Justices Clear the Way for 2 Texas Executions

Tuesday, Jan 18, 2011  |  Updated 11:15 AM CDT
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Justices Clear the Way for 2 Texas Executions

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The Texas death chamber in Huntsville.

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The Supreme Court has rejected appeals from two Texas death row inmates whose executions the court had previously blocked.

In denying appeals Tuesday from former Army recruiter Cleve Foster and Gayland Bradford, the justices cleared the way for the state to schedule new execution dates for the two men.

Last week, the court stopped Foster's lethal injection hours before he was to die for a rape and killing in Ft. Worth nine years ago.

Foster, 47, has insisted a friend was responsible for fatally shooting 30-year-old Nyaneur Pal, who had fled Sudan for Texas. The friend, Sheldon Ward, one of Foster's recruits, also was condemned for the slaying. He died of cancer last year while in prison. Foster's lawyers said the evidence did not support his conviction.

In October, Justice Antonin Scalia granted a reprieve to Bradford, 42, who was sentenced to death in 1990 for the slaying of Brian Edward Williams at Angelo’s Food Store in Dallas in 1988.

Bradford's attorney argued that the trial court appointed an inexperienced and underqualified lawyer to handle some of Bradford's earlier appeals. Bradford was 20 at the time of the shooting and on parole for robbery. 

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