Friday, May 9, 2008

Quintero Found Guilty

A Harris County jury has found Juan Leonardo Quintero guilty of capital murder in the death of Houston Police Officer Rodney Johnson ("Quintero convicted of capital murder in death of HPD officer," May 8, 2008). The case now moves to the sentencing phase, where jurors will decided whether to sentence Quintero to life in prison without the possibility of parole or to give him the death penalty.

Here's an excerpt from the article that appeared in yesterday's Chronicle:

"Quintero's defense team has worked to show he is not guilty of capital murder by reason of insanity.

Two psychologists and a neuropsychologist said a childhood fall caused brain damage that caused Quintero to perceive Johnson as a threat and take unreasonable action.

'Officer Johnson was a hero. He was a family man,' Recer said. 'We have an explanation. It's just not the quick, easy, bumper-sticker explanation the prosecution wants you to believe.'

Recer said she worked to figure out what was wrong with Quintero and what he was thinking.

'Because he sure wasn't thinking like any of us,' she said.

She said Quintero's 'bad brain' has an overactive threat-detection system, usually assuaged by drinking about 24 beers a day. But on that day, Quintero had about six beers.

Quintero acknowledged in a videotaped statement that, although his hands were cuffed behind his back, he shot Johnson while locked in the backseat of the patrol car."

No comments: