Texas was correct to execute Edgar Tamayo, a Mexico native convicted of killing a Houston police officer, according to state Senator Wendy Davis.
The Democratic candidate for governor said Monday that Tamayo received due process, despite objections from the Mexican government and U.S. State Department that the execution violated international law.
“I believe that the penalty that he received in accordance with his crime was one that was deserved,” Davis told Fusion’s Jorge Ramos on Monday.
Tamayo, 46, was executed last Wednesday. In 1994, he shot a police officer in the back of the head after being arrested following a robbery. Tamayo was convicted and sentenced to death for his crime. But law enforcement never informed him of his right to seek help from the Mexican consulate, which violated the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations.
Mexican officials had called for the execution to be blocked. In 2004, the International Court of Justice ordered the U.S. to review 50 cases where Mexican nationals were denied their consular rights, including Tamayo’s.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry wanted the execution delayed and reviewed, saying that going ahead with it could hurt the way American citizens are treated in other countries.
But Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) rebuffed those concerns, arguing that Tamayo should be subject to state laws. Davis, a frequent critic of Perry, agreed with him on this capital case.
“[Tamayo] of course had the opportunity of a due process system here in the United States. He killed a police officer,” she said. “I do think that every person who faces a serious, of course, consequence like that deserves all that the law — the protections of the law should provide. And in his instance, that was provided here.”
The death penalty remains popular in Texas; 73 percent of voters there support it, according to a 2012 University of Texas/Texas Tribune poll. A smaller majority, 51 percent, say capital punishment is fairly applied.
Jordan Fabian is Fusion's politics editor, writing about campaigns, Congress, immigration, and more. When he's not working, you can find him at the ice rink or at home with his wife, Melissa.