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Florida Asks Supreme Court to Deny Inmate’s Execution-Delay Request

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In this undated photo made available by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, inmate Timothy Lee Hurst. The Supreme Court ruled Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2016, that Florida's unique system for sentencing people to death is unconstitutional because it gives too much power to judges and not enough to juries to decide capital sentences. The court sided with Hurst, who was convicted of the 1998 murder of his manager in Pensacola, Fla.  (Florida Department of Law Enforcement via AP)
Inmate Timothy Lee Hurst. The Supreme Court ruled Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2016, that Florida’s unique system for sentencing people to death is unconstitutional because it gives too much power to judges and not enough to juries to decide capital sentences. The court sided with Hurst, who was convicted of the 1998 murder of his manager in Pensacola. (Florida Department of Law Enforcement via AP)

GAINESVILLE — Florida has asked the state’s high court to reject a condemned inmate’s request to delay his execution based on the U.S. Supreme Court’s finding that Florida’s procedure for imposing the death penalty is illegal.

In a brief filed Thursday, Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi’s office said the U.S. Supreme Court’s finding should not be applied retroactively to already-settled death penalty cases.

Ruling on the Hurst v. Florida case Tuesday, the nation’s highest court ruled 8-1 that Florida’s procedure is flawed because it allows judges, not juries, to decide death sentences.

Attorneys for convicted killer Michael Lambrix cited the ruling in their request for a new sentencing hearing for him.

Lambrix is scheduled to be executed by lethal injection on Feb. 11.

It wasn’t clear when the court would rule.

About Oscar Bergeron-Oakes

Oscar is a reporter who can be contacted by calling 352-392-6397 or emailing news@wuft.org.

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