Sentenced to Death Because He's Black?

Duane Buck was sentenced to die after state prosecutors told a jury that "the race factor" made him dangerous. Now activists have launched a petition to win a new sentencing hearing for him. 

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Duane Buck (YouTube)

(The Root) -- Duane Buck may soon be facing execution in Houston's Harris County, even though his death sentence is the clear product of racial discrimination. Now a petition has been launched at Change.org to win a new sentencing hearing for him.

The jury was told that Mr. Buck was more likely to pose a future danger to society because he is African American. This inappropriate and offensive reliance on race was so improper that in 2000, the Texas Attorney General said that all seven defendants who had racially inappropriate evidence presented against them were entitled to new, fair, and color-blind sentencing hearings. Mr. Buck is the only one of the seven defendants who has not received a resentencing.

Last month the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund released a video highlighting the racial discrimination in Buck's case and Texas' death-penalty system.

A Broken Promise in Texas contains powerful, never-before-seen interviews with Texas civil rights leaders, elected politicians, the surviving victim in the Buck case, one of Buck's trial prosecutors and Buck's family members, among others, calling for a new, fair sentencing hearing.

Watch the powerful video here:

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Sept. 19 2014 8:34 AM