Arkansas Supreme Court justices are to hear an appeal from a death row inmate who says he was mentally unfit when he was tried in 2002 for the murder and mutilation of a woman at a transient camp outside of Van Buren.
Rickey Dale Newman was convicted in the 2001 death of 46-year-old Marie Cholette. After a one-day trial, he was sentenced to death.
The high court is to hear oral arguments at 10 a.m. Thursday. Newman had said he wanted to be executed but changed his mind in 2005 after an execution date had been set for him and had his attorney apply for a stay.
Lawyers for Newman claim that the trial judge was wrong to have deemed Newman mentally competent.