TEXAS LAST MEAL
May 19, 2005
...Maybe I should of moved to Canada instead of Texas ! HA HA!...
Last Meal: Cartwright request fried chicken, a cheeseburger, onion rings, french fries, bacon, sausage, cheesecake and cinnamon rolls.
The skinny: Cartwright, a Chicago man, was executed for murdering a man after inviting him to share a beer in a city park.
More skinny: Richard Cartwright, Dennis Hagood and Kelly Overstreet hatched a plan to rob a gay man by posing as male prostitutes. They thought such a victim would be an easy target because he would be less apt to report the robbery to police. They met the 37-year-old victim after he pulled up in a small black sports car. The trio invited him to go drinking with them at a remote gulfside park. When they reached the secluded area, Cartwright pulled out a gun and said, “This is a robbery. Put your hands on the cement [wall].” At the same time, Overstreet held a knife to the man’s neck. Their plan turned deadly when the victim refused to give up and tried to flee. One of the men tried to stab him but could not kill him. Cartwright then shot him in the back with a .38 caliber pistol.
The man's body washed up on the beach in Corpus Christi the following day. The robbery netted the three accomplices between $60 and $200 - money they all use to buy drugs.
While awaiting trial Cartwright wrote letters from jail to his partners urging them to all agree on a single story. The letters were intercepted by authorities and used to help convict him.
Hagood was convicted and sentenced to 20 years imprisonment. Overstreet was convicted and sentenced to 50 years imprisonment. Both testified against Cartwright.
The net: Richard Cartwright took his case to the Internet, claiming police charged the wrong man with murder. Private investigator Tina Church, who has taken up Cartwright's case said, "Kelly Overstreet is the person who slit this young man's throat, and he places the gun in Rich Cartwright's hands. Rich has never...Rich has always maintained his innocence."
At Cartwright's trial, the medical examiner testified that the knife wounds were not fatal, and that the gunshot wound was the cause of death.
On death row, Cartwright declined to be interview by reporters, preferring instead to write letters to anti-death-penalty organizations, who posted his letters on their web sites. "I did not commit the crime for which I was convicted and sentenced to death," he stated. His claim of innocence, however, revolved around his responsibility for the murder, not his involvement in it.
A another bad call: Cartwright was offered a plea deal of 40 years in prison, but he turned it down, saying at the time that he would rather die than spend his life in prison..
Last words and such: "I want to apologize to the victim's family for any pain and suffering I caused them." He then he urged his fellow death row inmates to "just keep your heads up and stay strong."
Factoids: Cartwright was the...
25th murderer executed in U.S. in 2005
969th murderer executed in U.S. since 1976
8th murderer executed in Texas in 2005
344th murderer executed in Texas since 1976
RICHARD CARTWRIGHT'S PEN PAL REQUEST:
I'm a 29 year old male who was born and spent 24 years in the beautiful city of Chicago. I came down to Texas at the age of 25 and was on Texas death row one year later. I am looking for an open minded person to correspond and hopefully build a meaningful friendship with.
Death row can be a very lonely and depressing place and reaching out to someone in the free world is one of very few ways to escape the mental and physical torment. When I was in the free world I made my living as an automobile technician. I had many hobbies such as building muscle cars, riding motorcycles, fishing, walking on the beach at night, listening to rock and roll, and playing hockey.
As a matter of fact in 1984 through 1988 the hockey team I played for out of Chicago (The Huskies) were invited to play in the friendship tournament in Kitchener Canada. I also played for a triple A hockey team in 1988 that made it to the Silver Stick tournament in Ottawa Canada !!
I don't recall the name of the river in Kitchener, but it was froze over and we all went skating down the river and the sides were covered with absolutely beautiful ice sculptures.
Maybe I should of moved to Canada instead of Texas ! HA HA!
Thank you for your time and concern.
Send letters to:
Rich Cartwright 999224