UN experts urge US state of Virginia to halt execution of man with mental disorder


Two United Nations human rights experts have urged the US state of Virginia to cancel the planned execution on Thursday of a man with psychosocial disability. “We urge the authorities to annul the death sentence against Mr. [William] Morva and to retry him in compliance with international standards related to due process and fair trial,” said the UN Special Rapporteurs on summary executions, Agnes Callamard, and on right to health, Dainius Pūras, in a news release. Their joint appeal to the Governor of Virginia was issued ahead of the planned execution of Mr. Morva by lethal injection.The 35 year old Hungarian-American was sentenced to death in 2008 for the murder of a hospital security guard and a Sheriff’s deputy. According to the news release, a court appointed psychiatrist diagnosed Mr. Morva with delusional disorder in 2014, and noted that his crimes may have been committed as a result of the delusions he was experiencing. During his trial, the jury was not told about his psychosocial condition and he did not receive reasonable accommodation to adjust the process to his individual needs.



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