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New Trial Denied For Death Row Inmate

Charles Ray Crawford

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) – Mississippi death row inmate Charles Ray Crawford has again been denied a new trial for the slaying of a junior college student.

A three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday upheld the 2012 decision in Mississippi’s Northern District federal court.

Both courts say while Crawford was deprived his Six Amendment right to counsel as it related to a 1993 psychiatric evaluation, prosecutors presented enough evidence to the trial jury to uphold his conviction and sentence, even if the evaluation had not occurred.

The three-judge panel described the constitutional error as “harmless.”

Crawford, now 43, was sentenced to death in 1994 for the murder and rape of Northeast Mississippi Community College student Kristy Ray.

The Mississippi Supreme Court upheld his death sentence in 1998.