Death Penalty

SCOTUS Clears Way for Texas Execution Today

Defense on basis of man's low IQ rejected.

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The U.S. Supreme Court has cleared the way for the Tuesday evening execution of a Texas death row inmate whose lawyers say should be ineligible for the death penalty because of his low IQ.

Marvin Wilson, 54, was sentenced to death for killing a police informant two decades ago. The high court denied his request for a stay of execution less than two hours before his scheduled 6 p.m. lethal injection.

In their appeal to the high court, his attorneys pointed to a psychological test conducted in 2004 that pegged his IQ at 61, below the generally accepted minimum competency standard of 70. But lower courts agreed with state attorneys who questioned the test's validity.