Death Penalty Rejected for Man who Killed Ex-Girlfriend’s Parents in Akron, Ohio

FILE – In this June 29, 2015 file photo, Shawn Ford Jr. (left) looks upward as he listens to Jessica Schobert, the oldest daughter of Margaret and Jeffrey Schobert (top, bottom right) after he was sentenced to death by Summit County Common Pleas Court Judge Tom Parker for the murder of Margaret Schobert in Akron, Ohio. The Ohio Supreme Court has rejected the death sentence for Ford Jr., Thursday, Nov. 7, 2019, and ordered a new sentencing hearing. (Karen Schiely/Akron Beacon Journal via AP, File)

A man on death row for killing his ex-girlfriend’s parents with a sledgehammer is getting a new hearing after the Ohio Supreme Court ruled his IQ might be too low for him to have been condemned.

Shawn Ford Jr. was convicted in Summit County in 2015 of aggravated murder and other charges in the slayings of Margaret and Jeffrey Schobert two years earlier.

Defense attorneys argued that Ford’s low IQ should have prevented the judge from sentencing their client to death. The high court’s 5-2 ruling Thursday upheld Ford’s conviction but ordered a hearing to determine if his intellectual disability prohibits his execution.

Summit County Prosecutor Sherri Bevan Walsh said the judge and jurors correctly determined that Ford should be sentenced to death.