A United States of American judge has given a stay of execution to female murderer, Lisa Montgomery.
The stay of execution came just hours before Montgomery was due to be given a lethal injection.
Lisa Montgomery is the only woman on America’s federal death row.
Immediately, after the stay of execution, the judge, James Hanlon said a competency hearing should be held first.
Meanwhile, Lisa Montgomery’s lawyers had argued she was mentally incompetent to be executed, saying she was born brain-damaged.
In 2004, Lisa Montgomery strangled a pregnant woman in Missouri. After strangling the lady, she cut out and kidnapped the baby.
Lisa who is now 52 years old would have been the first female federal inmate to be put to death in almost 70 years had her execution in Terre Haute, Indiana, gone ahead as scheduled on 12 January.
Monday Ruling on the female murderer
During the ruling on Monday, Judge Hanlon of the US District Court for the Southern District of Indiana wrote:
“Ms Montgomery’s motion to stay execution is granted to allow the court to conduct a hearing to determine Ms Montgomery’s competence to be executed.
“Ms. Montgomery’s current mental state is so divorced from reality that she cannot rationally understand the government’s rationale for her execution.
“The court will set a time and date for the hearing in a separate order in due course,” Judge Hanlon wrote.
However, Lisa Montgomery’s attorneys welcomed the ruling.
Attorney Kelley Henry said in a statement:
“The court was right to put a stop to Lisa Montgomery’s execution,”
“As the court found, Mrs Montgomery ‘made a strong showing’ of her current incompetence to be executed.
“Mrs Montgomery has brain damage and severe mental illness that was exacerbated by the lifetime of sexual torture she suffered at the hands of caretakers,” the attorney added.
However, CNN reported that prosecutors have filed a notice to appeal the judge’s ruling.
Initially, her execution date was originally set for December 2020. But a stay of execution was agreed after her attorneys contracted Covid-19.
It should be noted that the last woman to be executed by the United States government was Bonnie Heady.
Bonnie Heady died in a gas chamber in Missouri in 1953, according to the Death Penalty Information Center.
Morever, Federal executions had been stopped for 17 years before President Donald Trump ordered them to resume in January 2020.
Notwithstanding, the female murderer, Montgomery may escape the death penalty totally.
This is because the President-elect, Joe Biden has said he will seek to end federal executions.
Joe Biden is due to take office on 20th January 2021.
Sources: BBC.com, Facebook,