Death Row Inmate Who Cut Out His Eyes Seeks Clemency for Mental Illness

A blind Texas Death Row inmate, Andre Thomas, is seeking clemency after murdering his estranged wife and two young children while suffering from hallucinations

Atorneys of Texas death row inmate Andre Thomas filed a clemency petition, ABC13 reports.

The appeal was filed to Gov. Abbott and the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles requesting to “commute” the 39-year-old’s life sentence in prison or re-examine Thomas’ proposed April 5 execution date. So far, the petition has 100 signatures from Texas faith leaders who opposed his upcoming execution.  

Thomas is on death row for the 2004 murder of his estranged wife, Laura Boren, their 4-year-old son, Andre Jr., and Boren’s 1-year-old daughter, Leyha Hughes. Thomas has admitted to the crimes and said God told him to carry out the act, believing they were demons, per the New York Post. Thomas was found guilty of the youngest child’s murder. The jury rejected his insanity plea, immediately putting him on death row. 

Thomas has had hallucinations since he was 9-years-old.

He’s been placed in a Houston unit for severely mentally ill prisoners. Since his arrest, on separate occasions, the he gauged out both of his eyes, digesting one, and saying he did not want the government to hear his thoughts. The permanently blind prisoner is now under heavy medication as his execution date approaches. 

“Andre Thomas is one of the most mentally ill prisoners in Texas history, and only the most mentally ill person could undertake these acts of permanent self-mutilation. If ever there was a case that warranted mercy, it is this one,” his attorney, Maurie Levine said. 

Levine also stated that Thomas sought medical help the day before he carried out the murders. But, as he sat alone without receiving support, Thomas is said to have left after feeling hopeless. 

Latest in Life