In a decision released Wednesday, November 16, 2016, the Louisiana Supreme Court vacated a 2013 capital conviction in Caddo District Court and ordered a new trial for the accused, Rodricus C. Crawford.
Following indictment by the Caddo Parish Grand Jury, Crawford was convicted in November 2013 for the February 2012 death of his one-year-old son, Roderius Lott. A Caddo Parish jury unanimously found Crawford guilty and sentenced him to death.
“Today, November 16, 2016, the Louisiana Supreme Court issued an opinion in the case of State of Louisiana versus Rodricus C. Crawford vacating the conviction and sentence,” states Caddo Parish District Attorney James E. Stewart Sr. “The case has been remanded to the trial court for a new trial.
“In light of this opinion of the Louisiana Supreme Court, including the dissenting opinions of justices of the Louisiana Supreme Court to acquit the defendant of the charge, the Caddo Parish District Attorney will reassign the case to a new assistant district attorney for re-evaluation of case in order to make a determination of a proper course of action to proceed forward in this matter. Since the matter is now a pending matter before the court, this office will not make any further comment at this time.”
The 35-page decision by Associate Justice John L. Weimer, along with opinions by fellow associate justices that concur in part and dissent in part or in toto, can be read online at the Louisiana Supreme Court website, http://www.lasc.org/news_releases/2016/2016-068.asp.