Missouri Executes Brian Dorsey

SCOTUS rejected 2 appeals
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 9, 2024 5:19 PM CDT
Updated Apr 9, 2024 6:47 PM CDT
With Hours Left, SCOTUS Rejects Inmate's Appeals
A photo released by the federal public defender shows inmate Brian Dorsey at the Potosi Correctional Center.   (Jeremy Weis, Federal Public Defender via AP)

This story has been updated with news of Dorsey's execution. Missouri inmate Brian Dorsey was executed Tuesday evening after the US Supreme Court declined to intervene. The court turned down two appeals by Dorsey's lawyers, one arguing that their client did not have proper legal representation by his public defenders and the other arguing that he had been ''fully rehabilitated'' during his time in prison, USA Today reports. Dorsey, 52, was executed by lethal injection, reports CBS News. He is the first inmate to be executed in Missouri this year. Kirk Henderson, one of his attorneys, said Dorsey's execution was a "pointless cruelty."

In a final written statement, Dorsey said, "Words cannot hold the just weight of my guilt and shame," per the AP. Missouri Gov. Mike Parson had rejected Dorsey's plea for clemency the day before. Dorsey has expressed remorse for killing his cousin and her husband in 2006 and has received support from correctional officers who have asked that his life be spared, per CNN. The Supreme Court issued no comment along with its decisions. Members of Dorsey's family presented Parson with another 2,000 signatures on a petition seeking clemency on Tuesday afternoon, per KRCG.

Demonstrations in support of clemency were held Tuesday in the Missouri cities of Columbia, St. Louis, Jefferson City, and Kansas City, as well as at the Bonne Terre Correctional Center. "This evening, Brian will be set free. His punishment will end," said Gail Thompson, cousin to both Dorsey and victim Sarah Bonnie. "For all of us who are only guilty of loving him, ours will begin. This is not the life sentence that we sought." (More death row stories.)

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