SIOUX FALLS — South Dakota Department of Corrections officials scheduled Charles Rhines' execution for Monday afternoon, but the 26-year death row inmate is continuing to make last-ditch efforts to stop his execution by once again appealing to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Rhines is appealing a case he lost in the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals last week, asking if the court to decide if the federal government has authority to order South Dakota prison officials to allow mental health experts meet with Rhines regarding preparing a clemency application. The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals had previously dismissed an appeal to the court because the state's Board of Pardons and Paroles denied a petition from Rhines for clemency last year.
The appeals court said the governor had the clemency decision, and Kristi Noem has said she plans to allow the execution to move forward.
In a second case, attorneys for Rhines asked for a writ of habeas corpus, to ask the Supreme Court to direct a federal district court to hear new evidence regarding some jurors' anti-gay bias.
Rhines' request for a stay of execution is addressed to Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch. Rhines was sentenced to death in 1993 for the fatal stabbing of Donnivan Schaeffer, 22, in Rapid City in 1992.
On Friday afternoon, South Dakota Chief Warden Darin Young set the time of Rhines' execution for 1:30 p.m. Monday, Nov. 4. at the South Dakota State Penitentiary in Sioux Falls.