Mississippi - Jan Micheal Brawner Denied Retrial Nov 5, 2006 2:05:29 GMT -5
Post by hoxfoxparkin on Nov 5, 2006 2:05:29 GMT -5
Brawner Denied Retrial
By Melissa Turner News Editor
Death row inmate Jan Michael Brawner has been denied a new trial by the Mississippi State Supreme Court.
Brawner was convicted in Tate County in 2002 for the murders of his ex-wife, their three-year-old daughter, and his ex-wife's parents.
Court records show that Brawner testified at trial that he waited at the Sarah home of his ex-wife's parents, where she and their daughter were staying, and, in a botched robbery attempt, shot his ex-wife and her mother. Records also reflect that Brawner testified that he shot his young daughter to prevent her from being able to identify him. He also testified at his trial that he waited for his ex-wife's father to return to the home and shot him as well.
According to the website of the Mississippi State Supreme Court, Brawner sought a new trial for several reasons, including the failure of his attorney to request a change of venue or to present mitigating evidence at sentencing.
In a ruling posted to their website, the Supreme Court found that a jury in a different county would likely not have come to a different conclusion than the one in Tate County did, and that it was the responsibility of defense counsel to request the change of venue at the time of the trial.
In his appeal application, Brawner also charged that his attorney did not call witnesses to testify on his behalf at sentencing, a move which he maintained could have resulted in a life sentence rather than the death penalty.
However, according to the court record, it was Brawner's choice to not call character witnesses during sentencing. Court transcripts show that Brawner's attorney asked him, under oath, if he wished to have his mother, or his psychiatrist, testify as to his background or his mental state, but he refused.
According to the website, the Court found that Brawner had been "fully apprised of the consequences of his choice" not to have mitigating testimony at sentencing.
The ruling states that the Court ultimately found that none of Brawner's arguments have merit, and denied his petition for a new trial.
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