Supreme Court asked to halt Texas execution

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HUNTSVILLE, Texas (AP) — Attorneys for a Texas death row inmate are appealing to the U.S. Supreme Court just hours before the man’s scheduled execution.

Forty-eight-year-old Duane Buck is scheduled for lethal injection Thursday evening for fatally shooting his ex-girlfriend a week after they broke up in June 1995. The shootings also killed a man in her Houston apartment.

Buck also has asked Texas Gov. Rick Perry for a reprieve.

Buck’s lawyers are basing their appeal in part on a question about race that was asked during the punishment phase of his capital murder trial.

Defense attorneys argue that a psychologist under cross-examination by a prosecutor violated Buck’s constitutional rights when he was asked whether black people were more likely to commit violence.

The Texas attorney general’s office says there was no error.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.