RENO, NV - The United States District Court for Nevada has denied a death row inmate's petition for Habeas Corpus.
On August 12, United States District Court Judge Robert Jones denied the petition from William Witter, aged 51. Witter claimed that there were multiple instances of trial error and that his counsel provided ineffective assistance.
Witter was convicted by a jury in 1995 of first-degree murder with the use of a deadly weapon, attempted murder with the use of a deadly weapon, attempted sexual assault with use of a deadly weapon, and burglary.
The convictions stem from a 1993 criminal occurrence in which Witter sexually assaulted a woman in an underground Las Vegas parking lot and later stabbed her husband to death when he arrived during the assault and tried to intervene.
Having previously been convicted of a violent felony, the jury imposed a death sentence for the murder. Witter appealed the convictions in state court, but was unsuccessful.
Nevada Attorney General Catherine Masto said, "The district court’s ruling is an important step in ensuring that justice is served in this case and the culmination of years of effort on behalf of my Office and the Office of the Clark County District Attorney. The families of the victims of Witter’s atrocious crimes deserve to see justice in a timely manner, and my Office will continue to fight for them through any appeal.”