(TheRedWire.com) – On Wednesday the Supreme Court ruled against blocking the execution of a man on death row.
Donald Dillbeck, who was charged with first-degree murder in 1990, applied to the court for the execution to be blocked, claiming that the sentence needed to be reviewed as it was unconstitutional. Dillbeck also petitioned for a writ of certiorari, however, the Supreme Court denied both of these attempts.
Last month, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) signed Dillbeck’s death warrant after the state court denied his petition for a stay.
Dillbeck was convicted in the 1990s for having murdered a woman in Tallahassee after escaping custody during his life sentence for killing a deputy in 1979. His attorney has argued that Dillbeck should have been granted the exemption because he is suffering from a neurobehavioral disorder associated with Prenatal Alcohol Exposure.
They further called on the Supreme Court to rule on whether according to the Eighth Amendment the jury needed to be unanimous before a death sentence was handed. Dillbeck had been sentenced by a divided jury in an 8-4 decision. At the time of his sentencing, a majority jury was enough for a death penalty sentence in Florida. However, in 2017 there was a change and a unanimous jury is now required following a Supreme Court decision that altered the state’s capital punishment system.
Recently DeSantis also proposed legislation that would require a supermajority for a death sentence to be given.
Dillbeck’s execution by lethal injection is scheduled for Feb. 23 at 6 p.m. in Florida.
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