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Tenn. inmate moved to execution 'death watch,' Gov. Lee declines clemency request

Tenn. Death Row inmate Oscar Franklin Smith
Tenn. Death Row inmate Oscar Franklin Smith

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee’s governor says he won't intervene in the state's plans to execute an inmate convicted of killing his estranged wife and her sons decades ago.

Attorneys for 72-year-old Oscar Smith had asked Republican Gov. Bill Lee for clemency ahead of Thursday's scheduled lethal injection. The lawyers cited problems with the jury in Smith's 1990 trial.

The governor issued a statement Tuesday saying he declined to step in after thoroughly considered Smith's request.

Smith was convicted of fatally stabbing and shooting Judith Smith and her two teenage sons at their Nashville home in 1989. A jury subsequently sentenced him to death.

Smith has maintained he's innocent.

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