U.S. Supreme Court delays decision on Tharpe execution

It'll be at least another week before convicted murderer Keith Tharpe knows whether his execution remains on hold or moves forward.

Brian Kammer, the Georgia Resources Center attorney representing Tharpe, said Tuesday that the U.S. Supreme Court postponed a hearing on Tharpe's stay until next week.

Kammer said it's also possible the decision could be delayed again next week.

Last week, the high court stayed Tharpe's execution pending a review of a lower federal court's decision on whether a member of the jury that sentenced Tharpe to death was biased against African Americans.

The stay remains effective until the Supreme Court issues its decision.

A Jones County jury sentenced Tharpe to death after convicting him of murdering his sister-in-law, Jacquelyn Freeman, in 1990. 

Tharpe allegedly shot Freeman three times, then kidnapped his estranged wife and later raped her.

He was scheduled to die at 7 p.m. October 3. But the Supreme Court stayed the execution about 10:45 p.m. 

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