Nevada high court halts execution

Oct. 15, 2007 at 11:35 PM

LAS VEGAS, Oct. 15 (UPI) -- The clock counting down the time remaining in convicted killer William Castillo's life was stopped Monday when the Nevada Supreme Court blocked his execution.

Castillo, 35, was to have received a lethal injection for beating an 86-year-old retired school teacher to death in Las Vegas in 1995. However, his 8:30 p.m. date with his executioners was postponed when the state's high court issued a stay with less than two hours to go, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.

The court acted after two groups filed separate petitions seeking to prevent any executions in Nevada. The Nevada Coalition Against the Death Penalty sought to block Castillo's execution by intervening in the case of another death row inmate, Pedro Rodriguez, who unlike Castillo doesn't want a lethal injection, the newspaper said.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada sought to block Castillo's execution pending the outcome of a U.S. Supreme Court review of constitutionality of the lethal injection method.

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