US Supreme Court denies Oklahoma death row inmate’s appeal

October 19, 2022 GMT
FILE - This undated photo provided by the Oklahoma State Department of Corrections shows Benjamin Robert Cole Sr. The U.S. Supreme Court has denied a last-minute appeal filed by Oklahoma death row inmate Benjamin Cole. The high court's decision on Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2022 paves the way for the 57-year-old to be executed Thursday at the Oklahoma State Penitentiary in McAlester. (Oklahoma State Department of Corrections via AP, File)
FILE - This undated photo provided by the Oklahoma State Department of Corrections shows Benjamin Robert Cole Sr. The U.S. Supreme Court has denied a last-minute appeal filed by Oklahoma death row inmate Benjamin Cole. The high court's decision on Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2022 paves the way for the 57-year-old to be executed Thursday at the Oklahoma State Penitentiary in McAlester. (Oklahoma State Department of Corrections via AP, File)

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday denied a last-minute appeal filed by Oklahoma death row inmate Benjamin Cole, paving the way for him to receive a lethal injection on Thursday.

Cole, 57, was convicted and sentenced to death for killing his 9-month-old daughter Brianna Cole by forcibly bending the infant backward, breaking her spine. Prosecutors allege Cole was angry at the child for crying while he was playing a video game.

Cole’s attorneys have not disputed that he killed the infant, but they say he is severely mentally ill and that has brain damage that worsened while he has been in prison.

A state panel rejected Cole’s bid for clemency earlier this month, and a district court judge in Oklahoma determined that he was competent enough to be executed.

Cole’s execution would be the sixth since Oklahoma resumed carrying out the death penalty in October 2021.

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This story has been corrected to indicate the victim’s last name is Cole, not Taylor.