Dallas man set to die for killing daughters, 9 and 6


HUNTSVILLE, Texas (AP) — Attorneys are asking federal courts to halt the scheduled execution of a 60-year-old former Dallas accountant condemned for gunning down his young daughters while their mother helplessly listened on the phone.

John Battaglia is set for lethal injection Wednesday evening for the 2001 slayings of his 9- and 6-year-old girls. His lawyers contend they need more time to show he’s incompetent for capital punishment.

Texas attorneys say the last-day appeals are a fishing expedition and there’s no evidence to show he’s incompetent.

Prosecutors said the slayings at Battaglia’s apartment were in revenge for his ex-wife’s harassment complaints that led to an arrest warrant issued against him. He already was on probation at the time.

His execution would be the nation’s 10th this year, and the sixth in Texas.