Greg Abbott
Governor of Texas
c/o Amnesty International USA Headquarters
5 Penn Plaza, 16th Floor
New York, NY 10001

Billy Joe Wardlow

Dear Governor Abbott and the Board of Pardons and Paroles,

Billy Wardlow (TDCJ #999137, DOB 11/25/1974) faces execution on 8 July for a 1993 murder committed when he was just 18 years old. The jury never heard mitigating information about his troubled childhood and sentenced him based on his supposed “future dangerousness”.

The US Supreme Court ruled it unconstitutional to impose a death sentence on individuals under the age of 18 at the time of the offense and noted, “qualities that distinguish juveniles from adults do not disappear when an individual turns 18”. Scientific research shows that brain development and psychological and emotional maturation continues well into a person’s 20s. The sentencing jury in Wardlow’s case never heard this information. Two jurors now believe that he should serve a life sentence instead.

The death penalty is the ultimate denial of human rights. I urge you to grant him clemency.