Monday, December 9, 2013

The Clock is Ticking for Billy Ray Irick

After a long stretch on Tennessee's death row, time is finally running out for convicted killer Billy Ray Irick. Sentenced to death for the rape and murder of a seven-year-old girl, Irick has been awaiting execution for an astounding 27 years. But on January 15th, that long wait will finally come to an end.

Despite overwhelming evidence, Irick's lawyers withdrew an insanity defense originally filed at the beginning of his trial. Perhaps they considered it normal behavior for someone to hear and obey voices in their head--sometimes referred to by Irick as "the devil," and other times simply as "the voice." They might've also seen nothing wrong with Irick chasing a girl down the street with a machete just because he didn't like the way she looked, or Irick's constant fear that the police would break into his home and kill him with chainsaws. Irick also once destroyed a television with an axe, and cut his sister's pajamas off of her with a razor while she slept.

But while sanity is subjective, inevitability is not. Only one month remains before Irick pays the ultimate penalty for his crimes.

UPDATE: Apparently that clock will keep on ticking just a little bit longer. Irick's execution has been rescheduled for October 7.

UPDATED UPDATE: Irick's execution has now been pushed back indefinitely as the state of Tennessee wrangles with red tape regarding its method of execution.