In 2011 a South Dakota man stabbed a 75-year-old woman and stole her car. His plan was to drive to Washington, D.C., and kill President Barack Obama. James McVay made it as far as Madison, Wis., before police stopped and arrested him.
On Tuesday a judge agreed with a jury’s unanimous vote to sentence the 44-year-old—who pleaded guilty but mentally ill—to death for the killing of Maybelle Schein. Had one person not voted for the death penalty, McVay would have been sentenced to life without parole, the Associated Press reports.
“I don’t have a lot to say here,” said Circuit Judge Peter Lieberman, AP reports. “This is a situation where a jury’s verdict has a lot more weight than what I could say.”
AP reports that Schein’s family did not speak during the hearing. Because McVay has been sentenced to death, the South Dakota Supreme Court will automatically review his case.
Read more at the Associated Press.