Supreme Court refuses to stay execution of Georgia inmate

ATLANTA Tue Jun 17, 2014 10:58pm EDT

Death row inmate Marcus Wellons is seen in an undated handout from the Georgia Department of Corrections. REUTERS/Georgia Department of Corrections/Handout

Death row inmate Marcus Wellons is seen in an undated handout from the Georgia Department of Corrections.

Credit: Reuters/Georgia Department of Corrections/Handout

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ATLANTA (Reuters) - The U.S. Supreme Court denied on Tuesday an 11th-hour request to block the execution of a Georgia inmate who was scheduled to be put to death Tuesday night in what would be the nation's first execution since a botched lethal injection in Oklahoma in April.

Marcus Wellons, 58, condemned for the 1989 rape and strangulation of a 15-year-old girl, also would become the first inmate executed in Georgia since the state Supreme Court upheld a new law in May shielding the identity and methods of compounding pharmacies that formulate lethal injection drugs.

(Reporting by David Beasley in Atlanta; Editing by Eric M. Johnson and Steve Gorman)

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