Appeals court orders review in Fort Worth death penalty case

HUNTSVILLE, Texas (AP) — The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals is asking a Tarrant County trial court to review two of three appeals claims that prompted the state’s top criminal court to stop the scheduled May execution of 37-year-old Tilon Carter for the slaying of an 89-year-old man in Fort Worth.

Carter is on death row for 2004 killing of James Tomlin during a robbery at his home.

The appeals court Wednesday told the trial court in Carter’s case to resolve questions raised by the prisoner’s lawyers about the propriety of a medical examiner’s trial testimony regarding Tomlin’s cause of death. The appeals court also wants the trial court to examine statements from three forensic pathologists who contend the prosecutors’ theory that Tomlin’s death was a capital murder wasn’t supported by the autopsy findings.