WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court has ruled against a Texas death row inmate who said his lawyers failed to challenge a faulty jury instruction at his trial and on appeal.
The justices ruled 5-4 on Monday that Erick Davila could not bring a claim that his appeals lawyer was ineffective for failing to challenge the work of his trial lawyer.
Davila was convicted in 2009 of the shooting deaths of a 5-year-old girl and her grandmother at a children's birthday party in Fort Worth. Prosecutors said Davila was trying to shoot someone else as part of a gang dispute.
Davila claimed the jury should have been instructed it could find him guilty of both murders only if he meant to kill two people. He said he only meant to kill one.