RICHMOND, Va. (AP) – Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe has called off a man’s execution in a murder-for-hire case, citing concerns about some of the information presented to jurors.
The Democratic governor commuted 38-year-old Ivan Teleguz’s sentence to life in prison Thursday.
McAuliffe cited concerns about information presented to jurors that he said is not supported by evidence, including that Teleguz was part of the “Russian Mafia.”
Teleguz had been scheduled to be executed Tuesday. He was convicted in 2006 of hiring another man to kill his ex-girlfriend in Harrisonburg.
After his trial, two prosecution witnesses who implicated Teleguz said they lied. The man convicted of fatally stabbing Stephanie Sipe in 2001 has maintained that Teleguz hired him to do the killing.
Sipe’s sister has said her family remains convinced Teleguz is guilty.