Stephen West scheduled for execution Thursday night

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Stephen West has chosen to be executed by electric chair according to a release from the Tennessee Department of Correction.

Tennessee's law allows inmates whose crimes were committed before January 1, 1999, to choose between lethal injection and electrocution.

West was moved to death watch on Tuesday morning just before midnight.

Tennessee Governor Bill Lee released a statement Tuesday saying he will not intervene in the scheduled execution of West.

"After thorough consideration of Stephen West’s request for clemency and a review of the case, the State of Tennessee’s sentence will stand, and I will not be intervening," Gov. Lee said.

During deathwatch West was placed in a cell adjacent to the execution chamber where he will be under 24-hour observation by a team of correctional officers.

Only those individuals who are on the West’s official visitation list are allowed to visit during the death watch period.

Stephen West is scheduled for execution Thursday evening at 7 p.m. CDT.

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A federal appeals court has ruled against a Tennessee death row inmate's challenge as he nears his execution date next week.

On Tuesday, a 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel upheld a lower court's decision to dismiss Stephen West's challenge of Tennessee's lethal injection protocol.

West was found guilty of the 1986 kidnapping and stabbing deaths of 51-year-old Wanda Romines and her 15-year-old daughter, Sheila Romines, and of raping the teen. He was 23 at the time.

West is scheduled to receive a lethal injection Aug. 15.

The 56-year-old inmate has asked Republican Gov. Bill Lee for clemency to spare his life, claiming his then-17-year-old accomplice killed both women. The accomplice is serving a life sentence with parole possible in 2030.

West's clemency application also says he suffers from mental illness.

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