St. Louis County prosecutor Wesley Bell wants Marcellus Williams’ murder conviction and death penalty overturned.

He filed a motion Friday in St. Louis County Circuit Court which said in part that there is “compelling evidence” that Williams “may be innocent or may have been erroneously convicted.” Williams was sentenced to death for the 1998 murder of former Post-Dispatch reporter Felicia Gayle in her home in University City.

Williams was hours away from being executed in 2017 when then-governor Eric Greitens issued a stay and impaneled a board to examine DNA evidence that was unable to be tested at the time of the trial. But current governor Mike Parson dissolved the board last summer because no conclusion had been reached, allowing Williams’ execution to move forward.

In response, he and the Midwest Innocence Project filed a lawsuit against Parson for dissolving the board and lifting the stay of execution. Attorney General Andrew Bailey has asked the Missouri Supreme Court to set a new execution date.

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