Mississippi death sentence overturned; evaluation ordered

AP News
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Posted: Sep 24, 2015 5:43 PM

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — The Mississippi Supreme Court has overturned the death penalty of a man who confessed to fatally shooting a pawn shop owner, saying God led him to the store.

Justices on Thursday threw out 30-year-old Erik Wayne Hollie's guilty pleas in the pawn shop shooting and for robbing a gas-station attendant at knifepoint. They ordered a lower court to hold a mental evaluation.

Court records show that in 2009, Hollie turned himself in to authorities and confessed to both crimes. A judge accepted Hollie's guilty pleas before a mental evaluation was conducted.

Records show Hollie offered no defense during sentencing in 2010, but asked jurors to sentence him to death so God could deal with him.