Tennessee death row inmate dies months before execution date

Photo courtesy (Tennessee Department of Corrections)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A Tennessee death row inmate who had terminal cancer has died months before his October execution.

The Tennessean reports 64-year-old Charles Walton Wright died Friday at the Riverbend Maximum Security Institution in Nashville. A Tennessee Department of Correction statement says he died of natural causes. Wright was sentenced to death in 1985 for a double slaying that authorities said started as a dispute over drugs.

Wright’s lawyer, federal public defender Kelley Henry, had been fighting for his client to be granted clemency and die outside of prison. Wright’s death came just hours after the execution of 68-year-old Donnie Edward Johnson. Henry says Johnson helped care for Wright when Wright was first diagnosed.

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