Wednesday, June 21, 2006

June 20. 2006

...“Yeah, I got my eat on.”...

Last Meal: Reese had a final meal request of Beef or Chicken Fajitas w/cheese and & sour cream with jalapenos, beef and cheese enchiladas w/jalapenos and salsa, bacon cheeseburger with the works & jalapenos (small combination), pizza with jalapenos & everything, chicken salad w/ranch dressing & jalapenos, soft beef taco's & salsa, fried chicken w/ketchup & hot sauce.

The skinny: Reese, 28, an admitted drug dealer, was executed for a shooting spree that left three men dead and two others wounded outside a Fort Worth convenience store.

More skinny: Reese's 18-year-old girlfriend walked out of the convenience store about four miles southeast of downtown Fort Worth and drew the attention of several men who were drinking and playing dice outside the place. Reese became angry with the men flirting with his girlfriend.

The couple left, met up with three others, including a pair of juveniles, and armed themselves with handguns and assault rifles. With the girlfriend driving and accompanied also by her 2-year-old son, she dropped off the four near the store.

The gunmen then sprayed the scene with bullets. the girlfriend drove back around, retrieved her friends and they all sped off. A witness told police that Reese was bragging about the killings. That led to the arrests of Reese and his companions. Detectives found ammunition in Reese's car that matched bullets found at the shooting scene. The girlfriend is serving a life prison term on a capital murder conviction. The three others, including the two juveniles who were charged as adults, agreed to plea bargains and are serving sentences ranging from 35 to 50 years.

Legal Machinations: Reese's lawyers went to the federal courts to try to block the punishment, citing among their claims a U.S. Supreme Court ruling a week ago that condemned prisoners can file special appeals challenging the lethal injection method under a federal civil rights law after exhausting regular appeals. The high court, however, said inmates would not always be entitled to delays in their executions. In Reese's case, the justices rejected his appeals about 20 minutes before he was scheduled to be taken to the death chamber.

Last words and such: Reese had to be carried into the death chamber.

Brenda Reese asked her son through the window if he enjoyed his final meal, which consisted of fajitas, enchiladas, a burger, pizza, tacos and fried chicken.

“Yeah,” he replied to her. “I got my eat on.”

"I want everyone to know I did not walk to this because this is straight-up murder. I am not going to play a part in my own murder. No one should have to do that." He expressed love to his mother and to relatives of the murder victims as they watched from separate windows nearby. "I do not know all of your names and I don't know how you feel about me. And whether you believe it or not, I did not kill them." He said that he was at peace and he wanted them to be at peace. "You have to move past it. It is time to move on." He said he was glad that the execution was occurring and that his time on death row was not "10 or 20 years." As the drugs began taking effect, he said, "This is some nasty." Then he gasped.

At that moment, his mother, Brenda Reese, began pounding with her fists on the chamber window and began screaming repeatedly, "They killed my baby." She kicked two holes in the death chamber wall and eventually was removed from the chamber. She sobbed loudly as she walked from the prison and nearly collapsed as she reached the prison administration building across the street.

Factoids: Reese was the...

23rd murderer executed in U.S. in 2006
1027th murderer executed in U.S. since 1976
12th murderer executed in Texas in 2006
367th murderer executed in Texas since 1976

Scheduled to die next in Texas is serial killer Angel Maturino Resendiz, a former FBI Ten Most Wanted fugitive, set for lethal injection June 27 for the fatal stabbing of Houston-area physician Claudia Benton in December 1998. Benton is among at least 15 victims police in Texas, California, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky and Illinois have linked to Resendiz, who became known as the "Railroad Killer" because many of the attacks were near railroad tracks and because he was known to hop on freight trains to travel around the United States.