Steven Smith. Image: Ohio Department of Corrections.
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Ohio Gov. John Kasich has turned down a request for mercy by a condemned killer who says he intended to rape his girlfriend's 6-month-old daughter but not to kill her.
Kasich's decision rejects arguments by attorneys for Steven Smith, who said evidence shows the baby died because Smith was too drunk to realize his sexual assault was killing the child.
Kasich's announcement Wednesday upheld a unanimous April 10 ruling against mercy by the Ohio Parole Board.
The board said some arguments for sparing Smith, such as his turbulent childhood, were far outweighed by the abhorrent nature of the crime.
The 46-year-old Smith is scheduled to die May 1.
ANDREW WELSH-HUGGINS, AP Legal Affairs Writer