Death row inmate whose appeal was rejected by Supreme Court kills self in Livingston prison
LIVINGSTON, Texas (KTRE) - A death row inmate who watched the U.S. Supreme Court reject the very appeal they had supported two years earlier has committed suicide.
State records show Terence Tremaine Andrus, 34, died of a hanging on Saturday at the Polunsky unit in Livingston. He was found in his cell at 2:55 p.m.
Andrus’ case went before the U.S. Supreme Court in 2020 and the court pushed the case back to the Texas Appeals Court. An opinion stated there was enough reason to believe Andrus’ attorney at the time of sentencing neglected to raise evidence which could have swayed a jury from a death sentence.
Andrus killed two people in 2008 in a Kroger parking lot in Fort Bend County. The TDCJ report states Andrus approached a woman in the parking lot and shot her once in the head. Andrus then approached a man, shot him once in the head, and fled on foot. Both victims died.
Among that evidence includes his mother’s drug addiction and prostitution, his role as caretaker for his siblings, his own drug use, multiple suicide attempts and a diagnosis of psychosis.
The Supreme Court ruling focused on the evidence that could have been used to sway the jury from a death sentence. The opinion states Andrus grew up in a home with a drug-addicted mother who was a prostitute.
“When Andrus was 16, he allegedly served as a lookout while his friends robbed a woman. He was sent to a juvenile detention facility where, for 18 months, he was steeped in gang culture, dosed on high quantities of psychotropic drugs, and frequently relegated to extended stints of solitary confinement,” the 2020 opinion states. “The ordeal left an already traumatized Andrus all but suicidal.”
In May of 2021, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals rejected the Supreme Court order in a 5-4 vote.
In May of 2022, the Supreme Court ruled against Andrus, with Justices John Roberts and Brett Kavanaugh changing their votes.
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