Execution of woman who killed pregnant Missouri woman delayed

The federal execution of a Kansas woman on death row for murdering a pregnant Missouri woman and cutting her baby out of her body is being delayed due to the pandemic.

A federal judge is temporarily blocking Lisa Montgomery's execution because her lawyers caught COVID-19 while visiting her in prison.  The lawyers are working on clemency proceedings for Montgomery and they claim their client cannot act on her own behalf due to mental illness.   

Montgomery is on death row for the 2004 murder of Bobbie Jo Stinnett in Skidmore, which is in Nodaway County in northwest Missouri.  Montgomery was convicted of using a rope to strangle Stinnett, who was eight months pregnant at the time.  Authorities said she used a kitchen knife to remove the baby from Stinnett’s womb and tried to pass the child off as her own. 

The execution was scheduled for December 8th at the federal prison in Terre Haute, Indiana. It has been pushed back to December 31st. Her lawyers have until December 24th to recover or find new legal representation for Montgomery.