Tenn. Governor Denies Clemency For Death Row Inmate Stephen West; He Will Be Executed Thursday

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This booking photo released by the Tennessee Department of Corrections shows Stephen West. The Tennessee death row inmate is asking Gov. Bill Lee to spare his life, maintaining that he didn’t actually kill a mother or her daughter three decades ago. West’s clemency application says his co-defendant, then-17-year-old Ronnie Martin, stabbed both people to death. His execution is slated for Aug. 15. Martin is serving a life sentence and is eligible for parole in 2030. (Tennessee Department of Corrections via AP)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Today, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee released the following statement regarding death row inmate Stephen West:

“After thorough consideration of Stephen West’s request for clemency and a review of the case, the State of Tennessee’s sentence will stand, and I will not be intervening.”

In accordance with protocol, inmate West was moved to death watch this morning shortly after midnight. Death watch is the three-day period before an execution when strict guidelines are implemented to maintain the security and control of the offender and to maintain safe and orderly operations of the prison. During this period, the offender is placed in a cell adjacent to the execution chamber where he or she is under 24-hour observation by a team of correctional officers.

West was convicted of the 1986 kidnapping and stabbing deaths of 51-year-old Wanda Romines and her 15-year-old daughter, Sheila Romines, and of raping the teen.

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