Manuel Ortiz is on death row in Louisiana for a crime he didn’t commit. His innocence hearing in February went well but both the prosecutor and defense attorney have more witnesses they want to call. We had hoped this next hearing would come at the end of this month, but now it’s not going to happen until April 21. That’s yet another month of waiting for Manuel.
I went to visit him last week with my friend and co-worker Rose Vines. He’d just learned about the month-long delay of the hearing and it hit him hard. Simply visiting on death row is emotionally sapping; it’s hard to imagine what it’s like to be stuck there, day after day, year in, year out, with the threat of execution hanging over you. Manuel’s patience in such circumstances is extraordinary.
I’ll let you know how things go after the next round in court. Keep Manuel in your thoughts and prayers.
- Sister Helen