Court sets execution date for Tenn. woman

April 19, 2010 at 9:07 PM
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NASHVILLE, April 19 (UPI) -- A September date has been set for the execution of Gaile Owens, one of two women on Tennessee's death row, the state Supreme Court said in an order Monday.

If the sentence is carried out Sept. 28 as scheduled, Owens would be the first woman executed in Tennessee since 1820, The (Nashville) Tennessean reported Monday.

Owens, 57, was convicted in 1986 for hiring Sidney Porterfield to kill her husband Ronald, who was beaten to death the year before. Her attorneys had sought to have her sentenced commuted to life in prison, the newspaper said.

Porterfield also is on death row.

The other woman sentenced to death in Tennessee is Christa Pike, convicted of killing fellow Job Corps worker Colleen Slemmer in 1995. No date has been set for her execution.

There have been seven executions in Tennessee since 2000 -- including Cecil C. Johnson Jr. last week for the 1980 murders of three people during a robbery at a Nashville market.

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