HUNTSVILLE, Texas —
A Texas death row inmate has lost a federal court appeal that sought to halt his scheduled execution this week for the slaying of a retired South Texas sheriff's deputy during a holdup 10 years ago.
Attorneys for John Quintanilla (kin-tuh-NEE'-uh) have told state lawyers they'll now head to the U.S. Supreme Court to try to save the 36-year-old from lethal injection Tuesday evening in Huntsville.
The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals over the weekend refused Quintanilla's appeal. He's facing punishment for the fatal shooting of 60-year-old Victor Billings during a robbery in Victoria in 2002. Billings was a retired chief deputy from Jackson County and was at the amusement center with his wife.
The execution would be the first of two set for this week in Texas.