Death-Row Inmate Petitions Federal Court After Nebraska Supreme Court Decision

NORFOLK, Nebraska – Death-row inmate Jorge Galindo has filed a petition in federal court seeking to overturn his convictions and sentence for his involvement in the U.S. Bank killings in Norfolk in 2002. This move comes after an unsuccessful attempt to have the Nebraska Supreme Court rehear his case, following a split decision in September that upheld a District Court judge’s decision to deny Galindo postconviction relief without a hearing.

Galindo and two others were responsible for a deadly bank robbery that resulted in the deaths of five people. Despite their violent actions, the trio left the bank empty-handed and was soon apprehended. They were subsequently sentenced to death, with Galindo receiving the death penalty five times over.

After being denied an evidentiary hearing, Galindo appealed to the Nebraska Supreme Court, where oral arguments were heard last year. His attorney, Adam Sipple, argued that allegations of prosecutorial misconduct and ineffective assistance of counsel warranted a hearing to explore the claims.

In a partial dissent, Justice Jonathan Papik expressed disagreement with the majority’s decision regarding the allegations against the county attorney. He believed that Galindo should be granted an evidentiary hearing to further investigate the claims.

Despite the serious nature of the allegations, the majority found that even if proven true, they would not amount to anything more than harmless error. However, they made it clear that the severity of the allegations against the county attorney should not be downplayed.

On December 9, Sipple filed a motion to stay the mandate from being issued, while Galindo seeks review of various federal questions. Two days later, assistant federal public defenders filed a 375-page petition for a writ of habeas corpus on Galindo’s behalf, raising 37 claims.

Galindo’s relentless pursuit of postconviction relief underscores the complexities and challenges associated with death penalty cases, particularly when allegations of prosecutorial misconduct and conflicts of interest are brought into question. The legal battle continues as Galindo seeks to have his case reconsidered, with the hope of overturning his death sentences.