September 21st, 2010
06:30 PM ET

Supreme Court rejects woman's death-row appeal

The  Supreme Court on Tuesday denied an appeal by Teresa Lewis to halt her execution in the state of Virginia. The execution is scheduled for Thursday night.

Lewis pleaded guilty to her role in the 2002 slayings of her husband and stepson in their rural home near Danville, about 145 miles from Richmond, Virginia. Two male co-conspirators - the triggermen - were given life in prison without parole.

Lewis and her lawyers had formally asked Gov. Bob McDonnell to spare her life, arguing she has an IQ that is borderline mentally retarded and that she was manipulated to commit the crimes by a dominant male co-defendant.

McDonnell on Friday rejected the request, and Lewis' lawyers appealed to the Supreme Court.

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Filed under: Crime • Supreme Court • Virginia
soundoff (218 Responses)
  1. mainstreet

    I have more to worry about than whether an evil person dies or no. Unfortunately many who are executed or on death row are or were innocent.

    http://officeofstrategicinfluence.com/deathpenalty/

    September 21, 2010 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Diane

      She confessed.... She's guilty.... She knew what she was doing.... Keep her in jail forever.....

      September 23, 2010 at 10:48 am | Report abuse |
  2. Sal

    Gadfly, wherever you are from doesn't have the amount of murders here in the U.S., Seems with all the murders here we are still not as civilized as other western nations yet. We have to have the death penalty here! What's your IQ by the way, and do you even know it? Are you the doctor that examined her to determine that she is mentally handicapped?? The doctors provided by the defense attorneys perhaps determined her to be mentally handicapped. What do you expect from the defense attorneys doctors? I guess you will spare my life if I kill someone in your family then, and I thank you for that......think about it, your kind of talk is cheap, but put yourself in the victims place. You are all not thinking...........

    September 21, 2010 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Kyle

    I don't care that she may be mentally retarded. If a 'normal' person planned your death and you died, or a mentally retarded person planned your death and you died...you're still dead. The fact that she was in bed with her husband when her lackies came in and did the deed...yeah...cold hearted. When a rabid animal kills a person, you put the animal down. I don't see why there would be a differnce here, especially after the fact she's admitted to her part in the crime. And just because the other two didn't get the death penalty, doesn't mean that they shouldn't have. As far as I'm concerned, the whole lot of them should be put out of our misery.

    September 21, 2010 at 8:30 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Tom

    Kindof lopsided punishments. The woman didnt actually kill anyone and she gets death but the people who did get life.

    September 21, 2010 at 8:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carlos Marin

      She did kill her husband. Instead of using a gun, she used hired killers. There is no moral difference between killing someone from ten meters away, by pulling a trigger and killing him with a knife and being spattered by his blood. She intentionally CAUSED his death.

      September 22, 2010 at 1:51 am | Report abuse |
  5. Jeff

    Commit the same crime as a man, get punished like a man. Equality Avenue is a two way street.

    September 21, 2010 at 8:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dan

      Except it's not equal; the guys did the murders, and she gets death...they don't.

      I don't disagree with her sentence; I disagree w/the guys' sentences.

      September 21, 2010 at 8:36 pm | Report abuse |
  6. cabo wabo

    borderlinr retarded? yes! she was in freking bed with her husb when the dude shot him! he## yes shes retarded

    September 21, 2010 at 8:33 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Sal

    Tom, you are right, all three of them deserve to be executed.

    September 21, 2010 at 8:33 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Michele

    If lethal injection costs more to carry out than paying a life sentence than someone is over charging for their services and products. Aren't bullets cheap? Wouldn't there be plenty of people out there who would be happy to volunteer to be the executioner to save ourselves/us taxpayers some money? And yes, all 3 of them should die. Maybe if death penalty were carried more frequently some people might think twice. They all new what they were doing was wrong.

    September 21, 2010 at 8:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • mainstreet

      It is the appeal process Michele that we pay for.

      September 21, 2010 at 8:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carlos Marin

      Actually, a bullet to the head totally painless and is the most merciful method of execution. A bullet will destroy the brain in fractions of a second, so there is no way the person being executed will be aware of the process of dying. People dislike it because it's bloody and messy. In doing this, they are giving their own feelings a higher priority than mercy to the person being executed.

      September 22, 2010 at 1:57 am | Report abuse |
  9. liz

    Yes this is crazy. I agree with Jeff. Why would they not put them all in a room full of gas? they are all guilty. If she finds grace and mercy from God, we shall see on thursday night!

    September 21, 2010 at 8:54 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Sal

    Michele, over time it does cost more to have them executed. It's not just the chemicals we are talking about here. It's the appeals process for those on death row that is costly because there is no end to them. It costs millons of dollars. Before a person who is sentenced to life uses up that amount of money he will die of old age.

    September 21, 2010 at 8:54 pm | Report abuse |
  11. seethemhere

    Michele and mainstreet, yes it's over priced and the appeal process is outrageous...created by lawyers I'm sure. Why it should cost so much is far beyond my understanding. Makes no sense to me. (Sorry for the tirade earlier). I know from my cousin's death that if it had been my child, I would revel in the death, painful and slow, of the perpetrator. I guess I'm cold-hearted and could not survive in Canada, but I still feel deep anger because Ricky's murderer got off because "he was on meds for bi-olar" and "truley felt bad for what he had done". I firmly believe that a lot of non-believers of the death penalty would change their minds if it was one of their children who died at the hands of a monster, retarded or not. Not that I wish that on anyone, but it would make them think twice about spouting off about how barbaric we are. Good night to all.

    September 21, 2010 at 8:57 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Michele

    Logical2010:you are funny I like your way of thinking! But, I don't wanna pay for it so do we have any volunteers? Any tutors out there?

    September 21, 2010 at 9:01 pm | Report abuse |
  13. mhorta

    What is our country coming too. I am totally shocked by the decision of the Supreme Court of our land. How can we execute a woman who has limited intelligence and know how to make a right decision. How are we certain that she was not abused not only emotionally, put physically as well. If we go ahead with this execution, we have lost our moral and Judeo-Christian principles. My God is a God of mercy, forgiveness and compassion. What god are we beginning to worship? We are no better then those who want to stone the women for adultery. I am scared of the path our nation is taking. We have lost our moral compess.

    September 21, 2010 at 9:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • desert voice

      Mhorta, I am a hundred percent in agreement with you! The Supreme Court we have, reflects the degree in which the Nation has deteriorated morally! The Supreme Court is the yardstick for that! If they are for abortion, they will, I repeat, they will be for death penalty! Innocent, retarded and otherwise, people will continue to be put to death by this evil Court!

      September 22, 2010 at 12:39 am | Report abuse |
    • Carlos Marin

      Your God is a god of mercy? He condemns people to being burned alive for eternity for the crime of no believing his Son died for our sins...

      September 22, 2010 at 2:01 am | Report abuse |
  14. Sal

    Well let your God forgive her after she is put to death! 

    September 21, 2010 at 9:06 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Michele

    Thanks for enlightning me, I guess I just wish things could be more cut n dried, black n white,logical. Maybe I'm unrealistic!

    September 21, 2010 at 9:12 pm | Report abuse |
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