In an official release commenting on the case the Governor stated, “After conferring with the appropriate parties, as well as thoroughly reviewing the clemency petition and the judicial opinions regarding this case, I find no compelling reason to set aside the sentence that was selected by the jury and imposed and affirmed by the courts. Accordingly, I decline to intervene.”
Inmate Powell’s case has garnered national attention because of the bizarre behavior that put him on death row.
After being sentenced to life in prison Powell wrote a four-page letter taunting and ridiculing prosecutors for their inability to secure a death sentence. Assuming he could no longer face the death penalty he bragged that he tried to rape his teenage friend before stabbing her to death. At that point he had admitted to conditions necessary for the death sentence in Virginai and his sentence was converted. Had he not sent the letter, Paul Warner Powell likely would have served a life sentence in prison.
Instead, the 31-year-old is scheduled to die Thursday at the Greensville Correctional Facility. Powell has chosen to die in Virginia’s electric chair.