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SCOTUS rejects racist jury bias claims in Andre Thomas case


Woman and man with hands clasped in front of wall

Source: Westend61 / Getty

Listen, we’re gonna tell you off top that there is a LOT, L-O-T, going on with this story so just take a moment to breathe before you dive in to the nitty-gritty. You good? Ok, here goes…

According to CBSNews, the Supreme Court has rejected a very questionable-yet-disturbing case involving a Black man and the death of his family. In 2005, Andre Thomas was charged with capital murder after killing his spouse, their 4-year-old biracial son, and his wife’s 13-month-old daughter. Why was the son biracial and the 13-month-old solely white? No idea, but the report specifically denotes this. As despicable as that is, there’s more…

Thomas attempted to remove the hearts of his slain family members in order to “set them free from evil”, says the report. He then stabbed himself in the chest and subsequently confessed to the murders to the police. However, he still pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity as his lawyers argued that their client was in the midst of a schizophrenic episode. Now, stay with us because there’s still more…

While Thomas was awaiting trial, he gouged out one of his eyes. Aht aht, don’t leave, there’s still more…

Four years later, he gouged out the other eye.

With all due respect to those suffering from mental illness, if this doesn’t legally qualify as “temporary insanity”, then what does? Despite all this, there is still more…

Andre Thomas was convicted and sentenced to death by an all-white “jury of his peers”. During jury selection, THREE of those jurors openly and unabashedly voiced opposition to both interracial relationships and interracial children! Somehow, they were STILL put on the jury and allowed to decide a Black man’s fate. SCOTUS ultimately decided not to hear the case after much campaigning by Texas officials. Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote the following dissenting opinion that was co-signed by Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson and Justice Elena Kagan:

“…hostility the jurors expressed in their questionnaire strongly suggested that their presence would infect the proceedings with racial bias.”

“By failing to challenge, or even question, jurors who were hostile to interracial marriage in a capital case involving that explosive topic, Thomas’ counsel performed well below an objective standard of reasonableness,” Sotomayor, joined by Justices Elena Kagan and Ketanji Brown Jackson, wrote. “This deficient performance prejudiced Thomas by depriving him of a fair trial.”

We’re not saying Thomas doesn’t deserve punishment for his actions but the man is obviously troubled. What does killing him accomplish?





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