Fewer than 10 men sit on the military’s “Death Row.” Only one of them, Ronald Gray, has had a death warrant signed by the President, as is required before a military prisoner can be executed. Since President Bush approved Gray’s sentence in 2008, Gray has been pursuing a habeas appeal through the federal court for the District of Kansas. A couple of weeks ago, Gray filed for a writ of error coram nobis at the Army Court of Criminal Appeals and now wants his habeas case stayed until the Army Court acts on the petition.
Not knowing the contents of the writ and making no judgment as to whether a writ should issue or habeas should be granted, it seems that the government is arguing in circles in this case. First, the government argued that Gray hadn’t exhausted his military appeals before going to federal district court. Then, the government says the district court case shouldn’t be stayed for the military proceedings because Gray should have raised those issues in a previous appeal. One thing is certain–Gray’s appeals are far from over.