Anzel's Death Reprieve

6-23-05 - One of Texoma's most notorious killers had his death sentence commuted this week to a life term. Anzel Jones was a juvenile when he killed a Paris woman, and a Supreme Court ruling last spring could eventually set him free.

This week Gov. Rick Perry signed off on a Supreme Court order that will take Anzel Jones off death row.

Though barely old enough to drive, ten years ago a 17-year-old Anzel Jones murdered a Paris woman.

A crime he was sentenced to die for, but will not after his sentence was commuted Wednesday.

It was a crime he showed no remorse for, killing Sherry Jones in 1995.

But now Anzel Jones is one of 28 capital murder inmates who will serve life in prison rather than receive the death penalty.

That's because all were under 18-years-old when they committed the crimes.

Last march the Supreme Court ruled that executing juveniles violates the eighth amendment forcing Gov. Rick Perry to sign all of those commutations.

Grayson County District Attorney Joe Brown says it is a dangerous move to take the decision out of the hands of a jury.

This decision means that Jones could one day walk the streets again.

Texas does not have life without parole, which means Jones will be parole eligible in forty years.

Texas was one of 18 states that allowed the practice of executing juveniles before the Supreme Court ruled against it.