The 30th Execution of 2013
Michael Yowell, a Texas man was put to death October 9, 20013 for killing his parents at their Lubbock home 15 years ago during a drug-influenced rampage that also left his 89-year-old grandmother dead.
"Punch the button," he told the warden.
He took several deep breaths, then began snoring. Within about 30 seconds, all movement stopped.
He was pronounced dead 19 minutes later at 7:11 p.m.
Yowell tried to delay his execution, the 14th this year in the nation's most active death penalty state, by joining a lawsuit with two other condemned prisoners that challenged Texas prison officials' recent purchase of a new supply of pentobarbital for his scheduled lethal injection.
The U.S. Supreme Court rejected the appeal minutes before Yowell was taken to the Texas death chamber.
Yowell's parents, John, 55, and Carol, 53, were found dead in the wreckage of their home following an explosion on Mother's Day weekend in 1998. Yowell's 89-year-old grandmother, Viola Davis, who was staying there, died days later of injuries suffered in the blast.
Yowell already was on probation for burglary and drug convictions. He was arrested on federal firearms charges and charged with his parents' slayings after authorities determined his mother had been beaten and strangled and his father was shot. Prosecutors showed John Yowell was killed when he caught his son stealing his wallet. Yowell then attacked his mother, opened a gas valve and fled. The home blew up.
Two days before the execution, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to review appeals that contended Yowell received shoddy legal help at his 1999 trial and in the early stages of his appeals.
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