Hearings wrap up in Terry Williams appeal

The clock is ticking for Terry Williams, the man scheduled to be excuted next week for the murder of Amos Norwood in 1984. 

Lawyers for Williams and the Commonwealth wrapped up their arguments before a Philadelphia judge in the defendent’s last appeal Tuesday.

Williams’s attorneys argue the Commonwealth did not pursue allegations of sexual abuse that might have resulted in a lighter sentence. Shawn Nolan said reports and notes found during the appeal show the Commonwealth suppressed a version of events that would have cast Norwood in a less favorable light. Since his original trial, Williams has stated that Norwood sexually abused him from the age of 13.

“They’re trying to have Terry executed when they have continually hid evidence in this case that certainly would have changed the verdict,” said Nolan.

The Commonwealth argued the documents presented at the hearing, such as a police report citing a separate accusation of sexual misconduct involving a minor, are not significant.

The state Board of Pardons rejected Williams’s first plea for clemency but will consider on Thursday whether to rehear the case in light of the new information uncovered by Williams’ defense team.

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