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Georgia man who killed girl has execution temporarily stayed

Virgil Delano Presnell Jr. is set to be executed on May 17 at Georgia's state prison in Jackson.
Virgil Delano Presnell Jr. is set to be executed on May 17 at Georgia's state prison in Jackson.(Georgia Department of Corrections)
Published: May. 16, 2022 at 11:02 PM EDT
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ATLANTA (AP) — A judge has temporarily delayed the execution of a Georgia man who was scheduled to die Tuesday for killing an 8-year-old girl 46 years ago.

Virgil Delano Presnell Jr. killed the girl and raped her 10-year-old friend after abducting them as they walked home from school just outside Atlanta, on May 4, 1976. He was scheduled to die by injection at the state prison in Jackson at 7 p.m. Tuesday.

Georgia’s parole board on Monday declined to halt the execution, however, lawyers for the Federal Defender Program filed a lawsuit last week and an emergency motion Monday in Fulton County Superior Court. They said the setting of his execution date violates a written agreement with the office of the state attorney general that temporarily put executions on hold during the coronavirus pandemic.

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