District judge postpones Texas woman's execution

Associated Press
File - This undated file photo provided by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice shows Kimberly McCarthy. She is scheduled to be executed Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2013 for the July 1997 killing of retired college professor Dorothy Booth during a robbery. McCarthy's execution would be the first of a woman in Texas in more than eight years and the fourth overall in the state, where the 492 prisoners put to death since capital punishment resumed in Texas 30 years ago make it the nation's most active death penalty state. (AP Photo/Texas Department of Criminal Justice, File)

HUNTSVILLE, Texas (AP) — A Dallas judge has halted the scheduled execution of a Texas woman that was set for Tuesday evening. She would have been the first woman put to death in the U.S. in three years.

The order from state District Judge Larry Mitchell moves the execution of 51-year-old Kimberly McCarthy to April 3.

It wasn't immediately certain if the Dallas County District Attorney's office will appeal the ruling.

Lawyers for McCarthy, who is black, argued the jury that convicted and sentenced her to death was selected improperly based on race. It was made up of 11 white people and one black person.

She faced lethal injection for the 1997 beating, stabbing and robbery of a 71-year-old neighbor in Lancaster, about 15 miles south of Dallas.