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OHIO

Obese inmate’s execution claim rejected by judge

COLUMBUS — A condemned killer trying to delay his execution because of his extreme weight hasn’t raised enough new issues to warrant the legal challenge, a federal judge ruled Monday.

Death row inmate Ronald Post, who weighs more than 400 pounds, is asking the courts to stop his January execution on the grounds his weight could cause him to suffer severe pain during the procedure.

Post is prohibited from challenging his execution by injection because he raised similar claims in his first set of federal appeals in 1997, Judge Lesley Wells said Monday in Cleveland.

In general, death row inmates are allowed only one federal appeal when alleging the same set of facts.

Post, 53, was sentenced to die for the 1983 shooting death of hotel desk clerk Helen Vantz in Elyria. His execution is scheduled for Jan. 16.

FLORIDA

Coroner: Swallowing roaches killed man during contest

MIAMI — A Florida man choked to death after downing dozens of live roaches to win a contest earlier this year in which the grand prize was a python, according to an autopsy released Monday.

Edward Archbold, 32, of West Palm Beach, died as a result of “asphyxia due to choking and aspiration of gastric contents,” according to the report released by the Broward County medical examiner’s office. It said his airway was obstructed by the roach body parts, which caused him to not be able to breathe.

“There is a flap called the epiglottis that is supposed to stop objects from going into the lungs,” medical examiner Craig T. Mallak wrote in an email to the AP. “Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work. In the video you could see him trying to swallow and breathe at the same time. We can’t do both simultaneously.”

Lab tests for drugs came back negative. The death has been ruled an accident.

MICHIGAN

Suspect finally charged in deaths of 4 women

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