RICHMOND, Va. — Willie Lloyd Turner's scheduled execution for murder and robbery was called off Thursday night when Chief Justice Warren E. Burger refused to dissolve a stay, just hours before Turner was to die in the electric chair. No new date for the execution was set.
The U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals had stayed the execution on Monday, because Turner has an appeal pending before the Supreme Court. Burger informed the state that he would not lift the lower court's order, said David Hathcock, a spokesman for the Virginia attorney general.
The Supreme Court has refused twice to review Turner's case but has not acted on his last appeal.