November 28, 2014
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - A federal judge has decided to hear a petition for a stay of execution from a death row inmate set to die by firing squad this week.
U.S. District Court Chief Judge Tena Campbell set a hearing for 7 p.m. Tuesday.
Ronnie Lee Gardner wants his Friday execution stayed for a civil rights lawsuit he filed last week that alleges a commutation hearing held by the Utah Board and Pardons and Parole was tainted.
The parole board denied the 49-year-old's bid for clemency Monday.
Gardner was convicted of capital murder and sentenced to death in 1985 for the fatal courthouse shooting of attorney Michael Burdell during an escape attempt.
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