- Associated Press - Thursday, May 5, 2016

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - The Latest on the Florida Supreme Court weighing whether death row inmates’ sentences should be reduced to life in prison after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled the state’s death penalty law was unconstitutional (all times local):

10:45 a.m.

Florida’s Supreme Court has heard arguments in a case where they will decide whether a death row inmate’s sentence should be reduced to life, a ruling that could have implications for nearly 400 condemned prisoners in the state.

David Davis, the attorney for inmate Timothy Lee Hurst, on Thursday argued that his client’s sentence should be reduced to life following a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that found Florida’s system for sentencing people to death was unconstitutional.

The nation’s high court said Florida’s system gave too much power to judges, not juries, in imposing capital punishment.

Florida Assistant Attorney General Carine Mitz argued that Hurst should not receive a life sentence. She said if Hurst’s death sentence is tossed out by the court he should undergo a new penalty phase.

___

3:30 a.m.

Florida’s Supreme Court is hearing a second round of oral arguments in a case that could decide whether nearly 400 death row inmates will instead spend their lives in prison.

The hearing Thursday morning comes in response to a U.S. Supreme Court ruling earlier this year that found Florida’s death sentencing law unconstitutional.

The nation’s high court said Florida’s system gave too much power to judges, not juries, in imposing capital punishment.

The Florida Supreme Court will hear arguments and later decide whether to reduce the sentences of 389 death row inmates who were sentenced under the old system.

Earlier this week, a group of former judges and legal officials urged the court to impose life sentences.

Florida’s attorneys have objected, arguing that the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling should not apply to cases already decided.

LOAD COMMENTS ()

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide