Las Vegas Sun

October 24, 2014

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Nevada court denies ‘fundamental miscarriage of justice’ in appeal of death row inmate

The Nevada Supreme Court has rejected the petition of death row inmate William Castillo, who claimed that faulty jury instructions resulted in a “fundamental miscarriage of justice.”

The court said there was adequate evidence to convict Castillo of first-degree murder and six other felonies in the death of 86-year-old Isabelle Brendt in Las Vegas.

The court denied the first appeal of Castillo in 1998 and a second petition in February 2004. It noted the current petition for a writ of habeas corpus was filed five years after the first petition.

The court said the current petition lists new issues that should have been raised in the first appeal and that Castillo was abusing the process.

Castillo, now 40 years old, was accused of breaking into the home of Brendt, a retired school teacher, in December 1995. Brendt was asleep when Castillo hit her with a tire iron and then smothered her with a pillow. A jury said the murder was premeditated and deliberate.

Castillo stole a VCR, money, silverware and other items from her home across the street from Western High School.

A co-defendant, Michelle Platou, entered into a plea bargain and received life in prison with the possibility of parole.

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