Modal close

Dear Democracy Now! visitor,

You turn to Democracy Now! for ad-free news you can trust. Maybe you come for our daily headlines. Maybe you come for in-depth stories that expose corporate and government abuses of power. Democracy Now! brings you crucial reporting like our coverage from the front lines of the standoff at Standing Rock or news about the movements fighting for peace, racial and economic justice, immigrant rights and LGBTQ equality. We produce our daily news hour at a fraction of the budget of a commercial news operation—all without ads, government funding or corporate sponsorship. How is this possible? Only with your support. If every visitor to this site in December gave just $10 we could cover our basic operating costs for 2017. Pretty exciting, right? So, if you've been waiting to make your contribution to Democracy Now!, today is your day. It takes just a couple of minutes to make sure that Democracy Now! is there for you and everybody else in 2017.

Non-commercial news needs your support.

We rely on contributions from you, our viewers and listeners to do our work. If you visit us daily or weekly or even just once a month, now is a great time to make your monthly contribution.

Please do your part today.

Topics

Texas Stays Larry Robison's Execution, But Is Set to Execute Another Prisoner Today

StoryAugust 18, 1999
Watch iconWatch Full Show

Just hours before Texas was to put to death a mentally ill man yesterday, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals granted him a stay of execution. Lawyers for Larry Robison, a paranoid schizophrenic man, had argued that he was not mentally competent to be executed, and the courts have asked for an evaluation of his condition. The Court, composed of nine republicans—eight of them former prosecutors—split in a 5-4 decision in favor of staying Robison’s execution.

Robison confessed to killing five people in August of 1982. His lawyers and his family say that he was severely mentally ill at the time, and Pope John Paul II and several mental health organizations have appealed for mercy on his behalf. Robison’s family says that the state refused to give him proper treatment for his illness, and he was released from several public hospitals just before he went on a killing spree. Mental health advocates have pointed out that while Texas spends an average of $2 million in capital trials, it ranks 49th in the country for mental health spending.

Yesterday on Democracy Now!, just before going to the prison to see her son for what she thought would be the last time, Larry Robison’s mother, Lois Robison, told us about her family’s ordeal in dealing with Larry’s mental illness, his crimes and his death sentence and impending execution.

She joins us again today to tell us about what happened yesterday.

Guests:

  • Lois Robison, mother of Larry Robison.
  • Melodee Smith, Attorney for Larry Robison.

Related links:


The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to democracynow.org. Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.

Non-commercial news needs your support

We rely on contributions from our viewers and listeners to do our work.
Please do your part today.

Make a donation