First Indian-American prisoner to be executed on February 23
On February 23 the first death row Indian-American prisoner would be executed. Raghunandan Yandamuri, 32 was convicted after being held for killing a baby and her grandmother.
Raghunandan Yandamuri, 32, in 2014 was given death penalty for kidnapping and killing a 61-year-old elderly Indian woman and her 10-month grand-daughter. It was seen as part of a botched kidnapping-for-ransom plot.
Yandamuri's execution date has been set by local correctional authorities.
However, he is likely to get a reprieve because of a 2015 moratorium on the death penalty by Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf.
Yandamuri is the first Indian-American to face the death penalty.
Federal authorities alleged that killings were part of a botched kidnapping-for-ransom plot.
A native of Andhra Pradesh, Yandamuri had come to the US on an H-1B visa. He holds an advanced degree in electrical and computer science engineering. Following his conviction, he asked that death penalty is imposed upon him. Later he appealed his sentence but lost his appeal in April 2017.
The local Times Herald on Wednesday reported that even though his execution by lethal injection is set for February 23, he might get a reprieve because a death penalty moratorium previously was put in place by Governor Tom Wolf.
"The law provides that when the governor does not sign a warrant of execution within the specified time period, the secretary of corrections has 30 days within which to issue a notice of execution," Pennsylvania Department of Corrections said in a news release.
According to the report, Wolf imposed a moratorium on the death penalty in 2015.
State officials are awaiting the results of a study conducted by the Pennsylvania Task Force and Advisory Committee on Capital Punishment, before moving forward with any executions.
Pennsylvania has not seen any executions in the last nearly 20 years. Since 1976, three persons have been executed in the States between 1995 and 1999.