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Death Penalty Not Allowed in Shooting Retrial, First Cir. Rules

Oct. 8, 2020, 11:56 PM

The government can’t seek the death penalty in its retrial of a man accused of shooting up a crowd of people at a mini-market in Puerto Rico, the First Circuit ruled Thursday.

Alexis Candelario-Santana was convicted on 18 murder-related charges in 2013, and prosecutors sought the death penalty on 16 of them, court documents show. The jury knew that a death-penalty decision must be unanimous, or a life sentence would be imposed.

In his first appeal, Candelario-Santana successfully argued that his Sixth Amendment right to a public trial was violated when the judge allowed a witness to testify in ...