A federal appeals court in New Orleans halted the execution of Texas killer Scott Panetti, whose case has sparked a global debate over whether people with severe mental illnesses should be put to death for their crimes, reported the USA Today.
Panetti's lawyers say he is too delusional to be executed. The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals granted a reprieve less than eight hours before Panetti was scheduled to receive a lethal injection. The court said it needed more time to "allow us to fully consider the late-arriving and complex legal questions at issue in this matter."
The court said oral arguments would be scheduled in the case. The Texas Attorney General's Office said it won't fight the ruling and that the execution would not happen Wednesday. Panetti's legal team issued a statement expressing gratitude for the court's decision.
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