JACKSON, Miss. (AP) -- The Mississippi Supreme Court has ordered attorneys for death row inmate Charles Ray Crawford to file briefs by late May supporting his appeal of a 1994 rape conviction.
The Supreme Court in March refused to set an execution date for Crawford until it decides Crawford's pending appeal in a separate rape case.
That conviction was cited as an aggravating factor by prosecutors in justifying the death sentence Crawford received late in 1994 for the slaying of a junior college student.
The court set out the briefing schedule Monday. Prosecutors will have 30 days after Crawford's lawyers file his arguments to file a response.
If the Supreme Court upholds Crawford's conviction in the earlier case, Attorney General Jim Hood could again petition for a new execution date for Crawford.