Associated Press, Aug. 20, 2002
As a result of the decision, Doty’s murder case is expected to be the first trial in Pima County to have a jury convened to determine punishment using new legislation on death sentences.
“It’s brand new for us, and we don’t know how long it’s going to take to empanel a jury,” Pima County prosecutor Rick Unklesbay told the Tucson Citizen. “And it’s going on all over the state (in other cases).”
Dawley set a Jan. 7 date to convene a jury to determine if aggravating circumstances exist, and whether to impose the death penalty.
“It’s going to be time- consuming and expensive,” he said.
Arizona’s new sentencing system was created during a special session of the Legislature after the U.S. Supreme Court voided the state’s death penalty law in June.
The high court ruled that only juries, not judges, could decide whether circumstances in a killing warrant the death penalty.
In Arizona, judges had been allowed to make that determination.
On Aug. 1, the Legislature changed the law so juries would determine all three parts of a capital punishment case – guilt, whether there are aggravating circumstances and whether to impose the death penalty.
Last week, Doty was sentenced to 25 years in prison for a separate conviction in the death of Joseph McDowell, 29, who died in a car crash that occurred while Doty was fleeing Pima County sheriff’s deputies.