The Family of a Texas Woman on Death Row Holds Out in the Melissa Lucio Case
The Innocence Project claims that a jury erred in finding Melissa Lucio
guilty of murder. The jury was not aware that Lucio was raped‚ sexually assaulted‚ and even abused by her mother's two partners. The report also claims that Lucio's home was not kept clean. But the state medical examiner ruled in Lucio's favor‚ despite the sex abuse she suffered. The Innocence Project notes that a state medical examiner performed a thorough autopsy‚ and that the testimony of one juror expressed regret over the verdict.
Melissa Lucio's conciliatory statement to the jury was a confession to homicide
If this conviction holds up‚ Melissa Lucio
deserves a new trial. She was repeatedly abused as a child and became a child bride at sixteen. She was trapped in a dysfunctional marriage‚ which only encouraged her substance abuse and addiction. Her husband abandoned her and their children‚ and her next partner repeatedly raped her and threatened to kill her. Nevertheless‚ Melissa Lucio
continued to live a life of crime. Her children were deprived of a loving mother‚ a father‚ a loving wife‚ and a loving sister. A lifelong victim of sexual abuse‚ Melissa Lucio's statement to the jury was not an innocent one. At age 6‚ she was sexually abused by her family. This continued until her age of 16 when she was sold to a new husband. Her second husband was a violent alcoholic who abandoned her five children. Because of her wrongful conviction‚ Melissa Lucio's family was divided and the children were placed in state custody. Although the prosecution manipulated her conciliatory statement to the jury‚ Ms. Lucio was still found guilty. The prosecution misconstrued her conciliatory statement to the jury as a confession to homicide. The prosecution failed to investigate her past‚ including her history of domestic violence and child sexual abuse. The defense attorney did not provide the jury with any evidence of this history of abuse. In addition‚ the district attorney objected to expert testimony that corroborates Ms. Lucio's guilt.
Her mother's partners sexually assaulted‚ abused and raped her
The abuse and neglect of Melissa Lucio's mother and other male partners began when she was a child‚ and the trauma continued well into adulthood. When she was six‚ Lucio was sexually abused by her mother's live-in boyfriend. When she was 16‚ she married an older man and gave birth to five children. In 2004‚ her first husband left her in foster care‚ and Lucio struggled with poverty and homelessness. Her second husband‚ a violent drug addict‚ also had a history of physical abuse against Lucio. During her childhood‚ Lucio was subjected to several different abusive relationships‚ including her mother's boyfriends. She gave birth to twins while in prison‚ and she re-enacted these experiences to protect herself from sex abuse. In 2016‚ a petition filed by Melissa Lucio's mother to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) alleging that her mother sexually assaulted‚ abused‚ and raped her was denied a fair trial. The IACHR granted a new trial to Melissa Lucio‚ and found that her rights were violated. The prosecution and the defense failed to investigate Melissa Lucio's background. Because she had no criminal record‚ the prosecution misinterpreted her conciliatory statement and the police failed to investigate her past history. Ultimately‚ the prosecution and defense failed to prove guilt after a five-hour trial. The prosecution's defense lawyer was unable to introduce any evidence of abuse from the child's parents.
Her children were placed in foster care
The trial for a Texas woman sentenced to death is ongoing‚ but the family of the 53-year-old mother of 14 is putting up a strong defense. Lucio's family history is one of poverty‚ addiction‚ and violence. She suffered sexual abuse from both family members and partners‚ and her children experienced homelessness and extended periods of drug use. Child protective services had visited the Lucio household multiple times‚ but the defense attorneys say the children were never physically abused. Mariah's family lived in a two-bedroom apartment in Harlingen‚ Texas. The unit was on the second floor. Mariah's younger sister walked down the stairs unsupervised. She wore special shoes for her foot deformity. Despite the circumstances‚ the family had plans to move to a newer building. Mariah's sister‚ Sonia Chavez‚ told investigators that her mother had been abusive and her children were being neglected. Lucio and her children were taken from their mother when Lucio was just 16. She and her husband were not known by Child Protective Services when the children were taken. The children never saw their parents as abusive. Lucio and Alvarez had 11 children‚ including Mariah‚ the youngest. The family was living in poverty and struggled with drug addiction‚ but the two children returned after a few years of visitation. Lucio had to undergo drug tests and was clean the night of her daughter's death.
Her home was not clean
The death penalty is back on the political agenda‚ and the family of a Texas woman on death row is holding out. Melissa Lucio
was sentenced to death in 2014 for the capital murder of her boyfriend. She was homeless and poor‚ and had been sexually abused multiple times. But the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) says the woman was guilty of the crime. The state of Texas also says that she is a victim of domestic abuse‚ which makes her case even more compelling. The case has gained national attention‚ with a documentary about the case releasing in 2020. National news organizations and celebrities have joined the call for intervention‚ and a recent episode of HBO's Last Week Tonight raised questions about Melissa Lucio's guilt. Even Kim Kardashian has publicly backed the case and signed a petition urging Abbott to stop Melissa Lucio's execution.
Her children were not properly supervised
Child Protective Services records show that Melissa Lucio's family was not adequately supervised. The children were not fed‚ kept clean‚ or given adequate supervision. Lucio's family struggled financially and sometimes lived in a park. Despite the alleged abuse‚ neither the children nor their mother reported any problems to CPS. As a result‚ the child protective services took the children away from Lucio. A lack of supervision led police to believe that Lucio had murdered her 2-year-old daughter Mariah. Lucio was a single mother who was generally home alone with the child. Her youngest child‚ Mariah‚ had a mild physical disability and was prone to falling. Lucio told police that she had been watching her daughter for hours‚ but she did not know how many stairs Mariah had fallen. Lucio said her daughter was fine the night before her death‚ but the following day‚ Mariah fell down the stairs. The case also had a flawed defense. Lucio's family members did not know that Velez had been jailed for a second time for the same crime. As a result‚ they did not have the resources to hire a private investigator. Despite the inadequacies in her case‚ her attorneys became convinced that she was wrongfully convicted. The state appointed an attorney‚ Margaret Schmucker‚ to represent Lucio in post-conviction proceedings. In those proceedings‚ Schmucker immediately recognized problems.
Her attorneys say her death sentence is based on a false confession
A family of a Texas woman on death row is holding out against her execution‚ urging the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles to overturn her conviction and commute her sentence. The case is so controversial‚ more than 250‚000 people have signed a petition calling for clemency. A documentaries detailing the case is set to be released in 2020. The documentary exposes a case that had no evidence‚ was based on a false confession‚ and was skewed by a corrupt DA. Melissa Lucio's family is holding out against her execution by arguing that her conviction was based on a false confession. Lucio was convicted of killing her two-year-old daughter Mariah in 2008‚ and has 13 surviving children. The prosecutors said the daughter died of injuries from physical abuse‚ but Lucio's attorneys say Mariah fell down a flight of stairs and didn't die of a heart attack or a stroke. Melissa's case has drawn national attention‚ with the infamous Melissa Lucio
conviction making its way through national media. Last Week Tonight even mentioned her case in an episode about wrongful convictions. The State of Texas vs. Melissa on Hulu has raised questions about Lucio's guilt‚ and even Kim Kardashian has expressed support for her.
Her family is traveling across Texas to urge her release
The family of a Texas woman on death row is holding out for her release. The case against Melissa Lucio
is controversial. She was wrongfully convicted of the 2008 murder of her daughter‚ Mariah Alvarez. Lucio is scheduled to be executed in about two weeks. Two bishops and a Catholic organization have called for clemency. Ms. Lucio's trial was unfair and several judges have said she should not be executed. Despite a long and difficult road‚ Lucio's family and supporters are still holding out for her release. A forensic expert who reviewed her case has concluded that Mariah's injuries were the result of trauma. The medical examiner ruled that Mariah died as a result of child abuse - a hasty decision. Other statements of support have been shared by faith leaders and death row exonerees. Lucio's family and attorneys are calling for clemency. Her lawyers are asking the Texas Governor to remove the district attorney and judge and grant her a reprieve of 120 days. They claim that both of them have a conflict of interest. If the Texas death penalty is overturned‚ the family and attorneys of Lucio hope to win a commutation of her sentence.