EXPLAINER – Concern mounts as Melissa Lucio’s Execution nears

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Lucio’s lawyers have filed various legal appeals seeking to stop her execution

Nearly half of jurors who sentenced a Texas mother to death in 2007 for the death of one of her children, have called for her execution to be stopped and for her to face a new trial.

Melissa Lucio (52), will be executed Wednesday for Mariah’s death in Harlingen. This city is about 75,000 and located in Texas’ southern tip.

Her lawyers say new evidence shows that Mariah’s injuries, including a blow to the head, were caused by a fall down a steep staircase, and many lawmakers and celebrities such as Kim Kardashian, an advocate for criminal justice reform, and Amanda Knox — an American who was convicted of murderinga British student in Italy and whose conviction was overturned — have rallied to Lucio’s cause. The girl was allegedly the victim of child abuse, however, according to the prosecution.

Lucio’s lawyers have filed various legal appeals seeking to stop her execution. The Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles has also filed a clemency petition for Lucio. They are scheduled to hear her case Monday. Republican Governor. Greg Abbott could also play a role in deciding Lucio’s fate. Lucio would become the first Latina executed in Texas, and the first woman that the state has executed since 2014.

Here’s what to know as Lucio’s execution approaches:

WHAT QUESTIONS ARE POSTED IN THIS CASE?

Lucio’s attorneys say her capital murder conviction was based on an unreliable and coerced confession that was the result of relentless questioning and her long history of sexual, physical and emotional abuse. They say Lucio wasn’t allowed to present evidence questioning the validity of her confession.

Her lawyers also contend that unscientific and false evidence misled jurors into believing Mariah’s injuries only could have been caused by physical abuse and not by medical complications from a severe fall.

“I knew that what I was accused of doing was not true. My children have always been my world and although my choices in life were not good I would have never hurt any of my children in such a way,” Lucio wrote in a letter to Texas lawmakers.

Luis Saenz from Cameron County, the prosecutor in this case, said that he disagreed with Lucio’s lawyers’ claim that new evidence would exonerate them. Prosecutors allege that Lucio had a history with drug abuse and lost custody at times of some of her children.

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