Navajo Death Row Inmate Loses Appeal To Probe Racial Bias

May 1, 2020

The only Native American on federal death row has lost a bid to look into potential racial bias in his case. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals had put Navajo Lezmond Mitchell's execution on hold while he sought review of a lower court decision.

Credit U.S. Dept. of Justice

The appeals court ruled Thursday that Mitchell had no grounds to interview jurors for potential bias against Native Americans.

The judges pointed out several safeguards that were in place.

Mitchell was convicted in the 2001 murder of a fellow Navajo tribal member and her 9-year-old granddaughter.

He was sentenced to death on a charge of carjacking resulting in death.