The 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has again reversed a lower court and ordered another hearing on whether Alvin Jackson is sufficiently intellectually disabled to be disqualified for execution for the capital murder of prison guard Scott Grimes.
The court said the district judge who ruled against Jackson didn’t have the benefit of a subsequent U.S. Supreme Court decision on how to weigh the disability issue and it said Jackson should get a hearing on his challenge of a new diagnostic test. Competing experts testified, with the state’s indicating Jackson’s intellectual capacity hovered near the questionable mark.
Said the court:
We make no judgment as to whether or not Jackson is intellectually disabled, but find that the exacting review required in death penalty cases commands further consideration of this matter.
The decision was written by Judge Bobby Shepherd of El Dorado.
Jackson was sentenced to life in 1990 for the murder of Charles Colclasure then sentenced to death in 1996 for the killing of Grimes.
Jackson didn’t have an execution date set.