In early November activist Shaun King along with others petitioned to stop the execution of a man named Rodney Reed who was convicted for the murder of Stacey Stites in Bistrop Texas almost 22 years ago. Rodney Reed’s execution was scheduled for November 20th, although nearly 3 million people signed the petition asking the governor of Texas to let him go.
Shortly after signing the petition people began to take to social media to express that they felt as though they were coerced into believing that Mr. Reed is innocent. Shaun King explains in an interview with blackamericaweb.com that it was the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles who in fact voted unanimously to stop Rodney’s execution after looking at the evidence that they were presented with. King then went on to explain that the board made their decision after viewing the evidence and issued a five page opinion on why they needed to cancel Mr. Reed’s execution date.
This will give the board time to examine new evidence that has been brought to light and the court will have the chance to decide if the prosecution broke the law when Rodney Reed was convicted in 1998. King explains that Brady violations may have been used in this case and that the prosecution could’ve had evidence that would have exonerated Mr. Reed, but may have been hidden in order to win their case. Since Rodney’s trial there has been substantial evidence exonerating Rodney and yet bringing another possible suspect into light. Jimmy Fennel a former police officer and Stacey Stites’ fiance at the time is now being questioned for Stacey’s murder.
Shaun King then explains that Rodney Reed may have been in fact framed for the murder of Stacey Stites. King also explains how he feels that if the police and prosecutors were able to frame someone for a murder and allow the person to go to death row for a crime that they did not commit, then he wouldn’t believe anything they’d have to say. King is willing to continue to fight for Rodney Reed in order to prove his innocence despite how long it may take.
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