The Latest: Texas executes man for ex-girlfriend's killing

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Posted: Jan 30, 2018 10:03 PM
The Latest: Texas executes man for ex-girlfriend's killing

HUNTSVILLE, Texas (AP) — The Latest on the scheduled execution of Texas inmate William Rayford (all times local):

8:58 p.m.

A 64-year-old Dallas man on death row for the 1999 slaying of his ex-girlfriend while he was out on parole for killing his estranged wife has been executed in Texas.

William Rayford became the nation's second inmate put to death this year, both in Texas.

Rayford received lethal injection Tuesday night for beating, stabbing and strangling 44-year-old Carol Lynn Thomas Hall. Her body was found inside a drainage pipe behind her South Dallas home. Hall's 11-year-old son also was stabbed in the attack but survived. He testified against Rayford.

The punishment was carried out after the U.S. Supreme Court refused last-day appeals.

Rayford was convicted in 1986 of fatally stabbing his estranged wife. He received 23 years in prison for murder but was paroled after eight years.

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8:05 p.m.

The U.S. Supreme Court has refused to halt the execution of a 64-year-old Dallas man for the 1999 slaying of his ex-girlfriend while he already was on parole for killing his estranged wife.

Texas prison officials had delayed William Rayford's punishment scheduled for Tuesday evening until the high court resolved his appeals.

Attorneys argued his trial lawyer improperly introduced a question about race while questioning a prison expert about violence in prisons and could have influenced jurors to unfairly use race as a factor in deciding his death sentence. They also contended a federal court improperly denied money for an expert to look into whether the charges against Rayford were appropriate for a death penalty case.

Rayford faces lethal injection for beating, stabbing and strangling 44-year-old Carol Lynn Thomas Hall in 1999. He was convicted in 1986 of fatally stabbing his estranged wife, received 23 years in prison for murder but was paroled after eight years.

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4:50 p.m.

A federal appeals court has refused to stop the scheduled execution of Texas prisoner William Rayford, who is set to receive lethal injection for killing his ex-girlfriend in Dallas in 1999.

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected an appeal that argued a federal judge improperly denied Rayford's lawyers money to hire a forensic medical examiner to determine whether the woman was dead before her body was moved to a drainage ditch. They contend that's a key distinction in a capital murder case.

The decision comes less than two hours before Rayford could be taken to the Texas death chamber Tuesday evening.

His lawyers have taken the appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, where another appeal for Rayford already is pending.

The execution is set for 6 p.m. CST. Texas prison officials won't proceed until appeals are resolved. The execution warrant remains in effect until midnight.

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9:40 a.m.

A federal judge says she doesn't have the authority to rule on an appeal that could halt a Texas execution, and she's asking an appeals court to step in.

His attorneys filed an appeal raising several issues, including that

In a ruling late Monday, U.S. District Judge Jane Boyle sent the case to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. But she said that if the appeals court sends the case back to her, she'll deny Rayford's request.

Another appeal is pending before the U.S. Supreme Court.

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11:49 p.m.

A Texas death row inmate is asking the federal courts to keep him from being executed for the 1999 slaying of his ex-girlfriend while he already was on parole for killing his estranged wife.

William Rayford would be the nation's second inmate executed this year, both in Texas.

The 64-year-old Rayford is facing lethal injection Tuesday evening for beating, stabbing and strangling 44-year-old Carol Lynn Thomas Hall. Her body was found about 300 feet (91 meters) inside a drainage pipe behind her home in South Dallas' Oak Cliff area. Hall's 11-year-old son also was stabbed in the attack but survived to testify against Rayford.

Rayford was convicted of murder in 1986 for fatally stabbing his estranged wife and received 23 years in prison. He was paroled after eight years.