Pennsylvania inmate's execution stayed

Oct. 4, 2012 at 1:10 AM
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HARRISBURG, Pa., Oct. 4 (UPI) -- The Pennsylvania Supreme Court Wednesday upheld the stay of a death row inmate's execution just hours before he was to die by lethal injection.

The state's highest court issued a one-sentence order about 3:45 p.m. denying prosecutors' request that the state be allowed to go ahead with the execution of Philadelphia killer Terrance Williams.

The Supreme Court ordered court personnel to draft a schedule for filing legal briefs and, perhaps, an oral argument, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

The decision let stand last Friday's ruling by a Common Pleas Court judge that the prosecutor in Williams' 1986 trial made his death sentence more likely by withholding information that Williams was sexually molested by his victim.

Williams, now 46, was convicted in the June 11, 1984, beating death of Amos Norwood, 56, of Germantown. Williams was an 18-year-old Cheyney University freshman and former high school football star at the time Norwood was slain.

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