Twice-Spared Ohio Killer Is Executed

From Associated Press

A convicted killer whose life was twice spared by a court just minutes before he was to be put to death was executed Thursday for the 1983 murder of a delicatessen owner.

Jay D. Scott, 48, died by injection just after 9 p.m. at the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility at Lucasville.

Scott was calm as prison employees walked him into the death chamber and strapped him onto a gurney.

He nodded toward family members in an adjacent witness room several times. His family sat quietly and nodded back at Scott. In a final statement, Scott told his brothers to give his family and friends his love.

It was his third execution date in two months. Courts ordered delays on April 17 and May 15 over questions about his competence. By the time the scheduled May 15 execution was delayed, the execution team had already placed into Scott's arms the shunts that would carry the drugs to kill him.

Scott's lawyer had pleaded with the courts to spare his life a third time because he is schizophrenic, arguing that killing a mentally ill person is cruel and unusual.

The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday refused Scott's appeals. His lawyers had also argued that the two canceled executions were cruel and unusual.

Only Gov. Robert A. Taft could have stopped Scott's execution Thursday. Scott's lawyer had pleaded with the governor for clemency, but Taft had said Wednesday he would not grant it because Scott's lawyers had presented no new evidence since he rejected similar requests in April and May.

Scott was convicted of killing Cleveland delicatessen owner Vinney Prince, 70, who was shot in the chest after she prepared food for Scott and an accomplice.

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