The U.S. Supreme Court has stopped the execution of an Alabama inmate convicted in a 1982 murder-for-hire.
Five justices voted to grant the stay late Thursday night for inmate Tommy Arthur as the high court considers whether to review Arthur’s appeals. The decision was handed down about an hour before Arthur’s death warrant expired.
Seventy-four-year-old Arthur had been scheduled to be executed Thursday evening by lethal injection at the Holman Correctional Facility in Atmore.
He was convicted of killing Troy Wicker. Police on Feb. 1, 1982, found Wicker shot to death in bed in his Muscle Shoals home. Wicker’s wife initially said she had been raped and an intruder killed her husband. She later testified that she had sex with Arthur and promised him $10,000 to kill her husband.
The Supreme Court said the stay will expire if it declines to take up Arthur’s case.