BREAKING: Stop the Oct. 17 Execution of Robert Roberson

He could be the first person executed based on the debunked shaken baby syndrome hypothesis.

07.01.24 By Innocence Project Staff

12/19/23, Livingston, Texas: Robert Roberson photographed through plexiglass at TDCJ Polunsky Unit. Ilana Panich-Linsman for The Innocence Project

12/19/23, Livingston, Texas: Robert Roberson photographed through plexiglass at TDCJ Polunsky Unit. Ilana Panich-Linsman for The Innocence Project

Today, at the request of the Anderson County District Attorney, the 3rd Judicial District Court in Anderson County set an execution date of Oct. 17, 2024 for Robert Roberson, an innocent father who has spent more than 20 years on Texas’s death row.

Mr. Roberson would be the first person executed in the U.S. based on the discredited shaken baby syndrome hypothesis —  despite overwhelming new evidence showing that his daughter, Nikki, died of natural and accidental causes — unless the courts or Governor Greg Abbott intervenes.

The court set the execution date without granting Mr. Roberson’s previously filed request for a hearing. We have less than 108 days to stop his execution. Here’s how you can help. 

1. Sign the petition:

A broad and diverse group of eminent scientists, medical doctors, faith leaders, former federal judges, along with best-selling novelist John Grisham, and the former lead detective on the case oppose the execution of Mr. Roberson.

As he fights to prove his innocence and reunite with his children, add your name to this petition to stop this grave injustice.

2. Text “ROBERT” to 97016 to receive breaking news and alerts on his case:

Mr. Roberson’s trial was riddled with unfairness and errors. One doctor’s preliminary hunch about shaken baby syndrome was used to arrest Mr. Roberson, even before the autopsy was performed. Despite an innovative Texas statute that expressly allows revisiting trials tainted by false or misleading scientific evidence, Texas courts have disregarded the change in medical and scientific understanding since the time of Mr. Roberson’s trial that invalidates the evidence used to convict and sentence him to death. Since the courts last considered his case, there is even more evidence of his innocence.

Stay up to date and informed about breaking news in Mr. Roberson’s case by texting “Robert” to 97016.

3. Share Mr. Roberson’s story far and wide especially to those in Texas:


@innocenceRobert Roberson is an innocent father with autism who could be executed for a crime that never happened. His conviction was based on outdated and refuted science and inaccurate and misleading medical testimony. Robert must have his actual innocence claim fairly considered by a state actor before Texas makes a tragic, irreversible mistake. Add your name to stop this injustice at the link in bio.

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4. Use your voice:

You’ve done it before for our clients Pervis Payne, Rodney Reed, Julius Jones and Melissa Lucio, the last of whom was just two days away from execution when the court granted a stay. In all, more than 1 million advocates online and on the ground used their voices to call for change.

So here’s what to do: Create an Instagram post, Instagram reel, or TikTok to share the background of Mr. Roberson’s case, the reasons he’s innocent, and all the missteps in this miscarriage of justice, and urge your followers to sign our petition. Use these seven facts to share your story.

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