Martin, 40, was convicted of capital murder and sentenced
to death in February 1986 for killing Powell and stealing his wallet while
Powell was test driving a vehicle in a new subdivision where homes were
under construction. Martin came within 3 days of being executed in 1990
before the Alabama Supreme Court delayed his case so he could pursue additional
The criminal appeals court said several key pieces of evidence were withheld from Martin's defense lawyer, including that a key witness gave police a statement while under hypnosis and that another witness had tentatively identified a different person in a police lineup. "They would have had a difficult time trying this case 16 years ago if this evidence had been revealed," said
defense attorney Ken Rose, director of the Center for Death Penalty Litigation in Durham, N.C.