The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals granted a stay Monday afternoon in the case of Death Row inmate Rodney Reed. Reed was accused of the 1996 murder of Stacey Stites, and he was scheduled for execution on March 5. Since Reed's conviction, many have come out in support of his innocence and argued that, at the very least, further DNA testing is necessary to determine what happened.
Reed's attorney Bryce Benjet, who works with the Innocence Project, said in a statement:
"We’re extremely relieved that the court has stayed Mr. Reed’s execution so there will be proper consideration of the powerful new evidence of his innocence. We are also optimistic that this will give us the opportunity to finally conduct DNA testing that could prove who actually committed the crime."
Reed's conviction depended on the presence of his semen in Stites' body after the murder, but he contends that the two were involved in a longer-term, consensual relationship. Read more about the case here.