Arkansas parole board suggests mercy for 1 of 8 due to die

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Arkansas' parole board is suggesting that Gov. Asa Hutchinson extend mercy to one of eight inmates scheduled to die in a series of double-executions this month.

The Republican governor is not bound by the board's recommendation Wednesday that he spare Jason McGehee's life. The 40-year-old inmate was convicted of killing a teenager who had told police about a theft ring operating in far northern Arkansas.

The state has adopted an unprecedented execution schedule with its plan to put eight men to death in a 10-day period. Only Texas has executed that many inmates in a month, doing it twice in 1997.

In a separate decision, the board says a petition by Kenneth Williams was without merit. Williams was condemned after escaping and killing a man who lived near the prison.