Arkansas Parole Board Recommends Execution Go Forward

NOVEMBER 15, 2005 - Posted at 3:27 p.m. CST

LITTLE ROCK, AR - The state parole board says the November 28 execution of condemned killer Eric Nance should go forward as planned.

The board rejected arguments from Nance's attorneys that he is mentally retarded and cannot legally be executed.  His lawyers also say DNA tests could exonerate him of attempted rape, an underlying crime that was used to convict Nance of capital murder in the 1993 death of an 18-year-old Malvern woman in 1993.

The panel voted 6-1 to recommend that Governor Huckabee turn down Nance's clemency request.

Huckabee spokesman Alice Stewart says the governor takes all executions seriously and will take the recommendation under advisement.  Meanwhile, U.S. District Judge James Moody is to hear a request from Nance's lawyers Wednesday for a stay of execution.

The 45-year-old Nance was convicted of the murder of Julie Heath, whose throat was cut.

(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)