US Supreme Court temporarily halts Ga. execution

ATLANTA (AP) - A U.S. Supreme Court justice has temporarily blocked Georgia from executing a death row inmate convicted of killing a preschool teacher in 1988.

The order from Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas stops Georgia officials from executing Emmanuel Hammond on Tuesday night by lethal injection until the top court can evaluate an appeal from his defense attorneys.

Hammond's defense team has questioned the legality of using execution drugs that it said came from a company operating out of a driving school in London. Georgia's Supreme Court refused to intervene earlier Tuesday.

Hammond was convicted of the murder of Julie Love, who was abducted in north Atlanta after her car ran out of gas. Prosecutors say Love was beaten and raped before Hammond shot her.

Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.