Texas execution withdrawn due to new forensics law

The implementation of a new Texas law spared the life of a man whose execution was scheduled for Tuesday.

Arthur Brown Jr., 43, of Los Angeles, Calif., was convicted of killing four people in Houston in 1992 along with accomplices Marion Dudley and Antonia Dudson. Dudley was executed in 2006 while Dudson is currently serving a life sentence.

However, due to a new Texas law, which went into effect Sept. 1, 2013, advanced forensics is now able to identify and match the guns used in the crime with the guns thought to have been used in the crime. The new legislation allows previous convictions to be overturned if advanced forensics proves otherwise, according to the Tuscaloosa News.

On June 20, 1992, Brown and Dudley separated the six victims into different rooms after tying them up and shot each in the back of the head. Dudson drove the getaway car. The Texas Department of Criminal Justice said they were arrested in September of 1992.

The three men were convicted of killing four people, one of which was Jose Tovar, a drug supplier for Brown and his accomplices, according to TDCJ. The other victims included Tovar’s wife’s son, Frank Farias, 17, Farias’ seven-month pregnant girlfriend Jessica Quinones, 19, and neighbor Audrey Brown, 21.

Tovar’s friend, Nicholas Cortez, 22, and Tovar’s wife, Rachel Tovar, survived.

Brown’s attorney wrote in an appeal with the Harris County District Court putting a withdrawal on Brown’s execution while forensics conducts this research, according to the Tuscaloosa News.

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