executed in Texas on December 7, 2000. He had been convicted of murder and sentenced to death largely on a single strand of hair recovered from the crime scene. Testimony at his trial was that microscopic tests identified the hair as Jones' and he was sentenced to death. One day before his execution, his attorney petitioned then Texas Governor George Bush for a 30 day reprieve so that the single strand of hair could be subjected to DNA testing. Governor Bush denied the request based on the recommendations of his staff lawyer, who apparently made no mention of the DNA test to Bush. Today, a DNA test of the hair requested by the Texas Observer and the New York based Innocence Project has revealed that the hair did not belong to Jones but matched the robbery victim. While the test does not prove that Jones was innocent, it also did not implicate Jones. This new test raises troubling questions about the case and begs the question about whether an innocent man was put to death in Texas. Other than the hair evidence, there was one witness who testified that Jones resembled the man he saw enter the store where the murder occurred.
Claude Howard Jones proclaimed his innocence to the very end.
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