ATMORE, Ala. (WEHT/AP)- The U.S. Supreme Court has lifted the stay on convicted cop killer Nathaniel Woods. The execution will move forward.
The U.S. Supreme Court halted the planned execution of an Alabama inmate Nathaniel Woods,47, Thursday just minutes before he was to be put to death, the court issued a temporary stay.
Our sister station WKRG reports that the delay has been lifted and he was executed.
The supreme court ordered Woods’ execution stayed “pending further order of the undersigned or of the court.”
Woods and Kerry Spencer were convicted of capital murder and sentenced to death in the slayings of the three Birmingham officers. Carlos Owen, Harley A. Chisolm III and Charles R. Bennett died while trying to serve a misdemeanor domestic assault warrant on Woods.
Supporters argued that Spencer said he was the sole person responsible for the shootings and that Woods received an unfair trial in 2005.
Prosecutors said Spencer was the triggerman in the slaying, opening fire on the officers with a high-powered rifle inside the apartment, but Woods was convicted as an accomplice.
“’He is actually innocent,” Woods’ sister, Pamela Woods, told reporters outside the prison. “Kerry Spencer the actual shooter has stated many times that he did it on his own with no help for anyone.” Spencer told The Appeal in an article about the case that Woods was “100% innocent.”
State lawyers wrote in court filings that Woods said he was surrendering to officers and soon after Spencer opened fire with a high-powered rifle.
Woods’ attorneys argue woods is innocent and point out the other defendant in the case confessed to being the lone gunman.
Prosecutors say the officers were in the process of arresting woods when he shot them.
Woods and co-defendant Kerry Spencer were sentenced to death in the slayings of the three Birmingham officers
Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall wanted the execution to move forward. Marshall asked Ivey to let the execution proceed. “Although Woods was not the shooter, he was hardly an innocent bystander,” Marshall wrote in a letter to Ivey.
No execution date has been set for Spencer, who was convicted before Woods and is on death row at Holman prison.
Evidence showed Spencer shot the men. Prosecutors say Woods helped set up an ambush.
No execution date has been set for Spencer.
(This story was originally published on March 5, 2020)