December 18, 2019
A powerful and moving final statement.
There can be no doubt that this colored gentleman is truly sorry for what he did.
A Texas inmate was executed by lethal injection Wednesday evening for killing a supervisor at a state prison shoe factory in Amarillo nearly 17 years ago.
Travis Runnels, 46, was convicted of slashing the throat of 38-year-old Stanley Wiley on Jan. 29, 2003. Runnels was executed at the state penitentiary in Huntsville.
Prosecutors say Runnels killed Wiley at the Texas Department of Criminal Justice Clements Unit in Amarillo because he didn’t like working as a janitor at the shoe factory. They said Runnels had wanted to transfer to a job at the prison barbershop and was angry at Wiley because that hadn’t happened.
Runnels, belted to the death chamber gurney, responded “No” when the warden asked if he had a final statement. As the lethal dose of the powerful sedative pentobarbital began, he smiled and mouthed words and a kiss toward three female friends and two of his attorneys who watched through a window a few feet from him. Then he blurted out “Woof, woof!” just before taking four quick breaths and snoring four times before all movement stopped.
Runnels was pronounced dead at 7:26 p.m. CST, 22 minutes after the drug began flowing into his arms, making him the 22nd inmate put to death this year in the US and the ninth in Texas.