Julius Schulte

The U.S. Supreme Court will consider the case of an Alabama death row inmate who lawyers say suffers from dementia and can no longer remember killing a police officer in 1985.

Justices will hear arguments today as to whether it would be unconstitutional to execute 68-year-old Vernon Madison. Madison was convicted of killing Mobile police officer Julius Schulte in 1985.

The U.S. Supreme Court has said death row prisoners must have a "rational understanding" that they are about to be executed and why.

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear arguments in the case of a man sentenced to death for killing a Mobile police officer but who lawyers say can’t remember the 1985 murder.

The court took up Alabama death row inmate Vernon Madison’s case yesterday. Madison had been scheduled to be executed in January, but the court stayed the execution to consider whether to take the case.

Madison’s attorneys argue strokes and dementia have left him unable understand why he’s facing the death penalty, or to remember killing Mobile police officer Julius Schulte.

SCOTUS Grants Madison Stay of Execution

Jan 26, 2018
Vernon Madison
EJI

Alabama inmate Vernon Madison was scheduled to be put to death last night at 6 p.m., but he is still alive this morning.

The U.S. Supreme Court issued a stay of execution last night in order to consider arguments from the 67-year-old inmate’s attorneys. Madison had been sentenced to death for the 1985 killing of Mobile police officer Julius Schulte. In the three decades since, Madison’s lawyers say he’s suffered multiple strokes and now has vascular dementia. That has left him unable to remember the crime he committed or understand his looming execution.

Supreme Court Rejects Madison Appeal

Jan 22, 2018
Alabama death row
EJI

The Supreme Court has paved the way for a death row inmate to be put to death on Thursday, despite his lawyers pleading he doesn’t currently remember his crime or even understand his looming execution.

Attorneys for Vernon Madison petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court on Friday asking them to review his case and whether executing him would constitute cruel and unusual punishment. Justices rejected that request this morning without issuing a written explanation.

Crestmont kids animals
Alex AuBuchon / APR

Attorneys for death row inmate Vernon Madison will spend today looking for a last minute stay of execution. APR’s Pat Duggins reports the case also points out a part of Alabama’s legal system that remains controversial.

Vernon Madison is on Alabama’s death row after Mobile County Circuit Judge Ferrill McRae overrode the jury’s recommendation of life in prison. Alabama is the only state in the nation where a judge can do that.

Lawyers for an Alabama death row inmate are asking a federal court to stop his execution next week, saying he is incompetent because of mental illness, strokes and dementia.

Attorneys for 65-year-old Vernon Madison filed the emergency stay request Wednesday in federal court in Mobile.

Madison is scheduled to get a lethal injection May 12. He was convicted in the 1985 slaying of Mobile police Officer Julius Schulte.