On Texas Death Row, Henry Watkins "Hank" Skinner is fighting to have DNA testing done of evidence that he argues will support his claims of innocence in the beating death of his girlfriend,  Twila Busby, and her two grown-up sons back in 1993. 

In 2010, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its opinion that Skinner could proceed in civil court, arguing violation of his civil rights under the Civil Rights Act (42 U.S.C. § 1983) because the State of Texas post-conviction law on when DNA testing can be done after there has been a trial and a sentencing are in violation of those civil rights. 

The High Court didn’t decide that the DNA testing could happen.  It just opened the doors to a civil courtroom debate on what had happened much earlier, in a criminal one.  This is a big deal.  

Right now, Hank Skinner is scheduled to be executed by the State of Texas on November 9, 2011.

Lots of folk are following the case of Hank Skinner.  Some, because they are interested in the civil rights aspects of the case  Some, because they are against the death penalty.  Others are following along because they believe that Hank Skinner is an innocent man. 

One person with a particularly unique perspective here is Kirk Bloodsworth, who supports Skinner’s request that the DNA be tested as the first Death Row inmate in the United States to be exonerated after post-conviction DNA testing proved Bloodsworth to be innocent.

No matter the reason for your interest, here are some sites that are doing a fine job in bringing consistent information to us all regarding the Hank Skinner case:

What Can You Do for Hank Skinner?

Other than informing others, etc., you can sign the petition by the Texas Coalition here or contact the Texas Governor by phone, fax, or email at the contact information provided on his web site.