The Mississippi attorney general's office says the state Supreme Court should not grant a stay of execution for an inmate scheduled to die by injection Tuesday.
The Mississippi Supreme Court ruled 4-4 earlier this week to deny a rehearing on previous arguments in the case of Jan Michael Brawner.
In court procedures, a tie vote usually means an earlier ruling stands.
But Brawner's lawyer filed a motion for rehearing and asked for a stay, saying there's precedent in Mississippi that tie votes in death penalty cases favor inmates.
The attorney general's office argued Friday that a 4-4 split is binding and that a petitioner can't file a second motion for rehearing.
Brawner was convicted of the killings of his 3-year-old daughter, his ex-wife, and her parents in Tate County.