NEWS (4/6/20) — Texas: A Texas trial court has rescheduled the execution of Billy Joe Wardlow from April 29, 2020 until July 8, 2020, the fourth execution in Texas that has been postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic. District Judge Angela Saucier granted a motion filed by the Morris County District Attorney’s office to reschedule the execution, rather than withdrawing the death warrant as a defense motion had requested. If the court had withdrawn the warrant, prosecutors would have been required to seek a new death warrant, a process that would have further delayed Wardlow’s execution.

Although Judge Saucier did not provide a reason for rescheduling the execution, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals has stayed three other executions and authorized lower courts to reschedule judicial proceedings in light of the public health State of Disaster declared by Texas Governor Greg Abbott, and the Morris County D.A.’s motion invoked the coronavirus crisis as grounds for the postponement.