On this page, you will find all the past and current legal motions filed by the state and Thomas Arthur.
Arthur's first conviction and sentence to death for the murder of Troy Wicker was reversed by the Alabama Supreme court on May 10, 1985. Ex parte Arthur, 472 So. 2d 665 (Ala. 1985)
Arthur was convicted and sentenced to death a second time for the Troy Wicker murder, but his second conviction and sentenced were reversed by the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals. Arthur v. State, 575 So. 2d 1165 (Ala. Crim. App. 1990)
Arthur was tried a third time for the murder of Troy wicker and convicted on December 5, 1991. (CR. 11, R. 1150) The trial court, following the jury's recommendation, sentenced Arthur to death on January 24, 1992 (Cr. 12, 14-27:R 1237, 1291-1300).
The Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals affirmed Arthur's conviction and death sentence on March 8, 1996. Arthur v. State, 711 So. 2d 1031 (Ala. Crim. App. 1996)
The Alabama Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the Court of Criminal Appeals on November 21, 1997. Ex parte Arthur, 711 So. 2d 1097 (Ala. 1997) Arthur's application for re-hearing was denied 1998.
Justice Denied magazine published an article in the fall of 1999 about Thomas Arthur's case and included his plea for a lawyer to step forward to handle his state and federal post-conviction appeals pro bono, because Alabama doesn't provide a post-conviction lawyer for a death row prisoner. Read Justice Denied Article
Arthur did not petition for the writ of certiorari to the Supreme Court of the United States, or did he seek state of federal collateral review at any time before January 25, 2001. *Note: During this time Arthur was desperately seeking a "voluntary attorney". He did not have an attorney. Read Article
On September 15, 2000, the State filed an "Amended Motion to Set Execution Date" in the Supreme Court of Alabama.
On January 25, 2001, Arthur, proceeding through counsel, filed his rule 32 Petition in the Tenth Judicial Circuit Court of Jefferson County, Alabama . The Rule 32 Petition was dismissed as untimely on March 5, 2001. *Note: By the time Arthur found counsel, his petition was filed late.
On March 23, 2001, the Alabama Supreme Court entered its order setting Friday, April 27, 2001, as Arthur's execution date.
On March 28, 2001, Arthur filed a motion to reconsider the dismissal of the Rule 32 petition in the Tenth Circuit of Jefferson County Alabama, and on April 4, 2001, Arthur filed a "Motion for stay of Execution" in the Alabama Supreme Court.
On April 11, 2001, the Alabama Supreme Court denied Arthur's motion to stay his execution.
On April 20, 2001, Arthur filed his "Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus" and his Motion for Stay of Execution" in this Court. After consideration of written and oral arguments, this court entered its order granting Arthur's motion for stay on April 25, 2001. The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals denied Respondent's motion to vacate dissolve the stay on April 26, 2001.
Because Arthur's March 28, 2001, motion reconsider was pending in the Tenth Judicial Circuit Court in Jefferson County Alabama , this court stayed consideration of the present habeas corpus petition until the conclusion of the state court proceedings initiated by Arthur's Rule 32 Petition.
The Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals affirmed the denial and dismissal of the state post-conviction petition on April 25, 2001. Arthur v. State, 820 So. 2d 886 (Ala. Crim. app. 201) State court review of Arthur's Rule 32 Petition concluded when the Alabama Supreme Court denied Arthur's petition for the writ of certiorari on November 2, 2001.
On May 13, 2002, the United States Supreme Court denied Arthur's petition for writ of certiorari from his state court Rule 32 proceedings.
The District Court for the Northern District of Alabama entered its memorandum of opinion on December 4, 2002.
The District Court for the Northern District of Alabama entered it's memorandum of opinion denying Arthur's motion to alter or amend judgment on June 4, 2003.
The Circuit Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit decision was entered on June 21 2006
The opinion of the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals was entered August 14, 2006.
On September 21, 2006, Justice Thomas extended the time for filing a petition for writ of certiorari to January 11, 2007.
On January 11, 2007, Arthur files Petition for A Writ of Certiorari Writ Of Certio
April 12, 2007 Arthur filed a complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C. & 1983 challenging the constitutionality of Alabama's refusing to release evidence that could prove innocence. this civil rights action was filed seeking evidence physical evidence, including a rape kit and blood stained clothing, that has never been subjected to DNA testing. See Complaint filed
On April 16, 2007, The Alabama Supreme Court sets the execution date for September 27, 2007. Death Order
On May 17th, Arthur filed in the Supreme court of Alabama a memorandum in Opposition To the State of Alabama's Motion To Set An Execution Date. See Respondent's Memorandum
On August 17, 2007, Thomas Arthur request to access and test the DNA evidence was turned down by the Middle District Court of Alabama.. The Judge ruled it could not help him prove his innocence!!!! Read the Court Documents and Judges Opinion
September7, 2007, a Brief of Thomas Arthur was filed with the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit on their decision to deny DNA evidence and the right to discovery. Read Brief Of Thomas Arthur
September 12, 2007, A Motion of Appellant Thomas D. Arthur Was filed For A Stay of Execution in the United States court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. See Motion for Stay
September 12, 2007 A Brief of Thomas D. Arthur was filed in the United States Court of appeals For the Eleventh Circuit for a request that the court hear oral argument in regard to DNA evidence and newly discovered evidence bearing on the plaintiffs innocence. Read Entire Brief Of Thomas D. Arthur
September 17, 2007 The U.S. Court of Appeals For The Eleventh circuit denies Artery's lethal Injection motion as being cruel and unusual punishment because it was filed before the execution date was set. But then saying it was filed too late. Two Judges dissented on the decision Read The Courts Decision
September 21, 2007 The U.S Court of Appeals Eleventh Circuit For the Eleventh Circuit denied Arthur DNA Motion to stay of execution as moot. See Courts Decision
September 21, 2007 A Motion For Stay Of Execution was filed in the Supreme Court Of The United States by Arthur. Read Motion For Stay
September 21, 2007, A Petition for a Writ Of Certiorari (Lethal Injection) was filed by Arthur in The Supreme Court of the United States. See Writ of Certiorari
September 24, 2007, The State filed a Brief of Respondents In Opposition To Certiorari And Accompanying Application For Stay Of Execution. See States Brief In Opposition
September 25, 2007 Arthur files A Petition For A Writ Of Certiorari (DNA ) In The Supreme Court of the United States. See Writ Of Certiorari (DNA)
September 25, 2007 A Motion for Stay Of Execution (Based On DNA Testing) was filed In the Supreme Court Of The United States. Read Motion
September 25, 2007 An Emergency Motion Of Thomas D Arthur For A Stay Of Execution was Filed In The Supreme Court Of Alabama. Read Emergency Motion
September 26, 2007, The State filed Petition Brief Of Respondent In Opposition To Petition And In Opposition To A Stay Of Execution (DNA Based) Read Petition
September 26, 2007 Thomas Arthur filed a Supplemental Brief In The United States Supreme Court. Read Supplemental Brief
September 26, 2007 Thomas Arthur filed a second Supplemental Brief In The Supreme Court Of The United States. Read Second Supplemental Brief Artery's attorneys received a call from the Governor's legal advisor Scott Rouse informing them that Alabama was changing their lethal injection protocol. Arthur daughter was actually doing a live interview with a local TV station when the attorneys called her, and said they were filing a second brief. The reporter was sitting right there and that statement was broadcast live that evening that the State was changing it's lethal injection protocol, but was intending on executing Arthur anyway. This probably saved Arthurs life the next day, along with all the media pressure on the Governor about the DNA testing.
September 26, 2007 The State filed a petition In The Supreme court Of The United States Respondents Reply to Supplemental Brief Read Respondent's Reply
September 27, 2007, as Arthur's daughter was spending her last 15 minutes with her father alive, a call came in from the Governors office that Arthur had been granted a 45 day "reprieve". See Governors 45 Day Reprieve
September 27, 2007 , The Governor immediately issued a press release that the reprieve was only to give the State time to change it's protocol, and there was "overwhelming evidence that Arthur was guilty and would be executed immediately following the 45 day reprieve". (on the home page, you can click on the over whelming circumstantial evidence, and then you can click on the crime scene evidence that could be DNA tested to prove Arthur was not at the crime scene and someone else committed the murder, but the Governor has denied the DNA testing at Artery's expense, and prefers to murder someone with circumstantial evidence opposed to scientific DNA testing) See Governor's Press Release
October 04, 2007 Respondent , Thomas Arthur filed a Supplemental Memorandum In Opposition To the State Of Alabama's Motion To Set An Execution Date. This was filed In The Supreme court Of Alabama. See Motion
October 04, 2007 A Motion (Opposition to Lethal Injection) Was filed In The Supreme Court of the United States by Arthur. Petitioners Response To Brief In Opposition. (On Petition for a Writ of Certiorari To The United States Court of appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.) See Petition Filed
October 09, 2007, Arthur filed a Civil Action Complaint (Lethal Injection Based) In The United States District Court for The Southern District Of Alabama. Civil Action No. CV. 07-772 See Civil Action Complaint
October 09, 2007, Arthur filed a DNA Motion In The Supreme Court of the United States. Petitioners Reply To Brief In Opposition (On Petition For A Writ Of Certiorari To the United States Court Of Appeals For the Eleventh Circuit) See DNA Motion To Supreme Court Of United States
October 12, 2007, Arthur filed a Second Supplemental Memorandum In Opposition To The State Of Alabama's Motion To Set An Execution Date. Filed In the Supreme Court Of Alabama See Second Supplemental Memorandum
October 19, 2007 Arthur filed a Third Supplemental Memorandum to the Alabama Supreme Court of Alabama, in opposition of the State setting an execution date. See Third Supplemental Memorandum
October 31, 2007, the Alabama Supreme Court Set a new execution date for Thomas Arthur December 06, 2007 See New Death Order
October 31, 2007, The State filed a motion with the Southern District of Alabama, Southern Division to dismiss Arthur 1983 Action Challenging Alabama's Method of Execution See States Motion To Dismiss
November, the Governors Office Policy Director, Bryan Taylor verbally requested from the Innocence Project, guidance on how the Governors Office should approach requests for post-conviction DNA testing in capital cases. November 05, 2007 The Innocence Project based in New York sent the requested information to the governor's Office. See Letter From Innocence Project
November 02, 2007 Arthur filed in the Alabama Supreme Court, a Motion To Vacate The Order Setting An Execution Date of December 06, 2007 See Motion To Vacate
November 05, 2007 Arthur filed in the United States District Court For The Southern District Of Alabama, A Memorandum Of Law In Opposition To The States Motion To Dismiss Arthur 2nd Lethal Injection Motion. See Motion Of Opposition
November 09, 2007, The State filed In The United States District Court For the Southern District Of Alabama, A Motion In Opposition To Arthur Motion To Dismiss See States Motion
November 14, 2007 The Supreme Court Of Alabama ordered that Arthur Motion to Vacate Execution date set for December 06, 2007 is Denied. See Alabama Supreme Court Ruling
November 15, 2007 The United States District Court For The Southern District Of Alabama Southern Division , Judge William H. Steele granted the States Motion To Dismiss See Judges Ruling
November 26, 2007, The United States Supreme Court denied Arthur's motion to have the crime scene evidence DNA tested. ( A copy of this ruling will be available later) This decision was based on the fact that Arthur filed his habeas corpus petition late in 2001. This decision is based on the AEDPA (Anti terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996) See AEDPA Law. "This law takes away the Supreme Courts power to review a court of appeals denial of that permission, thus placing final authority for the filing of the petition in the hands of the federal court of appeals. So in the United States, there is no statue of limitations on conviction of murder, but there is a statue of limitations on proving your innocence". In 2001 ,when Arthur was late filing his habeas corpus, he did not have an attorney. Alabama is the only state in the United States that does not provide death row inmates the right to an attorney during post-conviction appeals (habeas corpus) and by the time he found an attorney to represent him pro-bono, his habeas corpus & rule 32 were filed late. See Cuss DNA Motion Denied
November 26, 2007 Arthur filed a petition for stay of execution in the United States Supreme Court based on constitutionality of lethal injection. See Motion For Stay
November 28, 2007, A Class Action Petition was filed was filed in the Middle District Court of Alabama Northern Division by a private citizen of Alabama who feels her Constitutional & Civil rights are being violated by the State of Alabama by refusing to DNA test the crime scene evidence. Read Class Action Petition
November 29, 2007 in the United States Supreme Court ,the State filed a petition of opposition To Artery's petition for stay of execution. See states petition of opposition
November 30, 2007 Judge Myron H Thompson In the District Court Of the United States Middle District of Alabama, Northern District ruled there is good cause for Debbie Murphree's Class Action Civil Petition be referred to the United States Magistrate Judge for consideration of pre-trial matters. Read Judges Ruling
January 28, 2008 in the United States Court of Appeals for The Eleventh Circuit, Arthur filed a brief for appeal of the second lethal injection complaint. See Brief Filed In Eleventh Circuit
February 21, 2008 Filed in the Eleventh Circuit, by the State of Alabama to dismiss Arthurs 2nd lethal injection Challenge. See Motion
April 16, 2008, the United States Supreme court cleared the way for executions to resume by voting 7to 2 the method of Lethal Injection does not violate the Constitution. (Baze V. Rees) Read USSC Opinion
April 21, 2008, the United States Supreme Court denied Arthur and hundred of death row inmates their writ of certiorari. some were granted, but most denied, including Arthur's , lifting his stay that was granted December 06, 2007. See List of orders USSC
April 21, 2008, filed in the Supreme Court of Alabama, by the State of Alabama, Renewed Motion To Set An Execution Date for Arthur. See Motion
April 25, 2008, filed in the Supreme Court of Alabama, by Arthur, Opposition to the State of Alabama's Renewed Motion To Set An Execution Date Read Respopndent's Memorandum
States Brief in support of Motion to Set Execution Date. See Motion
June 30, 2008, State of Alabama sets Execution date for July 31, 2008.
July 03, 2008, Arthur motion to stay execution with United Sates Court of Appeals Eleventh Circuit Read Motion
July 21, 2008, Arthur files Motion for Access to DNA Evidence in The Supreme Court of Alabama Read Motion
July 23, 2008 The United States Court of appeals for the Eleventh Circuit denies Arthur's motion for a stay of execution. Read Order
July 24, 2008 State files Opposition to Arthurs Motion for Access to DNA Evidence in The Supreme Court of Alabama. See Motion
July 29, 2008, The Supreme Court of Alabama denies motion for Access to DNA testing. See Order
July 29, 2008 Arthur files for Emergency Stay of Execution in the Alabama Supreme Court based on confession of real killer. See Motion
July 30, 2008 The Supreme Court of Alabama ordered a stay of execution. See Order
August 07, 2008 State files a renewed motion in the Supreme Court of Alabama to re-set an execution date. See Motion
August 07, 2008 State files application for a rehearing in the Supreme Court of Alabama. See Application
August 19, 2008 Arthur files memorandum in opposition to the State's motion to re-set execution date. See Memorandum
August 19, 2008 Arthur files Opposition to the State's Application for Rehearing of Alabama Supreme Courts Order Granting a Stay of Execution See Opposition
August 20, 2008 The Innocence Project files Motion for Leave To file a Brief of Amicus Curia in Supreme Court of Alabama See Motion
August 20, 2008 The Innocence Project files Brief of Amicus Curiae Opposing rehearing of Alabama Supreme Courts Order granting Stay of Execution Read Brief
October 2008, A February 17, 2009 hearing is scheduled in the Alabama Jefferson County Circuit Court with Judge Pulliam to determine if Thomas Arthur should be allowed to DNA test crime scene evidence and be allowed to have his evidence presented in a Court of Law.
February 17 hearing scheduled in Jefferson Circuit Court (# 92 Above) has been rescheduled for April 14, 2009.
April 15th, 2009, Judge Pulliam of Alabama's Jefferson county Circuit Court, granted Thomas Arthur DNA testing of 3 items collected at the crime scene in 1982. Testing must be completed in 45 days. Thomas Arthur's request for a new trial will be determined by Judge Pulliam once the DNA testing is completed.
July 10, 2009 DNA test results were given to Judge Pulliam. The Judge gave the defense and the state the DNA test results under"seal." She also issued a Court Order to the defense and to the state not to disclose the DNA test results. The single hair ordered for testing was lost by the Alabama Department of Forensics. All items ordered for testing were present the day of hearing April 15th, 2009. The DNA test results were negative for both Bobby Ray Gilbert and Thomas Arthur. See DNA test results
August 10th, 2009 Judge Pulliam ruled based on DNA test results, Bobby Ray Gilbert is lying and could not have been at he crime scene. Furthermore, Judge Pulliam ruled Arthur had perpetrated fraud against the court. The most crucial piece of evidence, could not be tested with advanced testing. The advanced DNA testing needed is not available in Alabama's Forensic Department. The Advanced DNA testing was requested by Arthur to be done at a more advanced lab and the request was denied by Pullliam.
September 01, 2009 Judge Pulliam issued Final written order denying Arthurs Rule 32 Relief. See Final Order
September 08 2009 State files a motion to set execution date. See Motion
September 25, 2009 Arthur files Memorandum in Opposition to Sates Motion to set Execution date. See Motion