JACKSON, Miss. — Just hours before his scheduled death the Mississippi Supreme Court has issued a stay in the execution of Willie Manning until the court issues further notice. Manning was convicted for killing two MSU students in 1992.
According to Manning’s lawyer, David Voisin, there was an incorrect testimony related to bullets found on a tree by manning’s house compared to bullets found in the victims. He also says the FBI overstated some of the scientific principles behind samples of hair that were collected as evidence. They were never subjected to DNA testing because the technology did not exist at the time.
According to Attorney General Jim Hood, Manning’s attorney could have filed for DNA testing back in 2009 but did not. He maintains that further testing will not change the facts of the case.
The Attorney General’s Office issued this statement Tuesday afternoon,
“I am sorry that the victims’ families will have to continue to live this 20 plus year nightmare. Out of an abundance of caution, our Court stayed the sentence until it had time to review this flurry of last minute filings. Yesterday evening our office filed a report with the Court, which I obtained from the district attorney’s office around 6:00 yesterday afternoon. The report states that there was no serological evidence from the victims’ fingernail scrapings or semen on the vaginal swabs from the rape test kit for a DNA test to identify. After having an opportunity to consider this new evidence, the senior attorneys in this office believe our Court will dissolve the stay and the sentence will be carried out. If, however, our Court orders that these items be retested, then we will carry out that order.”
Manning was scheduled to be executed at 6 p.m. Tuesday