Inmate's supporters seek to block Miss. execution

By Holbrook Mohr/The Associated Pres

JACKSON — Thousands of people have signed an online petition in support of Larry Matthew Puckett, who’s scheduled for execution by lethal injection on Tuesday at 6 p.m.

Puckett, a one-time Eagle Scout, was convicted of sexually assaulting and killing his former boss’ wife when he was 18. Rhonda Hatten Griffis, a 28-year-old mother of two, was found dead in her Forrest County home in October 1995.

Puckett’s lawyers petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court last week to block the execution. They say prosecutors kept blacks off the jury and Puckett’s former lawyers never properly challenged his conviction on those grounds.

Puckett is white. The jury was all white.

As of Monday, there were nearly 4,500 electronic signatures on a petition called “Save Matt Puckett-Stop an Innocent Man From Being Executed.”