Spradley v. State of Alabama
The ACLU's Capital Punishment Project filed a direct appeal brief in the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals challenging Montez Spradley’s conviction and death sentence. The state’s evidence against Mr. Spradley, a young African-American man convicted of killing a 58-year-old white grandmother, was alarmingly thin and riddled with inconsistencies. No physical evidence or eyewitness testimony connected him to the murder. The appeal raised numerous legal challenges to his conviction. It also challenged the trial judge’s decision to override the jury’s 10-2 recommendation of life imprisonment and to sentence Mr. Spradley to death.