- Associated Press - Friday, December 16, 2016

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) - A circuit judge will decide by the end of the month whether to uphold the wishes of convicted prison guard killer Rodney Berget to drop his death penalty appeal.

Berget made the request to Judge Doug Hoffman in August. His attorneys oppose the motion.

Berget and another inmate, Eric Robert, were convicted of killing guard Ronald Johnson in 2011. Robert was executed in 2012.

The Argus Leader reports (https://argusne.ws/2hWO8MP ) that Berget chose not to appear in circuit court Thursday morning in front Hoffman for a hearing about his appeal. Berget’s attorney, Eric Schulte, again asked the judge to go against his client’s wishes to drop the appeal and give him additional time to determine Berget’s mental capacity.

Prosecutors say there’s no evidence to suggest Berget isn’t competent.

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Information from: Argus Leader, https://www.argusleader.com

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