A Texas man on death row for the brutal murder of a Black man has lost his latest appeal, local station ABC 13 reported.
The Fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected the appeal of John William King, who was sentenced to death in the killing of James Byrd Jr. in 1998. King and two others dragged Byrd to death behind a pickup truck simply because he was Black.
The heinous crime prompted Texas to pass its own hate crime law in 2001, according to the station.
King tried to argue that lawyers had insufficiently presented his case, saying only a few pieces of circumstantial evidence linked him to the scene of a fight that led to Byrd being chained to the back of a truck by his ankles and dragged along the road, WTLX 19 reported. The court wasn’t buying it, however.
As for his accomplices, Lawrence Brewer was executed in 2011 for his role in the murder and Shawn Berry is currently serving a life sentence.