"Jonathan and Reginald Carr death sentences overturned," is by Amy Renee Leiker of the Wichita Eagle.
The Kansas Supreme Court on Friday overturned death sentences for Jonathan and Reginald Carr, brothers who were found guilty and sentenced to death in one of Wichita’s most notorious crime sprees.
The Carrs’ cases also were affirmed in part, reversed in part and the cases remanded, according to a pair of opinions published online at around 9:30 a.m. on Friday. Their murder convictions were upheld, according to the decisions.
They pair were convicted and sentenced to death in 2002.
The article notes that Kansas' last execution was in 1965, well before the Supreme Court ruling in Furman v. Georgia, which outlawed capital punishment in America until state laws were changed to conform with the Furman ruling.
The Topeka Capital-Journal reports, "High court overturns death penalty sentences for Carr brothers, upholds conviction," by Sherman Smith.
The Kansas Supreme Court overturned death penalty sentences Friday for Jonathan and Reginald Carr in the killing of four people in December 2000 in Wichita.
Justices upheld one count of capital murder and overturned the other three “because of charging and multiplicity errors.” New sentencing trials were ordered because the district court judge refused to allow separate penalty phase trials for the brothers.
At their 2002 trial, the brothers were convicted in the kidnapping, robbery, rape and forced sex of five victims. The victims were taken to a frozen field, shot and run over by a vehicle.
Overall, the court upheld 32 of Reginald Carr’s 50 convictions and 25 of Jonathan Carr’s 43 convictions.
The court offered guidance for new penalty trials based on several errors, including garbled jury instructions, in the first trial. The ruling highlights a section of instructions that include an extraneous “not,” reversing their meaning.
Justices declined to consider if Kansas’ execution protocol would protect against unnecessary pain, noting the state’s evolving protocol doesn’t allow for them to address its consitutionality.