Man convicted of ordering boss' killing set for execution

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Richard Glossip's Attorneys Make Another Plea For Stay Of Execution

McALESTER, Okla. (AP) -- The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday refused to stop the execution of an Oklahoma inmate who claims that new evidence uncovered by his lawyers can prove his innocence.

State prison officials temporarily delayed Richard Glossip's execution while waiting for justices to weigh in. Without comment, the Supreme Court refused to intervene, though it noted that Justice Stephen Breyer would have given Glossip more time to prove his case.

Glossip was convicted of ordering the 1997 killing of Barry Van Treese, who owned the Oklahoma City motel that Glossip managed.

SEE MORE: Is Oklahoma about to execute an innocent man?

Glossip has long claimed he was framed by hotel handyman Justin Sneed, who admitted to fatally beating Van Treese with a baseball bat, but said he did so only after Glossip promised him $10,000. Sneed - who is serving a life sentence - was the state's key witness against Glossip in two separate trials.

Glossip was originally scheduled for execution on Sept. 16. But just hours earlier, the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals granted a rare two-week reprieve to review his claims of new evidence, including another inmate's assertion that he overheard Sneed admit to framing Glossip.

Click through for more images of Glossip and the fight to stop his execution:/p>

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Oklahoma inmate Richard Glossip set to die for 1997 killing
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Man convicted of ordering boss' killing set for execution
FILE - This undated file photo provided by the Oklahoma Department of Corrections shows death row inmate Richard Glossip. Glossip is scheduled to be executed Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2015. (AP Photo/Oklahoma Department of Corrections, File)
WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 29: Anti-death penalty activists, including members of MoveOn.org and other advocay groups rally outside the U.S. Supreme Court in a final attempt to prevent the execution of Oklahoma inmate Richard Glossip on September 29, 2015 in Washington, DC. Legal experts, death penalty opponents, and hundreds of thousands of ordinary Americans have fought tirelessly to prevent the execution of Glossip. (Photo by Larry French/Getty Images for MoveOn.org)
Sister Helen Prejean, famous for the book "Dead Man Walking" about her work with death row inmates, speaks at Belmont University Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2015, in Nashville, Tenn. Prejean is the spiritual adviser for Richard Glossip, the Oklahoma inmate who just got a last minute reprieve from execution. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
Kathleen Lord, center, and Don Knight, right, two of Richard Glossip's defense attorneys, look on as Sister Helen Prejean, left, addresses the media outside the Oklahoma State Penitentiary in McAlester Okla., Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2015, after a stay was issued for Glossip. Glossip was twice convicted of ordering the killing of Barry Van Treese, who owned the Oklahoma City motel where he worked. His co-worker, Justin Sneed, was convicted of fatally beating Van Treese and was a key prosecution witness in Glossip's trials. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)
Sister Helen Prejean, a death penalty opponent, speaks during a news conference in Oklahoma City, Monday, Sept. 14, 2015. Looking on at left is Don Knight, one of the defense attorneys for Richard Glossip. Glossip is scheduled to be executed on Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2015, and his defense team is asking for a stay while they search for evidence in the case. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)
From left, Janie Coverdale, who lost two grandchildren in the Oklahoma City bombing, Nancy Norvell and Kathy Wokaty, a sister of death row inmate Richard Glossip, listen during a news conference in Oklahoma City, Monday, Sept. 14, 2015. Glossip is scheduled to be executed on Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2015, and his defense team is asking for a stay while they search for evidence in the case. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)
Connie Johnson, former Oklahoma state Senator, speaks to a rally to stop the execution of Richard Glossip, in Oklahoma City, Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2015. Glossip is scheduled to be executed Wednesday, Sept. 16. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)
Ericka Glossip-Hodge, left, daughter of Richard Glossip, and Billie Jo Ogden Boyiddle, right, Richard Glossip's sister, listen during a rally to stop the execution of Richard Glossip, in Oklahoma City, Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2015. Glossip is scheduled to be executed Wednesday, Sept. 16. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)
Ericka Glossip-Hodge, left, the daughter of death row inmate Richard Glossip, and Don Knight, right, one of his attorneys, wait next to a portrait of Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin to deliver information to a representative of the governor concerning Glossips's case, in Oklahoma City, Monday, Sept. 14, 2015. Glossip is scheduled to be executed on Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2015, and his defense team is asking for a stay while they search for evidence in the case. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)
Nancy Vollertsen holds a photo of her brother, Greg Wilhoit, who spent five years on Oklahoma's death row before being exonerated, during a rally to stop the execution of Richard Glossip in Oklahoma City, Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2015. Glossip is scheduled to be executed Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2015. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki
Billie Jo Ogden Boyiddle, left, a niece of death row inmate Richard Glossip, is pictured following a news conference by his attorneys in Oklahoma City, Monday, Sept. 14, 2015. Pictured at center is Ericka Glossip-Hodge, his daughter. Glossip is scheduled to be executed on Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2015, and his defense team is asking for a stay while they search for evidence in the case. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)
Kim Vanetta, of New York, a friend of Richard Glossip, holds a box of correspondence Glossip has received, during a protest at the state Capitol in Oklahoma City, Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2015. Glossip is scheduled to be executed Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2015. At rear is Glossip's niece, Billie Jo Ogden Boyiddle. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)
Ericka Glossip-Hodge signs the guest book in the Governor's office in Oklahoma City, Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2015. Her father, Richard Glossip, is scheduled to be executed Wednesday, Sept. 16. Glossip's family and supporters rallied at the state Capitol, asking for a 60-day stay. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)
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But in a 3-2 decision Monday, the same court denied Glossip's request for an evidentiary hearing and emergency stay of execution, paving the way for his execution to proceed. The court majority wrote that the new evidence simply expands on theories raised in his original appeals.

On Tuesday, Glossip's attorneys made a last-ditch request to the U.S. Supreme Court.

"Recently discovered evidence demonstrates substantial doubt about Sneed's credibility," his attorneys wrote in a petition to the court.

Attorney General Scott Pruitt urged the high court to not stop the execution, arguing that another delay for Glossip would amount to a "travesty of justice."

Gov. Mary Fallin has repeatedly denied Glossip's request for a 60-day stay of execution. In a statement Tuesday, the Republican said she still had no plans to stop the punishment.

"The state of Oklahoma has gone to extraordinary lengths to guarantee that Richard Glossip is treated fairly and that the claims made by him and his attorneys are taken seriously," Fallin said. "He has now had multiple trials, seventeen years of appeals, and three stays of his execution. Over and over again, courts have rejected his arguments and the information he has presented to support them."

A representative for Pope Francis asked Fallin to commute Glossip's death sentence, saying a commutation "would give clearer witness to the value and dignity of every person's life." The letter from Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano is dated Sept. 19, but was released Wednesday by the governor's office.

A spokesman for Fallin said the governor doesn't have the authority to grant a commutation.

Glossip also is the lead plaintiff in a separate case challenging the state's three-drug execution protocol. His attorneys argue that the sedative midazolam wouldn't adequately render an inmate unconscious before the second and third drugs were administered. They said that presented a substantial risk of violating the Eighth Amendment's prohibition on cruel and unusual punishment.

However, the U.S. Supreme Court voted 5-4 in June that the sedative's use was constitutional.

Oklahoma first used midazolam last year in the execution of Clayton Lockett, who writhed on the gurney, moaned and clenched his teeth for several minutes before prison officials tried to halt the process. He died 43 minutes after the sedative was first injected.

The state then increased by five times the amount of midazolam it uses and executed Charles Warner in January. He complained of a burning sensation but showed no other obvious signs of physical distress.

Oklahoma has two more executions planned in upcoming weeks. Benjamin Cole is set to be executed on Oct. 7 for the 2002 killing of his 9-month-old daughter, and John Grant is scheduled to die on Oct. 28 for the 1998 stabbing death of a prison worker at the Dick Connor Correctional Center in Hominy.

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