversible loss of human life.'' (Sources: theparliament.com, 08/08/2012)