A federal District Court judge ordered a new sentencing trial for Quintez Hodges, who is currently on Mississippi‘s death row, because former Assistant District Attorney James Kitchens, Jr., lied under oath during Hodges’s trial and the prosecutor conducting the trial should have known that Kitchens’ testimony was false.
Kitchens is now a judge on Mississippi’s circuit court.
As a part of the prosecution’s strategy to show Hodges lacked remorse and had a criminal history, Kitchens falsely testified that Hodges was given a light sentence on a previous robbery charge. The judge ruled, “[The defendant] has shown that there exists a reasonable likelihood that the jury’s verdict might have been affected as a result of the false testimony. In this instance, the State, seemingly unconcerned with the accuracy of the testimony to be given in a trial where the result could be death, provided the jury with false information.”
(R. Balko, “Federal Judge Rules That a Former Mississippi Prosecutor, Now a Judge, Lied in Court,” Reason.com Blog, September 14, 2010).