Georgia Supreme Court rejects death penalty bar request
Georgia: The Georgia Supreme Court rejected, on Thursday, March 25, an alleged murderer's attempt to bar prosecutors from seeking to assign him death penalty. The request, put forth by Jamie Ryan Weis, was made with the argument that he was denied his constitutional right to a speedy trial as a result of inadequate funding for his lawyers. The request was initially denied by Pike County judge and has now been affirmed by the state Supreme Court. Three of the seven judges dissented with Justice Hugh Thompson saying, "If the state wants to seek the death penalty against an indigent defendant, it must provide adequate funds for a full and vigorous defense. The state cannot shirk this responsibility because it is experiencing budgetary constraints."