Billy Ray Irick filed lawsuit before execution to block autopsy

Tennessee News

Billy Ray Irick, the first inmate executed in Tennessee in nearly a decade, filed a lawsuit the same day as his death last week.  

Irick filed the lawsuit to block an autopsy being performed on his body, citing “religious grounds.” 

His lawyer also cited Irick’s Native American heritage and religious beliefs as a way to temporarily block an autopsy.  

Irick was executed last Thursday night for the 1985 rape and murder of 7-year-old  Paula Dyer of Knoxville.  

He was pronounced dead at 7:48 p.m. Witnesses said his last words were, “I just want to say I’m really sorry, and that’s it.” 

Read More: A Look Back: Billy Ray Irick to be executed for 1985 murder of 7-year-old Paula Dyer

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