Judge denies Kansas man's bid to overturn death penalty

Wednesday, September 30, 2009 | 10:07 a.m. CDT

KANSAS CITY — A Kansas man's effort to overturn the death sentence he received for killing a Kansas City teenager has been denied.

U.S. District Judge Fernando Gaitan Jr. on Tuesday denied all motions from Wesley Ira Purkey, who was sentenced to death for the 1998 murder of Jennifer Long.

The Kansas City Star reports that 57-year-old Purkey's claims included that he had an ineffective trial lawyer and that prosecutors were guilty of misconduct.

Although he admitted that he killed Long and disposed of her remains at his home in Lansing, Purkey contended that he did not kidnap her across state lines. That factor led to his federal prosecution for kidnapping, which resulted in the death sentence.

Purkey is also serving a life sentence for the killing of an 80-year-old woman in Kansas City, Kan.


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