Sunday, July 27, 2003

July 24, 2003

Last Meal: Janecka had a final meal of chicken fried steak, gravy, french fries, ketchup, salad, blue cheese dressing, iced tea with lemon, two sodas, rolls, and butter.

The Skinny: Allen Wayne Janecka was executed for the murder of a 14-month-old boy in an inheritance scheme that shocked Houston and fooled medical examiners. On July 6, 1979, a neighbor discovered the bodies of the husband and wife in their home, along with their 14-month-old son. Each had been shot in the head. The boy was shot while surrounded by stuffed animals in his crib. Although the police did not find a weapon on the premises, the medical examiner initially ruled that wife had killed her husband and son, then committed suicide. The Houston Police Department continued to investigate the case for the next year-and-a-half, focusing on woman's brother, who stood to gain a substantial inheritance upon the family's death. During the investigation, uncovered evidence showing that the woman's brother hired Walt Waldhauser to murder the family, and that Waldhauser in turn hired Janecka to commit the murders. Janecka later confessed to the murders when questioned by police, and also television interviewers.

Final words and such: Janecka thanked his family and spiritual advisors in his final statement.

"For many years I have done things my way, which has caused a lot of pain to me, my family and many others. Today I have realized that for peace and happiness, one has to do things God's way," he said. "I want to thank my family for their support. I love you. I am taking you with me. ... I also want to say thanks to the chaplains who I have met through the years and who have brought me a long way."

Factoids: Janecka was the...
49th murderer executed in U.S. in 2003
869th murderer executed in U.S. since 1976
20th murderer executed in Texas in 2003
309th murderer executed in Texas since 1976

Janecka spent 22 years on death row.

He was the second inmate executed in connection with the slayings of the toddler and his parents.

Markham Duff-Smith, the woman's brother, was executed in 1993, moments after admitting for the first time to a role in those killings and the 1975 slaying of his mother..

This summary was compiled from various news accounts.