US Supreme Court Denies Charles Rhines' Death Penalty Appeal

Jan 21, 2014

The U-S Supreme Court has denied an appeal request from South Dakota Death Row inmate Charles Russell Rhines.  Justices refused to hear Rhines appeals concerning the death penalty and South Dakota’s execution methods.  State Attorney General Marty Jackley says the Court’s decision is major, but Rhines still has some legal challenges available.

Jackley says, “The United States Supreme Court order brings finality to the state court criminal process.  There still remains the federal court process, and he still has federal habeus avenues in the federal system.  He has already exercised a level of federal habeus, and his claims are currently pending before a habeus trial court.  We are in the process of seeking dismissal of that, but he has already begun that process.”

Rhines was sentenced to death for killing 22-year-old Donnivan Schaefer during the burglary of a Rapid City Doughnut shop in March of 19-92.