28th Execution of 2010
June 15, 2010
David Lee Powell, a former drug dealer convicted of using an assault rifle to kill an Austin police officer during a traffic stop 32 years ago, received lethal injection about 30 minutes after the U.S. Supreme Court refused to grant a stay of execution.
Powell’s attorneys had argued, unsuccessfully, that his exemplary behavior on death row over the past three decades should result in a commutation of his death sentence. Powell's lawyers suggested that jurors were wrong when they decided he would be a continuing danger and should die for killing 26-year-old Police Officer Ralph Ablanedo.
Asked by a warden if he had a final statement, Powell gave no response.
As the drugs began flowing into his arms, he gasped slightly, began snoring quietly, then showed no movement. Nine minutes later, at 6:19 p.m. CDT, he was pronounced dead.
He is the 13th offender in Texas and the 28th nationally to be executed this year.