Oklahoma attorney general says Cole execution stay request not warranted, should move forward

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OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt is urging a state appeals court to reject a death row inmate's request to halt his execution.

Legal papers filed by Pruitt's office urge the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals to deny a stay of execution for 50-year-old Benjamin Cole of Claremore. Cole is scheduled to be executed by lethal injection on Oct. 7 for the 2002 killing of his 9-month-old daughter, Brianna Cole. Benjamin Cole was convicted of first-degree murder in Rogers County.

Defense attorney asked the appeals court to half Cole's execution last week. They claim Cole is mentally ill, suffers from schizophrenia and brain damage and is incompetent to be executed under the U.S. Constitution.

In a response filed Wednesday, Pruitt says a judge rejected Cole's incompetency claims last month.

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