The Supreme Court today ruled that states cannot rely on IQ tests alone to gauge whether death row inmates are “intellectually disabled” and thus eligible to avoid execution. Today’s decision impacts borderline cases where a defendant’s IQ score falls within the test’s margin of error, making it harder to impose the death penalty in those situations. It’s the first time the Supreme Court has expanded on a landmark 2002 decision that excluded mentally disabled people from capital punishment. It may also ultimately save the life of Freddie Lee Hall, who has spent over 35 years on death row after being convicted of a 1978 murder.

Until now, Florida and other states have adhered to policies that establish a strict cutoff, based around IQ…

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