Wednesday, April 02, 2003

March 26, 2003

Mentally gone....

Last Meal: a Mexican Lunch: tortillas, tacos, burritos, Spanish rice, cheese dips, chips, six Cokes, and chocolate cake.

The skinny:
Colburn was executed for the murder and attempted rape of a woman. Colburn stabbed and strangled the victim in his apartment after attempting to rape her. He later told a sheriff's officer that he had found her hitchhiking near his apartment when she asked for a drink of water. He invited her inside his apartment and attempted to rape her. When she resisted, he choked her until she passed out, then he stabbed her in the neck with a knife. . Colburn had been in mental institutions at least twice and in and out of prisons numerous times for robbery, burglary, assault and arson. Colburn murdered Murphy on June 26, 1994, in his apartment near Conroe. Murphy, 55, was hitchhiking on a street outside Colburn's apartment

Last words and such: "I know it was a mistake, I have no one to blame but myself," he said. "It's no big deal about choosing right from wrong. I pray that everyone involved overlooks the stupidity. Everybody has problems and I won't be a part of the problem anymore. I can quit worrying now, it was all a mistake." As the lethal drug cocktail coursed through his veins, Colburn said: "I can start to feel it now -- it's going to be like passing out on drugs."

Schizo....Mental health advocates argued that the U.S. Supreme Court's recent ruling against the execution of the mentally retarded should have applied to Colburn but two court-appointed psychiatrists said he understood his punishment. Colburn had suffered from schizophrenia for the past 20 years and his condition had worsened in recent months, according to his attorney, James Rytting, who said his client had the reasoning ability of a 10-year-old.

Factoid: Colburn was the 12th convicted killer executed this year in Texas and the 301st since the state restored the death penalty in 1982. Texas remains on a pace to top the record 40 carried out in 2000.

Close call: The high court stopped Colburn's scheduled execution November 6, one minute before he could have been moved to the death chamber.