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Jun 13,2008
Killer's appeal alleges judge-D.A. affair
by UPI

AUSTIN, Texas -- Condemned Texas killer Charles Dean Hood sought to have his 1990 murder conviction overturned because the judge allegedly was dating the district attorney.

Hood is scheduled to be executed on Tuesday.

The appeal, filed in Austin Thursday, charged that Judge Verla Sue Holland, now retired, could not have provided a fair and impartial trial while involved in a long-term intimate relationship with then-Collin County District Attorney Tom O'Connell, the Austin American-Statesman said.

O'Connell played an active role in prosecuting Hood for the double slaying that put him on death row.

This was the third time the alleged secret affair was used in an appeal but this time, Hood's lawyers feel they can prove it happened. A former assistant district attorney signed a sworn statement June 3 calling the Holland-O'Connell relationship "common knowledge" in the prosecutor's office.

Hood was convicted of killing his boss, Ronald Williamson, and Williamson's girlfriend, Tracie Wallace, in their Plano, Texas, home in 1989.

Copyright © 2008, by United Press International. All Rights Reserved.

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