Step-relative's attempt to delay Moeller's execution - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

Step-relative's attempt to delay Moeller's execution

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There are new developments in the case of death row inmate Donald Moeller.

A Federal Judge heard the appeal, Monday morning, after step-relatives of Moeller asked the court to delay the execution.

Moeller, 60, was convicted back in 1990 for the kidnapping, rape and murder of Becky O'Connell, 9. Moeller was in court. He is scheduled to die by lethal injection in Sioux Falls as early as Sunday.

Step-relatives to Moeller wanted the Federal Judge to delay the execution process because they feel Moeller is not psychologically qualified to dismiss any appeals. Attorney General Marty Jackley says the request is unnecessary, not to mention, the woman behind the appeal lacks the power to make the request.

The woman involved is Donna Nichols who married Moeller's step-father. Nichols' attorney, who joined the hearing via teleconference, asked the judge to issue a delay and appoint Nichols as someone with power in the court process.

Moeller and his attorney said, after 22 years, they don't want this execution to be delayed any longer. Moeller admitted, in court, that he does not have any relationship with Nichols and said he didn't want family involved. Especially, he says, if they are not related by blood.

After the hearing, Jackley said the state determined Moeller is competent because he understands the lethal injection process and has taken full responsibility for his actions.

"We've exhausted the necessary due-process that the state's demonstrated through the Eric Robert case, that we can proceed with a constitutionally sound and humane execution," SD Attorney General Marty Jackley said.

The judge said he will take this under advisement and issue a decision as soon as possible. Both Jack

Jackley, Moeller and Moeller's attorney are hopeful and confident this won't affect the process.

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