Tuesday, April 22, 2003

April 22, 2003

The thrill killer is gone, the thrill killer is gone away...

Last Meal: None requested.

The skinny: Chavez, a parolee, nicknamed "The Thrill Killer," was said to have killed at least a dozen people in Dallas during a four-month SPREE was executed. Chavez received a lethal injection for the murder of his first of the victim. Chavez was only charged in one murder although he was linked to 11 more slayings during his trial.

Final words and such: In his final statement, Chavez apologized to the victim's families. "To the media, I would like you to tell all the victims and their loved ones that I am truly, truly sorry for taking their loved ones' lives," he said. "And I hope they will find it in their heart to forgive me for what I did to them. I am a different person now, but that does not change the fact of the bad things I have committed."

Seek and ye shall find: Chavez had always maintained his innocence but he became a born-again Christian on death row.

SPREE! Chavez was on parole for a 1986 murder when he killed thw victim during a robbery at a phone booth. Prosecutors said five people were killed on that day, the bloodiest day of the spree that began in March.

Lawyer talk: The former prosecutor said that he would never forget that Chavez grinned when the judge sentenced him to death.

"What separates this guy from others I tried is, he derived a great deal of pleasure from killing," he said. "For some, it's greed, a desire for money. This one, to have already been through the prison system for murder, to have been paroled, then to start this spree, shooting in the face, running over the bodies, there just seemed to be a twisted side to him that you don't encounter in real life. He really does stand apart."

Factoid: Chavez was the 13th convicted killer executed this year in Texas and the 302nd since the state restored the death penalty in 1982.