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Gov. Lee grants temporary reprieve for Oscar Smith after "oversight in preparation" hours before execution was scheduled

Governor Bill Lee said there was an oversight in preparations for the lethal injection and the execution would not be held Thursday night.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Oscar Franklin Smith was set to be executed Thursday night but before the execution, he was granted a temporary reprieve by Governor Bill Lee.

Lee said there was an oversight in preparations for the lethal injection, and he granted the reprieve while they addressed the Tennessee Department of Correction's protocol. 

Additional information about the decision to halt the execution was not immediately available.

Smith was convicted in the 1989 murders of his estranged wife, Judy Lynn Smith, and her two sons from a previous marriage, Chad and Jason Burnett, in Nashville. He was sentenced to death for all three murders and was placed on "death watch" late Monday night.

Lee released a statement Tuesday night saying he would not intervene in the execution. The statement is available below.

“After thorough consideration of Oscar Smith’s request for clemency and an extensive review of the case, the State of Tennessee’s sentence will stand, and I will not be intervening.”

Smith had already chosen his last meal to be a double bacon cheeseburger, a deep-dish apple pie and vanilla bean ice cream. He was given the meal at 4:12 p.m. on Thursday.

Information about any new execution date was not immediately available.

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