The US Supreme Court has cleared the way for the Department of Justice to carry out the first execution of a female death row in nearly seven decades.
The verdicts, announced shortly after midnight on Wednesday, allow the Federal Bureau of Prisons to continue with the execution of Lisa Montgomery.
The court overturned an injunction imposed by the Eighth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which had suspended Montgomery’s execution. It came hours after the Supreme Court also overturned a separate injunction from the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia.
Montgomery is scheduled to be killed in the federal prison complex in Terre Haute, Indiana.
Her lawyers have argued that she is not mentally competent and should not be executed. They say she suffered from years of physical and emotional abuse and is seriously mentally ill.
Montgomery was convicted of killing 23-year-old Bobbie Jo Stinnett in northwestern Missouri in the town of Skidmore in December 2004. She used a rope to strangle Stinnett, who was eight months pregnant, and then cut the girl from the womb with a kitchen knife. said the authorities.
Montgomery took the child with him and tried to transfer the girl as his own, prosecutors said.