Appeals court rejects Brown's request for stay

His attorneys have until today to seek a review by the full court or file an appeal with the U.S. Supreme Court.

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WALLA WALLA -- A three-judge panel in San Francisco has denied a motion to stay the execution of Cal Brown early Friday.

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a 2-1 decision Saturday to turn down Brown's motion, said Janelle Guthrie, communications director for the state Attorney General's Office. His attorneys have until today to seek a review by the full court or file an appeal with the U.S. Supreme Court.

Brown, 52, is scheduled to be executed Friday for the 1991 torture and murder of 22-year-old Holly Washa, a Burien woman.

He is challenging the state's new one-drug protocol for lethal injection, as well as the state Department of Corrections' authority to obtain the drug used and the qualifications of the execution team.

His attorneys, Suzanne Lee Elliott and Gil Levy, both of Seattle, have also filed an emergency motion with the Washington State Supreme Court to halt the execution and a motion with King County Superior Court seeking a stay.

The motion before the state Supreme Court argues the death sentence should be reversed because information relating to Brown's mental illness, bipolar disorder, was improperly downplayed during his sentencing.

The King County motion argues that Brown is incompetent and cannot be executed as a result. King County prosecutors are responding to that motion, Guthrie said.

Brown was convicted of carjacking Washa at knifepoint near Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. He robbed, raped and tortured the young woman before stabbing and strangling her.

Guthrie said today the state Clemency and Pardons Board is also scheduled to meet Thursday, but Brown's case is not on its agenda at this time.

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