It's unclear when or if Missouri death row inmate Herbert Smulls will be executed.
The U.S. Supreme Court has granted him a stay of execution. Justice Samuel Alito signed the order and it was sent out Tuesday night, just hours before Smulls midnight execution date.
The 56 year old was convicted of killing a St. Louis County jeweler and badly injuring his wife during a 1991 robbery. His juvenile accomplice, now 37, is serving a life sentence.
Smulls' lawyer says the stay is temporary while the high court reviews the case. She had made last-minute pleas to spare Smulls' life, focusing on Smulls "due process" rights, since he still has appeals pending that challenge Missouri's execution method. Attorney Cheryl Pilate is arguing that Missouri's refusal to disclose the name of the compounding pharmacy that makes the pentobarbitol used in executions makes it impossible for Smulls' advocates to know whether it could cause pain and suffering.
Earlier on Tuesday, Pilate revealed the name of the company she believes is making the drug. She told The Associated Press that her research indicates the drug is made by The Apothecary Shoppe, based in Tulsa, Okla. She says an Oklahoma City-based lab tested the drug.
Missouri's execution of the "Good Samaritan Killer" remains on hold.
Allen Nicklasson had been scheduled to die by lethal injection at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday for killing businessman Richard Drummond in 1994. Drummond was shot to death after stopping to help when a car carrying Nicklasson and two others stalled along I-70 in central Missouri.
Monday night, a three-judge panel of the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals granted Nicklasson a stay of execution. Nicklasson is arguing that he didn't receive adequate legal representation at his trial.
Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster appealed that stay to the U.S. Supreme Court Tuesday evening. Koster says the high court told his office that no ruling would be issued before 8:00 a.m. on Wednesday.
If the court rules against Nicklasson, he could be executed at any time on Wednesday.
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - A panel of federal judges has stayed a Missouri man's execution a little more than a day before he was set to die.
Allen Nicklasson had been scheduled to be put to death at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday for killing businessman Richard Drummond in 1994.
But late Monday a three-judge panel of the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals voted 2-1 to stay the execution on Nicklasson's claims of ineffective counsel.
A stay such as this in a death row case is not unusual and does not mean the execution ultimately will be scuttled.
The state is expected to appeal the decision to the full appeals court.
ST. LOUIS (AP) - An attorney for condemned killer Allen Nicklasson is asking the Missouri Supreme Court for a stay of execution, citing concerns about Missouri's planned use of the anesthetic propofol for the first time as a lethal injection drug.
Attorney Jennifer Herndon filed the motion on Wednesday. It wasn't clear when the court would issue a ruling.
The Missouri Department of Corrections has expressed confidence in propofol as an execution drug, but Herndon raised concerns that it could cause Nicklasson to suffer.
Nicklasson was convicted of the 1994 killing of Excelsior Springs businessman Richard Drummond, who stopped to help when a car used by Nicklasson and two others broke down on Interstate 70. Another man in the car, Dennis Skillicorn, was executed in 2009.