The U.S. Supreme Court on Friday refused to block the death sentence imposed on an Idaho slayer, Donald Kenneth Fetterly.
But Fetterly's attorney, Van Bishop of Nampa, announced that he is preparing a U.S. District Court appeal and will file it with the court in Boise next week.The Idaho Supreme Court was advised Friday that the Supreme Court rejected Fetterly's appeal of an Idaho refusal to block the execution.
Bishop said the U.S. Supreme Court did not immediately rule on a second petition, asking review of the Idaho proceedings, which it says are improper, because an accomplice, convicted of the same slaying, did not receive the death sentence.
Bishop plans to file an appeal next week, partially based on an appeals court ruling in an Arizona case. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals held in the Arizona case that a jury, not a judge, must decide whether the death penalty shall be imposed in a first-degree murder case.
Idaho's law is similar to the Arizona statute. Bishop said he will recommend that Fetterly and other Idaho death penalty cases be on hold until the Arizona ruling is settled.
Meanwhile, Friday's action leaves 3rd District Judge Gerald Weston free to pronounce another execution date for Fetterly. But Bishop said he will ask for a stay of execution.
Fetterly, 32, was convicted and sentenced to death for the Sept. 7, 1983, robbery-murder of Sterling Grammer, whose body, bound with duct tape, was found in the Snake River two days after the slaying. An accomplice, Karla Windsor, is serving a sentence of life imprisonment.