Last-minute appeal filed to stop execution of cop-killer

Mental retardation issue raised again to stop execution.

By Michelle Mondo / San Antonio Express News

Updated 11:47 p.m., Wednesday, October 26, 2011

More than a decade after Frank Garcia fatally shot his wife and San Antonio Police Officer Hector Garza, the convicted cop-killer will face his own execution today in Huntsville — barring relief from a last-minute appeal filed Wednesday afternoon.

Filed in the state's Court of Criminal Appeals by the Capital Punishment Clinic at the University of Texas School of Law, the appeal again raises the issue of mental retardation and cites evidence first presented by Simon Azar-Farr, Garcia's federal appellate attorney. “I fully recognize that a heinous and awful crime took place and two very innocent lives were lost,” Azar-Farr said, but added the legal process needed to be thorough, all evidence should be reviewed and new evidence taken into consideration.

The attorneys with the law school took over the case because Azar-Farr's appointment didn't extend to the state level, according to the appeal documents.

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