AG Jim Hood: DNA would not exonerate Manning
Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood (AP)
JACKSON — Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood says a new round of DNA testing on evidence collected against death row inmate Willie Jerome Manning would not exonerate him in the 1992 deaths of two students.
Manning, now 44, is scheduled to die by lethal injection at 6 p.m. Tuesday at the state penitentiary at Parchman.
“Any time there is legitimate, exculpatory evidence, capable of DNA testing, the state is prepared to conduct testing,” Hood said in a statement released late Friday.
“However when the defense waits until the 11th hour to raise such claims, which could not possibly exonerate their client, courts are loathe to be subjected to these types of dilatory defense tactics.”
Manning, who is black, had argued that hair found in one of the victim’s cars was not proved to be his. DNA showed that the hair was from a black person, but other blacks had been seen in the car, according to trial testimony.
Hood said Manning could have had the hair tested at any time but had not.
The Mississippi Supreme Court on Thursday refused to stop the execution, in a 5-4 decision.
Manning’s lawyers have asked Gov. Phil Bryant for a stay. Bryant spokesman Mick Bullock said Friday that the governor is reviewing the case.
Manning’s attorney, David P. Voisin of Jackson, said Saturday that he’s awaiting a decision by Bryant before considering new appeals.
“I don’t have a timetable. It depends on when we would get it (Bryant’s decision) and things like that,” Voisin said.
Voisin said an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court is one of the options.
He also said Hood is missing the point on the FBI’s offer to conduct new testing.
“The first DNA testing was done at the time of the trial. We have been seeking access to this evidence to see if it was possibly testable since 2001. There’s nothing 11th hour about it,” Voisin said.
The Washington Post reported Friday (http://wapo.st/15bWdEP ) that federal officials are offering to retest the DNA in the case. Federal officials, in a letter to Mississippi officials and Voisin, said Manning’s case was part of a broad review of the FBI’s handling of scientific evidence in thousands of violent crimes in the 1980s and 1990s.
The FBI announced last year that they would seek to correct past errors in forensic hair examinations before 2000.
Voisin said Saturday that he knew the FBI was conducting a review but didn’t know when it would announce anything.
“It came out of the blue but it was good to hear,” he said.
Hood countered that Manning has repeatedly lost in the courts.
“The Mississippi Supreme Court has held that the evidence is so overwhelming as to Manning’s guilt. Even if technologies were available to determine the source of the hair, to indicate someone other than Manning, it would not negate other evidence that shows his guilt. He is a violent person who committed these heinous murders,” Hood said in the statement.
Manning was handed two death sentences for the slayings of Jon Steckler and Tiffany Miller, whose bodies were discovered in rural Oktibbeha County on Dec. 11, 1992. Each was shot to death, and Miller’s car was missing. The vehicle was found the next morning.
- Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)
- Click to print (Opens in new window)
- Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)
- Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
- Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)
- Click to Press This! (Opens in new window)
- Click to share on Google+ (Opens in new window)
- Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window)
- Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window)
About Floyd Ingram
- EDITORIAL: Demanding excellence October 20, 2016
- Signs are illegal in rights-of-way October 25, 2016
- Smithville rolls over Vardaman October 25, 2016
- MSU names Summer 2016 graduates October 25, 2016
- Collision kills two near Vardaman October 25, 2016
- Houlka aldermen hold budget hearing October 27, 2016
- County formally amends 2016 budget October 27, 2016
- Louisville edges Toppers October 27, 2016
- EDITORIAL: Red Ribbon Week October 26, 2016
- Art in the Park is Thursday October 26, 2016
- Bet Rob: I came into town over the weekend to ride part of ...
- Jim Garth Horn: Did I miss it or is there anywhere in the article ...
- Americasgone: They have a "no guns" sign on their door. If the...
- Americasgone: This has to be a joke. They have good employees an...
- Jessica Lacy: Leadershipprovides with the opportunity to lead. E...
- RT @wcbiweather: The heat index has surpassed 100 in many spots today. Stay cool out there! #mswx #alwx #wcbi http://t.co/Lt2LRZTDcm 3 years ago
- RT @dennisseid: OSHA: 24 work-related deaths in Miss. last year http://t.co/lgEYYtK7ZR 3 years ago
- Speech pathologists work to better communication skills | Monroe Journal http://t.co/lyHLvb0OS1 3 years ago
- Mumford & Sons bassist has blood clot on brain http://t.co/4xNLMhxaif 3 years ago
- Mobile home fire claims one | Itawamba Times http://t.co/FHouwxbnsp 3 years ago