ROANOKE, Va., Aug. 2 (UPI) — A Virginia death row inmate is closer to execution for a murder for hire after a federal judge rejected a stay.
U.S. District Judge James Jones in Roanoke, Va., Monday denied the stay request of Ivan Teleguz, 32, who was convicted and sentenced to death in Rockingham County Circuit Court in 2006 for killing Stephanie Sipe.
In June 2010, Jones gave Teleguz a stay days before he was scheduled to die, but he found no merit in his petition this time.
Sipe was found with her throat cut in her Harrisonburg apartment in 2001. Prosecutors said Teleguz was hired to kill Sipe by someone who had to pay her child support, the Harrisonburg Daily News-Record reported.
Teleguz’s lawyers say he got an inadequate defense and prosecutors used witnesses who have admitted perjury.
The Virginia Attorney General’s Office says Teleguz can now appeal to the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. If that fails, an execution date will be set.