Mass murderer R. Gene Simmons is back on death row Thursday after a fellow inmate persuaded the U.S. Supreme Court to block Simmons' execution for the slayings of 14 family members.
Simmons' execution by lethal injection had been set for Thursday, five weeks after he was convicted of the 1987 Christmastime killings. The 48-year-old Simmons says he wants to die and has refused to appeal his conviction.Jonas Whitmore, who is appealing his 1987 death penalty and conviction, filed the petition, contending that Simmons' execution - which would have been the first in Arkansas in a quarter-century - could have repercussions for other death row inmates.
The state Supreme Court ruled on Friday that Simmons is competent to waive his appeal for the February conviction. The same court Monday rejected Whitmore's petition, claiming he lacked standing.
The order to stop the execution was issued Wednesday.