Supreme Court rejects Sherman man’s death sentence review

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SHERMAN, Texas (KXII) — The United States Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday that it will not hear the case of the murder of Andre Lee Thomas in the Sherman capital.

According to the Grayson County District Attorney’s Office, Thomas was convicted in the Grayson County 15th District Court in March 2005 of the capital murder of a child, Leyha Marie Hughes, in Sherman on March 27, 2004, and sentenced to death by a jury. Thomas had pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity.

Evidence at trial showed that on March 27, 2004, Thomas walked to the residence of his estranged wife, Laura Christine Thomas, and upon entering, brutally stabbed her and her two young children, Andre Lee Boren and Leyha Hughes, to death.

The district attorney’s office said Thomas then stabbed himself and then turned himself in to police. He underwent surgery and was later held in Grayson County Jail where he had one of his eyes removed. He was initially found incompetent and hospitalized, but was later found fit to stand trial.

According to the prosecutor’s office, the case was appealed to the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, where it was upheld on direct appeal and on a subsequent appeal by way of a writ of habeas corpus. Appeals have also been filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, and now the U.S. Supreme Court, all of which upheld the conviction and sentence.

“This opinion issued today by the Supreme Court is an affirmation of 18 years of hard work by our office, law enforcement and the Attorney General’s office,” Grayson County Attorney Brett Smith said. “Our office will continue to work diligently to fight for justice on behalf of these family members of the victims in this case. It was probably one of the most horrific murder cases in Grayson County history.

Grayson County 15th District Court will seek an execution date pending further pleadings or motions being filed.

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