Gov. Rick Perry accepted a parole board recommendation Thursday to spare condemned inmate Kenneth Foster, the getaway driver in a 1996 murder who had been scheduled for execution within hours.
The sentence had drawn protests from death penalty opponents because Foster wasn't the actual shooter.
Foster was convicted of murder and sentence to death under Texas' law of parties, which makes non-triggermen equally accountable for a crime. Another condemned man was executed under the same statute earlier this year.
"After carefully considering the facts of this case, along with the recommendation from the Board of Pardons and Paroles, I believe the right and just decision is to commute Foster's sentence from the death penalty to life imprisonment," Perry said in a statement.
"I am concerned about Texas law that allowed capital murder defendants to be tried simultaneously and it is an issue I think the Legislature should examine."
The extra statement on this ridiculous law earns an extra kudo.
Good for Perry, a Republican and the people who shed light on this injustice.