WASHINGTON D.C. — A man convicted in the kidnapping, rape and murder of a Kansas City, Kansas 10-year-old has been scheduled for federal execution later this summer.
Keith Nelson was found guilty of kidnapping 10-year-old Pamela Butler, who was taken while rollerblading in front of her home in KCK. Her mother, Cherri West, said her daughter saw it happen, screamed and chased Nelson’s car down the street. A witness got Nelson’s license plate, but he managed to get away.
He was arrested on the banks of the Kansas River two days after her disappearance.
Pamela’s body was found later in a wooded area in Grain Valley, Missouri. The U.S. Department of Justice states Nelson raped her and then strangled her with a wire.
“On October 25, 2001, Nelson pled guilty in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri to the kidnapping and unlawful interstate transportation of a child for the purpose of sexual abuse which resulted in death, and he was sentenced to death,” the U.S. Department of Justice stated in a news release.
Nelson tried arguing that his attorney had provided ineffective assistance in 2018, but the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected that appeal.
“Each of these inmates has exhausted appellate and post-conviction remedies, and no legal impediments prevent their executions, which will take place at U.S. Penitentiary Terre Haute, Indiana,” according to the news release.
Nelson’s case is just one of four cases scheduled for execution by lethal injection. Attorney General William Barr on Monday directed the Federal Bureau of Prisons to schedule the executions of the federal inmates, all convicted of murdering children.
Nelson’s execution is scheduled for August 28, 2020.