Published: Oct 25, 2012 3:59 PM EDT

MIAMI (AP) - Legal wrangling continues in the planned execution of a mass killer convicted of eight killings that jolted South Florida in the 1970s.
    
On Thursday, lawyers for the state of Florida asked the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals to lift a stay of execution for John Errol Ferguson.
    
The federal appeals court on Tuesday blocked the scheduled execution of a mass killer convicted of eight killings that jolted South Florida in the 1970s. The U.S. Supreme Court upheld the stay.
    
The court's decision came during an evening flurry of legal decisions over claims that 64-year-old Ferguson suffers from mental illness so severe he cannot be executed. Ferguson, a paranoid schizophrenic with delusions he's the "prince of God," had faced a planned lethal injection Tuesday in Florida's death chamber.

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