Supreme Court clears way for Tennessee to execute murderer

(Reuters) – The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday denied a last-ditch petition seeking to halt the execution by Tennessee of a man convicted of the 1985 rape and murder of a 7-year-old girl he was babysitting.

Death row inmate Billy Ray Irick, appears in a booking photo provided by the Tennessee Department of Corrections, August 8, 2018. Tennessee Department of Corrections/Handout via REUTERS

The decision cleared the path for the lethal injection and came just hours before the state was scheduled to put to death Billy Irick, 59, at 7 p.m. CDT (0000 GMT) at the Riverbend Maximum Security…

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