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Justen Grant HALL





Classification: Murderer
Characteristics: Hate crime - Robbery - Drugs
Number of victims: 2
Date of murders: April 10 / October 28, 2002
Date of arrest: November 23, 2002
Date of birth: June 16, 1981
Victims profile: Arlene (Hector) Diaz / Melanie Billhartz
Method of murder: Shooting / Strangulation with a electrical cord
Location: El Paso County, Texas, USA
Status: Sentenced to death on May 11, 2005
TDCJ Number
Date of Birth
Hall, Justen Grant 999497 06/16/1981
Date Received
Age (when received)
Education Level
05/11/2005 23 09
Date of Offense
Age (at the offense)
10/28/2002 21 El Paso
Hair Color
White Male Brown
Eye Color
6' 05" 197 Hazel
Native County
Native State
Prior Occupation
El Paso Texas Laborer
Prior Prison Record

TDCJ# 914053 on a 2 year sentence from El Paso County for 1 count of Burglary of Habitat.
Summary of incident

On 10/28/2002 in El Paso County, Texas, Hall fatally strangled a female (race and age unknown) with a black electrical cord.
Race and Gender of Victim
Unknown Female

Arlene (Hector) Diaz

Location: El Paso, Texas
Cause of Death: Shot in the back, allegedly by Justen Grant Hall
Date of Death: April 10, 2002
Source: El Paso Times, April 27, 2002

Arlene (Hector) Diaz was planning her upcoming transition, and attended a local transgender support group the night of her murder. She was fatally shot in the back, allegedly by Justen Grant Hall. The local police have classified this murder as a hate crime.


Victim of hate crime led 2 lives, friends say

El Paso Times

May 1, 2002

Before he was shot in the back and left to die near a convenience store, Hector Arturo Diaz led two lives.

At home in Sunland Park, he was the baby boy of a hard-working mother, the sibling of nine brothers and sisters. At night, the 28-year-old man dressed in women's clothing and became "Arlene," a fixture of the gay scene in Downtown El Paso.

April 10, when a passer-by found his body on Anapra Road, shock and sorrow united his two worlds.

"I am shattered," his mother, Rosa Diaz, said last week, in tears.

"You have children. You raise them. You see them grow and someone kills them. He didn't deserve this. There is no reason for this."

Police believe the killing was motivated by prejudice over Diaz's sexual orientation.

Police declined to comment further, but a police report indicates they obtained an incriminating statement from the alleged killer, Justen Grant Hall, 20, of the 8500 block of Lakehurst.

Hall was charged with murder April 22, and police subsequently announced that the case was being classified as a hate crime.

The law describes a "hate crime" as an offense committed "because of the actual or perceived race, color, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender or disability" of the victim.

In El Paso, members of the Anti-Violence Project of Lambda, a national gay advocacy group, say hate crimes are underreported to authorities.

Project volunteers monitor anti-gay violence through victims' calls to a hot line. In 2001 they received testimonies of 117 bias-motivated incidents involving 172 victims. The tally includes 42 reported assaults, 85 cases of harassment and 16 cases of vandalism, the project volunteers said. The number of anti-gay incidents remained constant between 2000 and 2001, volunteers said.

In 2000, police data show, there were nine hate crimes in El Paso and none were believed to have been committed over sexual orientation.

Project coordinator Rob Knight said such acts and the killing of Diaz are "spawned by bigotry and hate."

"No one should live in fear or lose their life simply for being who they are," Knight said.

Diaz had left Gadsden High School in Anthony, N.M., in the 11th grade and obtained his GED from UTEP. He studied at a technical school and got a job filing records at Sierra Medical Center, his family said.

He lived with his mother, a hotel housekeeper, and three sisters at their mother's house on Yucca Street in Sunland Park.

There, he shared a bedroom with his grandfather until the elderly man died two years ago. Stuffed animals and a fleet of small helium balloons still line his shelves. His Bible lies open, its pages held down by a bookmark that reads, "Be Happy, Share A Smile!"

He liked going to the movies and eating Chinese food.

"He was very funny," his sister Rosemary Porras said.

Funny, outspoken and friendly also is how Diaz's friends described him. But they knew him as "Arlene," almost unrecognizable in female clothing, with a made-up face, save for the dimples in his cheeks and chin.

Diaz was what the gay community calls "transgender," someone who feels trapped in a body of the wrong sex.

To respect Diaz's wishes, friends Sascha Adams and Dan Nicotera refer to Diaz as "she."

"She would go to work in male clothing and dressed as a boy at home. She respected her family's wish not to see her like that," said Adams, a soft-spoken transgender person, sitting in a corner of the Lambda Community Center on Ochoa Street.

Before cruising the clubs, Diaz would get ready at the Planned Parenthood's Desert Rainbow Center on Montana Avenue. At the end of the night, Diaz would change again on the way home.

"She'd wake up as a boy," Adams said. "She used to say as soon as she got her own apartment, she'd be a girl 24-7."

Diaz's family knew. Their baby boy had come out many years ago. But the mere mention of the name "Arlene" causes Rosa Diaz to tense up.

"It's Hector. That's the name he was born under," she said.

Diaz was buried in a man's suit.

However complicated life was getting, Diaz was happy.

"She loved her mother and sisters," Adams said. "There was one sister in particular with whom they talked about everything. She would always mention them. That's all she ever talked about -- how happy she was at home."

Diaz's alleged killer had been hanging around the gay bar scene for some time, but several members of the gay community said Hall is not claimed as one of their own. With his bony face, he looked a good 10 years older than he was. He drove a dark GMC Yukon pickup, police reports read.

"Supposedly, he was a real nice guy," Nicotera said.

Few people knew Hall had been incarcerated from April 2000 to November 2001 on two charges of burglary and one of auto theft.

On the last night of his life, Diaz had gone to the Desert Rainbow Center for a transgender support group meeting. He put on his favorite outfit, a fuzzy black woman's sweater, black pants and fashionable boots. He fixed his long, black hair and applied makeup. The group watched a movie, and Diaz, Adams, Nicotera and others went to Sergio's Bar on Missouri Avenue. Diaz disappeared about 10:30 p.m.

Police did not disclose the relationship between Diaz and Hall, but friends said they were not dating. A witness saw the two early the next morning, a police report says. They appeared to be arguing. It was shortly before police reports allege Hall shot Diaz in the back.

On April 20, Hall was arrested at the Gas Light Square trailer park at 500 Talbot in Canutillo for illegally carrying a loaded Bryco Arms 9 mm handgun. Hall was out on bond when he was arrested two days later and charged with Diaz's murder. Hall remained jailed Tuesday in lieu of $75,000 bond, authorities said.


Death Penalty Sentence


Feb. 18, 2005

A jury has decided; 23-year old Justen Grant Hall will get death for the murder of Melanie Billhartz.

Hall was found guilty of killing Melanie in 2002 while he was on bond; accused of killing Arturo Diaz.

The jury deliberated for close to 6 hours. Melanie's sister read an impact statement after hearing the verdict and broke down in tears.

The family of Arturo Diaz was also in the courtroom; they too broke down after hearing Hall's sentence.

The family mambers say Hall has shown no remorse for what he's done. During closing arguments Friday morning, he blew a kiss at the prosecuting attorney while she gave her argument.

Hall looked a little fidgety after jurors handed down the verdict and gave an obscene gesture in the courtroom.

Defense attorneys were pushing for life in prison, but say Hall told them he'd rather get death than be in prison for the rest of his life.


In the Court of Criminal Appeals of Texas

No. AP-75,121

Justen Grant Hall, Appellant,
The State of Texas

On Direct Appeal from El Paso County

Keller, P.J., delivered the unanimous opinion of the Court


Appellant was convicted in February 2005 of capital murder. (1) Pursuant to the jury's answers to the special issues set forth in Texas Code of Criminal Procedure art. 37.071 ??2(b) and 2(e), the trial judge sentenced appellant to death. (2) On direct appeal to this Court, appellant raises sixteen points of error. Finding no reversible error, we shall affirm.


A. Background

Viewed in the light most favorable to the jury's verdict, the evidence at trial shows the following.

The victim (Melanie Billhartz) and Ted Murgatroyd were good friends. Murgatroyd and appellant were acquainted through mutual friends and because they "[hung] around the same crowd," primarily at a drug house in El Paso. On October 28, 2002, at roughly 4:00 p.m., Murgatroyd encountered Billhartz when she pulled up in front of the drug house. Murgatroyd asked Billhartz to take him to a convenience store, and she let him drive, with her as a passenger. On the way back from the store, Murgatroyd made a sarcastic comment, and Billhartz "flipped out" and started hitting him and screaming at him to get out of her truck. Murgatroyd stopped the truck, and as he was attempting to leave the vehicle, Billhartz hit him in the face and jumped on him. As he put his hand up, he struck her on the lip. Billhartz then drove to the house, with Murgatroyd following on foot. When he reached the house, Billhartz was sitting in her truck, parked in front of the house.

Murgatroyd's associates, including appellant, who believed that Murgatroyd had attacked Billhartz, came out to talk to him. While Billhartz remained in the truck, they discussed the situation. The dilemma that this group faced was that Billhartz wanted to call the police and report an assault by Murgatroyd. But when the police were mentioned, appellant stated his disapproval of this possibility and his intention to kill the victim. According to Murgatroyd, Billhartz was killed to prevent the discovery of the drug house. Murgatroyd did not see appellant again until three to five hours later, when appellant pulled up to the drug house in Billhartz's truck, with her body in the back of the cab. Chase Hale testified that after appellant returned with Billhartz's truck, appellant told Hale to stay away from it because appellant had just killed Billhartz. Appellant then ordered Murgatroyd to pick up a shovel and machete in order to go bury the victim. After driving to New Mexico, appellant ordered Murgatroyd to cut off the victim's fingers to prevent any DNA from being found under her fingernails. Appellant then dumped the body in New Mexico, although Murgatroyd was under the impression that appellant took the victim's fingers with him. Later, upon questioning by detectives, Murgatroyd led the authorities to the victim's body and gave them a written statement concerning the preceding events.

Appellant was apprehended on November 23, 2002, following a routine safety check by Deputy Tommy Baker of the Hale County Sheriff's Office. During the safety check, a license plate check resulted in a "missing or endangered" person report on the victim. Further investigation resulted in a search of the vehicle. While the investigation was being conducted, Baker received a report that the victim's body had been found and that the occupants of the truck were suspects. The occupants were arrested for unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, and appellant was later indicted for Billhartz's murder.

Dr. Patricia McFeeley, pathologist and assistant chief Medical Examiner, supervised the autopsy of the victim. A power cord was wrapped around the victim's neck three times and tied tightly. Her nasal bones were fractured, and she had multiple fractures of the lower jaw bone, fractures in her right hand, a fractured rib, and fingers missing from her right hand. After appellant was arrested for the victim's murder, he confessed to the offense to Detective David Samaniego of the El Paso Police Department.

B. Analysis

In points of error one and two, appellant contends that the evidence is legally and factually insufficient to support a verdict of guilty of capital murder based on obstruction or retaliation. In a legal sufficiency review, we view all the evidence in the light most favorable to the verdict and determine whether a rational fact-finder could have found the elements of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt. (3) Under a factual sufficiency review, we examine the evidence with two questions in mind. (4) First, we ask whether the evidence is so weak that the jury's verdict seems clearly wrong and unjust. (5) Second, we ask whether, even considering conflicting evidence, the jury's verdict is against the great weight and preponderance of the evidence. (6) We find appellant's claims of legal and factual insufficiency to be meritless.

Appellant claims that, in order to prove guilt in this case, the evidence must show that appellant killed the victim knowing that she intended to either report the assault or report the existence of the methamphetamine lab at the house. He contends that, instead the evidence here supports only a conclusion that the discovery of the methamphetamine lab would have been a collateral consequence of the victim's report. Appellant reasons that since he did not care about the victim reporting the assault, but rather was concerned with a collateral consequence of that report, he murdered the victim to prevent an inadvertent drawing of the police to the methamphetamine lab. As support, he cites the prosecution's theory of the case, which included the argument that appellant murdered the victim to keep the police from coming to the house and finding methamphetamine on the premises. Therefore, according to appellant, the victim was not killed for the specific purpose of preventing her from calling the police and reporting an assault.

A person commits capital murder if he intentionally commits murder in the course of committing or attempting to commit the offense of obstruction. (7) A person commits the offense of obstruction if he intentionally or knowingly "harms ... another by an unlawful act to prevent or delay the service of another as a person who ... the actor knows intends to report the occurrence of a crime." (8) When determining the meaning of a statute, we begin with its plain language unless that language leads to absurd results. (9) A plain reading of the statute indicates that the State must prove that appellant intended to obstruct or prevent the victim from reporting a crime. Nothing in the statute requires an intent to prevent the reporting of a specific crime. Appellant's own reasons for committing obstruction, and in this case capital murder by way of obstruction, are relevant to show motive, but they are not an element of the offense.

Viewed in the light most favorable to the verdict, the evidence is legally sufficient. The evidence shows that appellant left the house with the victim. Upon his return, he admitted to Murgatroyd that he had murdered her, and he enlisted aid in disposing of her body. Appellant confessed to El Paso detectives that he murdered the victim, and he signed a statement to that effect. Point of error one is overruled.

In reviewing the evidence for factual sufficiency, we do not substitute our judgment for that of the fact-finder. (10) Viewing the evidence in a neutral light, we conclude that the evidence is factually sufficient to sustain appellant's conviction for capital murder. Point of error two is overruled.


In points of error three and four, appellant claims that the trial court erred in denying his motion to suppress the evidence seized as a result of the vehicle stop conducted by Deputy Baker. Point three alleges a violation of the United States Constitution, specifically the Fourth Amendment, while point four raises a state law claim.

On the night of appellant's arrest, Deputy Baker came upon Billhartz's truck while it was parked on the highway near Plainview. Deputy Baker approached the truck to check on the welfare of the occupants because the vehicle was parked with its back wheels still on the highway. He advised the occupants, including appellant, of a safer place to rest, and he sent them on their way without asking for identification. As appellant drove off, Deputy Baker's dispatcher informed him that the license check on the truck showed that the owner had been reported as missing. Deputy Baker then activated his lights and stopped the vehicle to investigate. During this investigation, he received a report from his dispatcher that the owner of the truck was the victim of a homicide. Deputy Baker was told to seize the truck in connection with a murder investigation. He was also informed that appellant and the other occupants of the vehicle were suspects in the homicide. Deputy Baker then placed appellant under arrest for unauthorized use of a motor vehicle. A capital murder arrest warrant for appellant was later obtained by El Paso police.

Appellant contends that Deputy Baker's second encounter with appellant, which resulted in his arrest, was not justified under either Texas law or the Fourth Amendment. He argues that the second stop was not supported by specific, articulable facts which, taken together with rational inferences from those facts, led the officer to conclude that the person detained was, had been, or soon would be engaged in criminal activity. (11) According to appellant, after the safety check there were no circumstances that evidenced a possible violation of the law. We disagree.

When evaluating whether there is sufficient reasonable suspicion to make a second stop and investigate the circumstances, and later, sufficient probable cause to arrest appellant, it is proper for us to consider all information available to the investigating officer at the time of the stop, be it from his observations or from information relayed to him by other law enforcement personnel. (12) At the time of the stop, Deputy Baker knew that the owner of the vehicle, a female, had been reported missing and that her vehicle was presently being driven by a man. These facts alone are sufficient to warrant an investigative stop. Points of error three and four are overruled.


In points of error five and six, appellant complains that the trial court erred in denying his motion to suppress his confession. Point five raises a claim based on Article 38.21 of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure, and point six raises a claim based on the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments of the United States Constitution.

On November 25, 2002, appellant signed a statement confessing to the murder. Appellant claims that the confession was improperly obtained because it was not "freely and voluntarily made without compulsion or persuasion." (13) In support of this assertion, appellant points to evidence that he was under a suicide watch, that he was exhibiting psychotic behavior, that El Paso detectives were aware of his suicide attempts, that he requested his medication for his depression and nothing happened, and that he had not slept for six to seven days prior to the arrest. Citing article 38.21 and the preceding matters, appellant alleges that he was not in the right frame of mind to give a voluntary confession and, therefore, his confession should have been excluded. (14)

A statement is considered to be voluntary unless there was such "official, coercive conduct" that "any statement obtained thereby was unlikely to have been the product of an essentially free and unconstrained choice by its maker." (15) Here, we see nothing in the record, or in anything appellant alleges, that demonstrates such action or coercion. According to Detective Pantoja of the El Paso Police Department, when he met with appellant, appellant was advised of his rights, waived his rights, and never requested the presence of his attorney. Further, Pantoja testified that while appellant mentioned that he was taking medication, he never requested the medication. Pantoja also testified that appellant was coherent during the conversation, seemed to understand what he was saying, and was not emotional or distraught. Likewise, Detective Samaniego of the El Paso Police Department testified that appellant was coherent and stable when he spoke with the detective and when he signed the confession. Appellant himself testified that he did not take his prescribed medications because he was "paranoid of the deputies" that were assigned to his jail.

In reviewing a trial court's ruling on a motion to suppress, an appellate court views the evidence in the light most favorable to the trial court's ruling. (16) As the sole judge of the credibility of the evidence and witnesses, the trial court had the discretion to believe or disbelieve appellant's allegations that he was unable to voluntarily make a written confession. It also had the discretion to believe or disbelieve the officers' testimony that appellant was coherent and able to make a full and voluntary confession.

Moreover, appellant's conscious choice not to take his medications further demonstrates that his confession was not coerced or involuntary. Even considering all of appellant's allegations in the best light possible, the confession would still not be considered coerced or involuntary, as there was no evidence of overreaching by law enforcement. Absent any such overreaching, conditions such as those claimed by appellant do not render the confession coerced or involuntary. (17) Points of error five and six are overruled.


In point of error seven, appellant claims that the trial court improperly limited the time he had to question venire member Gloria Lopez. During voir dire, venire members were questioned separately. Each member was questioned by both the defense and the prosecution for a maximum of forty-five minutes each. In Lopez's case, the defense was granted an additional fifteen minutes for extra questioning. (18) Another request for five extra minutes by appellant was denied. Appellant claims that the limitation of voir dire, along with the refusal to extend the time for Lopez, prevented him from asking additional questions regarding the burden of proof and Lopez's possible bias towards law enforcement.

The trial court may impose reasonable limits on the time spent questioning venire members. (19) The standard for review of such time limitations is abuse of discretion. (20)

We hold that the trial court did not abuse its discretion by denying appellant's request for additional time. Appellant had already received an additional fifteen minutes, along with the original forty-five, to question Lopez. Furthermore, the record demonstrates that the subjects appellant claims he was prevented from exploring further with additional questions - the burden of proof and Lopez's perceived bias against law enforcement - were addressed during voir dire by appellant. Based on the foregoing, we hold that the totality of the voir dire establishes that the trial judge did not err in refusing appellant's request for more time in examining Lopez. Point of error seven is overruled.


In points of error eight, nine, and ten, appellant claims trial error in the denial of his challenges for cause of three venire members. Appellant exhausted all his preemptory challenges, requested more challenges that were denied, and identified objectionable persons on the jury. (21) In all three instances, appellant claims that the venire member was biased in favor of law enforcement.

A trial court's decision to deny a challenge for cause will not be overturned absent an abuse of discretion by the trial court. (22)

The voir dire of venire member Griffith shows that, during a witness-credibility discussion, he admitted that he might be biased towards a police officer rather than a gang member if he knew who they were beforehand. However, he also stated that he would evaluate the credibility of witnesses based upon what they said, not who they were, and that he would not automatically believe a witness simply because he was a police officer. To be challengeable for cause based on his views about a specific type of witness, a venire member must hold extreme positions with respect to that witness's testimony. (23) With respect to venire member Sudimack, nothing in the record demonstrates any bias in favor of law enforcement. In fact, Sudimack said that law enforcement agents, specifically the FBI, "probably" lie, since they are people too. With respect to venire member Lopez, nothing in the record shows a bias in favor of law enforcement, and appellant has not pointed to any such bias in the record. The trial court did not abuse its discretion in denying appellant's challenges for cause. Points of error eight, nine, and ten are overruled.


In point of error eleven, appellant argues that the trial court erred when it denied his motion for continuance. Appellant alleged that the State failed to timely disclose evidence meeting the materiality standard of Brady v. Maryland, (24) namely "newly revealed claims of problems with the DNA laboratory work" as well as new claims that Billhartz's family was involved with criminal gangs.

In order to establish that the trial court abused its discretion in refusing the continuance, an appellant must show specific prejudice to his defense. (25) With respect to the DNA claims, appellant provides no reference to what DNA tests were questionable. Neither does he show that the State failed to disclose DNA evidence, that DNA evidence was favorable to the defense, or that DNA evidence was material. (26) The only claim appellant makes regarding the relevance of the DNA evidence is a statement that the evidence contained a third person's unidentified DNA. But this fact, even if true, is not material because there was no issue of whether appellant had been in the victim's truck, and there is no evidence regarding where the unidentified DNA was deposited.

Regarding appellant's claim that the family of the deceased was involved with criminal gangs, appellant again fails to show any evidence supporting this allegation, and he provides no authority or argument as to how this alleged evidence was material, much less as to how the lack of a continuance stopped him from investigating these claims. (27) Point of error eleven is overruled.


In point of error twelve, appellant alleges that the trial court erred when it admitted DNA evidence at trial. During the investigation, DNA tests were done on stains on the carpet and the interior of Billhartz's truck. They tested positive for "presumptive blood." The expert who tested the DNA stated that it was a mixture of appellant's, Murgatroyd's and the victim's DNA, with appellant's being stronger than Murgatroyd's. Appellant now argues that the DNA evidence should have been excluded because there were alleged irregularities in the testing, and the defense had no opportunity to test the DNA evidence. According to appellant, there was no time to address either of these two concerns because the State did not turn over the DNA evidence to him until the day before trial. He claims that the State's failure to turn over the material more promptly effectively rendered the information useless, and that, absent a continuance, the proper remedy was exclusion of the evidence.

Appellant relies upon our decision in State v. LaRue. (28) However, in LaRue, we held that exclusion of evidence was proper when the failure to turn over evidence was "willful" and not merely reckless or negligent. (29) There is nothing in the record showing a willful failure to disclose. Therefore, we find that the trial court's admission of the DNA evidence was within its discretion. Point of error twelve is overruled.


In point of error thirteen, appellant claims that the trial court erred when it denied his request to charge the jury with the lesser included offense of murder. However, the record demonstrates that appellant requested that the lesser-included charge of murder be removed, charging appellant solely with capital murder. The trial court refused this request and included jury instructions on both murder and capital murder. Because the record demonstrates that the trial court included a jury instruction on murder, we find his allegation of error to be without merit. Point of error thirteen is overruled.


In point of error fourteen, appellant argues that the trial court erred when it declined to grant appellant's motion to empanel two juries, one for guilt and one for punishment. In point of error sixteen, appellant argues that the trial court erred when it denied appellant's motion to preclude the prosecution from death-qualifying jurors.

In both points, appellant contends that the disqualification of jurors on a punishment phase issue biases the jury against the defendant, producing a jury more likely to convict. With respect to point of error sixteen, he also claims that disqualification of jurors on a punishment phase issue denies the appellant a fair cross-section of society on guilt. The claim that disqualification of jurors on a punishment issue biases the jury with regard to guilt has been rejected by the United States Supreme Court (30) and by this Court. (31) Appellant has presented nothing to distinguish his case from those decisions. Likewise, the idea that the disqualification of jurors on a punishment phase issue denies the appellant a fair cross-section of society when deciding guilt has also been decided adversely to his position. (32) Points of error fourteen and sixteen are overruled.


In point of error fifteen, appellant alleges that the trial court's failure to assign a burden of proof to mitigating evidence, and the resulting failure to inform the jury that it is balancing the mitigating evidence with the aggravating evidence, renders the judgment unconstitutional under the Eighth Amendment. Although we have ruled against this argument many times in the past, (33) appellant relies upon State v. Marsh, a case from the Kansas Supreme Court. (34)

In Kansas, a death sentence is required if the jury finds that aggravating circumstances are not outweighed by mitigating circumstances; if the opposing circumstances are deemed to be equal, the tie is to go to the state. (35) The Kansas Supreme Court found this arrangement to be unconstitutional under the Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments. (36) According to appellant, Texas's death penalty statute "suffers from the same problem" as the Kansas statute. However, subsequent to appellant's brief in the present case, the Kansas decision was reversed by the United States Supreme Court, and Kansas's death penalty statute was found to be constitutional. (37) Point of error fifteen is overruled.

The judgment of the trial court is affirmed.

DELIVERED: June 27, 2007


1. Tex. Penal Code ?19.03(a).

2. Article 37.071 ?2(g). Unless otherwise indicated, all future references to Articles refer to the Code of Criminal Procedure.

3. Jackson v. Virginia, 443 U.S. 307, 319 (1979).

4. Watson v. State, 204 S.W.3d 404, 414-415 (Tex.Crim.App. 2006).

5. Id.

6. Id.

7. Tex. Penal Code ?19.03(a)(2).

8. Tex. Penal Code ?36.06(A)(2)(b).

9. Getts v. State, 155 S.W.3d 153, 155 (Tex.Crim.App. 2005).

10. Vodochodsky v. State, 158 S.W.3d 502, 510 (Tex.Crim.App. 2005).

11. See Terry v. Ohio, 392 U.S. 1 , 20-21 (1968).

12. See Jackson v. State, 745 S.W.2d 4, 11-17 (Tex.Crim.App. 1988).

13. See Tex. Code Crim. Proc. ?38.21.

14. See Green v. State, 934 S.W.2d 92, 98-100 (Tex.Crim.App. 1996).

15. Alvarado v. State, 912 S.W.2d 199, 211 (Tex.Crim.App. 1995).

16. State v. Kelly, 204 S.W.3d 808, 818 (Tex.Crim.App. 2006).

17. See Colorado v. Connelly, 479 U.S. 157, 164-65 (1986).

18. Lopez's case was not the only instance of appellant requesting, and being given, extra time to question a venire member.

19. Cantu v. State, 842 S.W.2d 667, 687 (Tex.Crim.App. 1992).

20. Id.

21. See Sanchez v. State, 165 S.W.3d 707, 712-13 (Tex.Crim.App. 2005).

22. See Burks v. State, 876 S.W.2d 877, 893 (Tex.Crim.App. 1994).

23. See Jones v. State, 982 S.W.2d 386, 390 (Tex.Crim.App. 1988).

24. Brady v. Maryland, 373 U.S. 83 (1963).

25. Renteria v. State, 206 S.W.3d 689 (Tex.Crim.App. 2006).

26. Little v. State, 991 S.W.2d 864, 866 (Tex.Crim.App. 1999).

27. This claim was not made in appellant's original motion for a continuance.

28. 152 S.W.3d 95 (Tex.Crim.App. 2004).

29. Id. at 96-98.

30. Uttecht v. Brown, 127 S. Ct. 2218, 2233 (2007); Bumper v. North Carolina, 391 U.S. 543, 545 (1968).

31. See Canales v. State, 98 S.W.3d 690 (Tex.Crim.App. 2003); Granviel v. State, 552 S.W.2d 107 (Tex.Crim.App. 1976).

32. Lockhart v. McCree, 476 U.S. 162 (U.S. 1986).

33. See Hankins v. State, 132 S.W.3d 380, 386 (Tex.Crim.App. 2004); Valle v. State, 109 S.W.3d 500, 504 (Tex.Crim.App. 2003); Ladd v. State, 3 S.W.3d 547, 558-559 (Tex.Crim.App. 1999).

34. 103 P.3d 445 (Kan. 2004).

35. Id.

36. Id.

37. Kansas v. Marsh,126 S.Ct. 2516 (2006).



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