Monday, December 27, 2010


Appeals Court Reinstates Death Sentence

The U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals has reinstated a death sentence for Kentucky inmate 65 year old Parramore Lee Sanborn. Then-Governor Paul Patton signed Sanborn's death warrant in December 1996, which a judge later stopped. Sanborn was convicted for the 1983 kidnapping, rape and murder of Barbara Heilman in Henry County. Sanborn was originally convicted and sentenced to death in March 1984. The Kentucky Supreme Court reversed that decision in 1988 and granted Sanborn a new trial. He was convicted and sentenced to death again in 1991.

Psychiatrist Victoria Skelton questioned Sanborn in 1991 about his planned defense. Skelton had examined Sanborn because he was claiming extreme emotional distress at the time of the murder. U.S. District Judge Karen Coffman threw out the death sentence in 2007, saying Skelton violated Sanborn's right to attorney-client privilege by asking him about confidential conversations then telling prosecutors and testifying about what she learned. The court concluded there was no legal violation when Skelton questioned Sanborn about his planned defense.

The Kentucky Supreme Court at one time called the case a particularly vicious and shocking premeditated murder.

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