The 23rd Execution of 2015
Juan Martin Garcia, a teenage Houston gang member who spent his entire adulthood on Texas' death row, was executed on October 6, 2015 for the 1998 robbery murder of one-time Mexican missionary Hugo Solano.
According to the Houston Chronicle, although Garcia's lawyers fought to save him by asserting that he was mentally impaired, and thus ineligible for execution, and that the punishment phase of his trial was tainted by a psychologist's racially tinged testimony, state and federal courts declined to act in his favor. Garcia's last hope ended when the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles voted 5-2 not to recommend clemency.
Garcia, 35, administered a massive dose of sodium pentobarbital, was the 11th Texas killer executed this year. Three others currently are scheduled to be put to death by year's end.
Solano, 36, the father of two young children, was shot four times in the head and neck on Sept. 17, 1998 as he was accosted in an apartment complex parking lot in the 17000 block of Cali by Garcia and three other men. He was robbed of $8.
Lynn Hardaway, chief of the Harris County District Attorney's Post-Conviction Writ Division, said the robbery was part of a crime spree, which included nine additional aggravated robberies and the shooting of two other individuals.
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