Supreme Court Denies Appeal From Bittaker

Condemned murderer Lawrence Sigmond Bittaker lost another round in his attempt to avoid execution in California’s gas chamber Monday when the U.S. Supreme Court denied his appeal on a conviction in the 1979 murders of five teen-age girls in Los Angeles County.

Bittaker, 50, was scheduled to die last Dec. 29, but his execution was delayed by an appeal to the high court. Now the former Burbank machinist can file appeals in federal court that could further postpone his date with death.

In denying his appeal last year, the California Supreme Court cited the “astonishing cruelty” of Bittaker’s crimes.

The man who prosecuted Broussard, Stephen Kay, said Monday that he was “pleased” with the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision. “Bittaker is going to get his justice some day soon,” Kay added.