Texas plans to execute Melissa Lucio, a Mexican-American mother and practicing Catholic, on April 27, 2022 despite there being serious doubts about her guilt. Given Melissa's strong innocence claim, Catholic leaders are calling on Gov. Greg Abbott and the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles to stop her scheduled execution and spare her life.
The Catholic Church stands firmly against all executions — regardless of guilt — but the risk of executing an innocent person is especially concerning.
Melissa was convicted in 2008 for the death of her two-year-old daughter, Mariah. But there is significant evidence that Mariah's death was not actually the result of a homicide, but rather due to injuries sustained in an accidental fall.
Catholic leaders across the country, including Bishop Joe Vásquez of Austin, Texas and Bishop Daniel Flores of Brownsville, Texas, have issued public statements urging clemency for Melissa Lucio.