Dallas County District Attorney Faith Johnson will not be seeking the death penalty in the case of Antonio Cochran, charged with the murder of Zoe Hastings in 2015.
Police allege that Cochran kidnapped Hastings in her family's minivan from Walgreens on Garland Road and Peavy Drive, killed the teenager, then dumped her and the vehicle in a creek in Lake Highlands. Hastings was on her way to church.
Dallas County District Attorney Faith Johnson said that the Cochran had an "intellectual disability," which makes him ineligible for the death penalty. On Friday, the Dallas County District Attorney's Office released the following statement:
“It came to our attention that the defendant may have had some intellectual challenges. As a result, we were pro-active in requesting the court’s permission for an evaluation. Our expert’s findings are such that the defendant does fit the current legal definition of a person with an intellectual disability. We are not seeking the death penalty in this case because the current law states an individual who has been diagnosed with an intellectual disability is not eligible for the death penalty. However, we remain committed to seeking justice on behalf of Zoe Hastings and her family.”
WFAA discovered Cochran has an extensive criminal history in Bowie County that includes multiple felony arrests.
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