Defense Attorney seeks stay of execution for Rodney Berget - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

Defense Attorney seeks stay of execution for Rodney Berget

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The attorney for Rodney Berget has requested a stay of execution for his client as they work to appeal his death sentence.

KSFY spoke with Berget's attorney Jeff Larson on Wednesday Afternoon. Larson says he filed a notice of appeal to the death sentence with the South Dakota Supreme Court on July 18th, but as of right now has not completed his brief. Larson did not say if any new findings prompted the decision only that he is appealing the court's decision and requested the stay of execution last week while the appeal is pending.

South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley filed the state's opposition to the stay of execution Wednesday Afternoon. According to court documents, Jackley requests the court dismiss the motion because the defense has not offered any factual or legal reason for the court to stay Berget's execution.

Berget pleaded guilty to the murder of Senior Corrections Officer Ron "RJ" Johnson on November 7, 2011 and was sentenced to death by Judge Bradley Zell on February 6, 2012. The sentence was appealed and remanded by the South Dakota Supreme Court. After a re-sentencing in the trial court, Berget was once again sentenced to die by lethal injection. A warrant of execution has been issued for the week of January 12, 2014.


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