Victim's family fights for death row inmate to be spared

Victim's family fights for death row inmate to be spared

FORT WORTH -- The parents of a man killed in a robbery at a putt-putt golf facility in Hurst more than a decade ago are now pushing for man convicted of murdering him to have his execution called off.

Paul Storey is set to be put to death on April 12 in Huntsville.

On Monday the death row inmate was back in a Tarrant County courtroom, as his attorneys ramped up efforts to save his life.

At issue during an afternoon hearing was which agency is now handling Storey's case.

The Tarrant County District Attorney's Office was recently granted a recusal because one of its top attorneys, Larry Moore, was part of Storey's original defense team in 2008.

The attorney general's office is now taking the lead.

Mike Ware, a longtime defense attorney that helps run the Innocence Project of Texas, was by Storey's side in court as he argued for clarification from the judge as to how the case should proceed when they file a clemency petition this week.

"If we could get an official to stand up and say, 'I'm the statutory trial official in this case, I will listen to that,'" said Ware after the hearing.

Ware is submitting a written letter and video statement from the parents of Jonas Cherry, the man killed during the armed robbery in 2006.

The statements request Storey not be executed, as the couple wants to spare Storey's family the same pain they endured all those years ago.

"This is rare. It's highly unusual for the victim's family to want to save the life of the condemned," said Corey Session, a friend of the Cherry's who also works with the Innocence Project.

The clemency petition will be filed this week.

Ware says it's critical there is a clear understanding of who can help present the family's wishes to the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles.

Session says he hopes the governor also takes a close look at the case.

Aside from the victim's family advocating for a reprieve, evidence has surfaced since the 2008 trial suggesting Storey is barely mentally competent, something jurors weren't told when they sentenced him to death.

Marilyn Grant, Storey's mother, was also in court on Monday and hopes decision makers take into account the new developments as they consider her son's final fate.

"If the parents of the victims are willing to help spare my son's life, who is the state of Texas to take it?" she said after the hearing.

Mike Porter, who also was convicted in the murder, is serving a life sentence but isn't facing death because of a deal reached with prosecutors. 

Victim's family fights for death row inmate to be spared by wfaachannel8 on Scribd

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