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    US prisoner chooses firing squad

    Al Jazeera English

    by Al Jazeera English

    Ronnie Lee Gardner is a 49-year-old who was sentenced to death in 1985 for killing an attorney during a failed escape attempt from custody.

    He's chosen the manner of his own execution.

    "I would like the firing squad, please" Gardner told the court.

    Gardner was about to go on trial for another murder in Salt Lake City's court of justice. But in the basement a female acquaintance slipped him a loaded gun and he tried, but failed to shoot his way out.

    Lawmakers in Utah actually stopped convicts electing to die by firing squad in 2004 - but because Gardners conviction was earlier, he's kept the right to choose.

    The victim's former girlfriend says he would not have wanted his killer to be executed.

    Gardner's lawyers will appeal to Utah's Suprme Court, hoping the sentence will be commuted to life without parol - but if that fails an execution date has been set for June 18. (24 April 2010)