FAYETTEVILLE (AP) — A man convicted of killing his ex-girlfriend was removed from a Washington County courtroom after speaking to the victim’s parents.

Thirty-one-year-old Zachariah Marcyniuk (MAR’-se-nick) was in court Friday to be appointed an attorney for his post-conviction appeal. He was convicted and sentenced to death for the beating and stabbing death in 2007 of 24-year-old Katie Wood, formerly of Greenbrier, in Fayetteville.

Before the hearing began — Marcyniuk turned to Wood’s parents and said "I didn’t kill her on purpose. I know you know that. I never got a chance to tell you that in person."

Deputies took Marcyniuk from the room and Wood’s parents listened to the hearing from another room.

The Arkansas Public Defender’s Commission was appointed to represent Marcyniuk in his appeal.