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California holds first execution in three years

[JURIST] California prison officials executed three-time murderer Donald Beardslee Wednesday morning, the first execution in California in three years. Following a Board of Prison Terms recommendation [PDF], California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger [official profile] denied clemency to Beardslee, saying:

The state and federal courts have affirmed his conviction and death sentence, and nothing in his petition or the record of his case convinces me that he did not understand the gravity of his actions or that these heinous murders were wrong. I do not believe the evidence presented warrants the exercise of clemency in this case.
Read Schwarzenegger's clemency decision [PDF; accompanying press release]. Beardslee's attorney's had argued that he was suffering from mental illness when he killed two young women while on parole for the murder of another woman. Beardslee's request for a stay of execution was also rejected by the US Supreme Court Tuesday. Reuters has more.

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