1. Whether it violates the Eighth Amendment and this Court’s decisions in Hall v. Florida, 134 S. Ct. 1986 (2014) and Atkins v. Virginia, 536 U.S. 304 (2002) to prohibit the use of current medical standards on intellectual disability, and require the use of outdated medical standards, in determining whether an individual may be executed.
2. Whether execution of a condemned individual more than three-and-one-half decades after the imposition of a death sentence violates the Eighth Amendment’s prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment.
DECISIONDecided March 28, 2017 HOLDING
By rejecting the habeas court’s application of medical guidance and by following the Briseno standard, including the nonclinical Briseno factors, the CCA’s decision does not comport with the Eighth Amendment and this Court’s precedents.
GINSBURG, J., delivered the opinion of the Court, in which KENNEDY, BREYER, SOTOMAYOR, and KAGAN, JJ., joined. ROBERTS, C. J., filed a dissenting opinion, in which THOMAS and ALITO, JJ., joined.
ORAL ARGUMENTArgued November 29, 2016
CERTIORARI STAGEGranted June 6, 2016
Certiorari Stage Documents
Petition for Certiorari (pdf download)
Brief in Opposition (pdf download)
Petitioner's Reply (pdf download)
Other Certiorari Stage Documents
Amicus Brief of The American Academy of Phychiatry and the Law, et al supporting Petition for Certiorari (pdf download)
Amicus Brief of International Law and Human Rights Institutes, Societies, Practitioners and Scholars supporting Petition for Ce (pdf download)
Amicus Brief of International Organizations Interested in Medical Expertise, Psychiatry and Criminal Justice supporting Petitio (pdf download)
Amicus Brief of The National Religious Campaign Against Torture, et al supporting Petition for Certiorari (pdf download)
Amicus Brief of Constitutional Accountability Center supporting Petition for Certiorari (pdf download)
Court of Criminal Appeals of Texas
Decided September 16, 2015
|June 6, 2016||Supreme Court Declines to Decide How Long Is Too Long on Death Row||Pete Williams||NBC News|
SUPREME PODCAST COVERAGE
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|2016-12-03||Use of Current Medical Standards to Revisit Prior Disability Determinations in Death Penalty Cases||Oral Argument||go to coverage|