Louisiana Man Is Executed for Killing Trooper
A two-time killer who shot a Louisiana state trooper to death was executed early today despite international outcries that he was nearly mentally retarded and a mere teen-ager at the time of the crime.
Dalton Prejean, who had won 10 previous delays of scheduled executions, was pronounced dead at 12:21 a.m.
The U.S. Supreme Court voted, 7 to 2, Thursday night to deny a stay for Prejean.
Prejean’s execution was the nation’s third in 24 hours. Texas and Missouri each executed killers early Thursday. His death was the 128th in the nation and the 19th in Louisiana, since capital punishment resumed in 1977.
Gov. Buddy Roemer had said he would not stop the execution. Twice in the last year he rejected his hand-picked Pardon Board’s recommendations that he commute the sentence to life in prison.
Defense lawyers said Prejean, 30, had an IQ of 71, barely above retardation. Doctors said he suffered brain damage as a child, apparently at the hands of an abusive aunt who raised him.