Danny Lee Hill

Federal appeals court throws out death sentence for Ohio boy's 1985 slaying

CINCINNATI -- A federal appeals court has thrown out a three-decades-old death sentence for a man convicted in the rape, torture and murder of a 12-year-old Ohio boy.

The U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati said death row inmate Danny Hill can’t be executed because he is mentally disabled.

A three-judge panel convicted the 51-year-old Hill of aggravated murder following the 1985 attack on Raymond Fife in Warren.

The U.S. Supreme Court has banned the execution of people with mental disabilities. Courts use a three-part test when measuring mental disability including IQ, skill level and whether the disability showed itself before age 18.

The appeals court said last week that Hill meets all three measures without question.

The Attorney General’s Office couldn’t immediately say if an appeal was planned.

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