It was after 9 p.m. when the Supreme Court upheld a stay granted early in the day by the 3rd District Circuit Court of Appeals out of Philadelphia. That was two hours after Michael was scheduled to be put to death by lethal injection in Centre County.
Michael 56, pleaded guilty to the July 1993 murder of 16-year-old Trista Elizabeth Eng after kidnapping her in York County.
Michael’s stay is only temporary and state prison officials said his execution will be rescheduled as soon as Gov. Tom Corbett signs a new death warrant.
Officials said this isn’t the first time this sequence of events has happened.
“There were cases when it was stayed the stay was lifted and we moved forward and carried it out. So we’ve been this close,” said Susan McNaughton of the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections.
Michael’s attorney, Helen Marino, said he “continues to be incredibly remorseful for his crime.”
Michael was set be the first person executed in Pennsylvania since 1999.
Marino said the courts on Thursday saw that were “compelling claims relating to Michael’s debilitating mental conditions that have never been reviewed by any court.”
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