execution date

TEXAS EXECUTION UPDATE Ramiro Felix Gonzales execution rescheduled


April 12, 2021

Ramiro Felix Gonzales was scheduled to be executed at 6 pm local time, on Tuesday, April 20, 2021, at the Walls Unit of the Huntsville State Penitentiary in Huntsville, Texas. His execution has been rescheduled to November 17, 2021.  Thirty-eight-year-old Ramiro is convicted of the murder of 19-year-old Bridget Townsend on January 15, 2001, in Bandera, Texas.  Ramiro has spent the last 14 years on Texas’ death row.

While pregnant with him, Ramiro’s mother allegedly used drugs and then abandoned him after his birth. Ramiro was primarily raised by his grandmother and was allegedly sexually abused by a male relative. He dropped out of school after the seventh grade and was using drugs and alcohol regularly by the age of 12. Prior to his arrest, he worked as a welder and a fence builder.

In 2003, Ramiro Gonzales was in Bandera County jail awaiting transport to a prison, after being convicted of abducting and raping a woman. While waiting, Gonzales asked to speak with Sheriff James MacMillian. Gonzales told the Sheriff that he had information about Bridget Townsend, a teenager who had disappeared two years earlier. Initially, the Sheriff did not believe Gonzales, but when Gonzales offered to take the Sheriff to the location of Bridget’s body, the Sheriff became interested.

Sitting in the passenger seat, Gonzales directed the Sheriff to a ranch where Gonzales lived with his family, but they did not stop at the ranch. They continued driving over jeep trails to a remote cedar-covered hillside. Gonzales, the Sheriff, and a jail administrator exited the vehicle. During the 100 yard walk to Bridgett’s remains, Gonzales described the jewelry she had been wearing, wear she had been standing when he shot her, and where he had put the body. A human skull, along with other bones, were found close to the location where Gonzales claimed to have shot her. The bones had been slightly scattered by wildlife.

During the drive back to the jail, Gonzales gave conflicting stories about the night when Bridget was shot. Initially, Gonzales blamed the Mexican Mafia and Bridget’s boyfriend, Joe Leal, saying they hired him. Then he claimed that he and Joe had agreed to kill Bridget. The conflicting stories continued once they returned to the jail. Finally, Gonzales confessed that all his previous stories were lies and that he was solely responsible for Bridget’s death. This version, for which he gave a signed confession, matched the evidence that was discovered during the investigation.

Joe Leal had been Gonzales’ drug dealer. On January 14, 2001, Gonzales had phoned Joe’s house to obtain more drugs. Bridget answered the phone, saying Joe was at work. Gonzales, knowing Bridget was at the house, decided to drive over and steal some cocaine. Gonzales pushed his way past Bridget after she answered the door. He continued to ignore Bridget while her stole between $150 and $500 in cash.

When Bridget began calling Joe, Gonzales dragged her into a bedroom and tied her up. He asked if Joe had any drugs in the house. When she responded negatively, he took her out to this truck, pausing to turn out the lights so that they would not be spotted. Gonzales drove back to the ranch, stopping to pick up his grandfather’s .243 caliber deer rifle.

Gonzales confessed that he had planned to shoot Bridget so that no one would know he had robbed Joe, nor that he had kidnapped Bridget. Gonzales drove Bridget to the spot where her remains were later found. Gonzales forced Bridget to walk towards the brush as he began loading the rifle. Bridget promised money, drugs, or sex if Gonzales would spare her life. Gonzales unloaded the weapon, and took her back to the truck to assault her; after which, he, again, took her into the brush and shot her.

Gonzales then returned home and interacted with his family as though nothing was wrong. He had returned to the weapon to where he retrieved it and flung the empty shell casing away from the house. Gonzales also denied, multiple times, seeing Bridget that night or visiting Joe’s house.

During Gonzales’ trial, a women who he had kidnapped and raped, testified that she believed she would have been killed if she had not managed to escape.

This is not Ramiro Gonzales’ first scheduled execution date. He has had at least two previous executions dates that were stayed for unknown reasons.  According to the online execution calendar provided by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, Ramiro’s execution date has been rescheduled.  No reason has been provided for the date change.

Please pray for peace and healing for the family of Bridget. Please pray for strength for the family of Ramiro. Pleas pray that if Ramiro is innocent, lacks the competency to be executed, or should not be executed for any other reason that evidence will be presented prior to his execution. Please pray that Ramiro will come to find peace through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, if he has not already found one.

LOUISIANA – Child killer’s formal death sentencing set May 28 – Brian Horn


april 9, 2014

MANSFIELD — Recently convicted child killer Brian Horn will be formally sentenced to death at 9 a.m. May 28.

District Judge Robert Burgess set the sentencing date Wednesday. It falls a few days after the 45-day window he initially envisioned Saturday after a jury voted unanimously to sentence Horn to death.

Even though the sentence is a given because of the jury vote, Burgess said he is required by the Louisiana Supreme Court to prepare a uniform capital sentence report. It likely will be dozens of pages in length to give a comprehensive overview of Horn and aspects of his trial.

For example, the report will include information such as the makeup of Horn’s family, his education level, any expert witnesses who testified at the penalty phase, work history, criminal history, details of the crime and victim, acknowledgment of the defense counsel and their years of experience and general information about the trial, including jury selection.

Also added will be a listing of previous first-degree murder cases, not restricted to capital cases, on dockets of the 42nd Judicial District, formerly the 11th Judicial District.

“It is a lot of work. It not only includes the name of the case but the facts of the case,” Burgess said.

Additionally, the sentencing order requires the Louisiana Department of Public Safety and Corrections’ Division of Probation and Parole to perform a complete capital sentence investigation report, with that information attached to Burgess’ report.

Horn, 37, of Keachi was convicted April 2 of first-degree murder in the March 30, 2010 death of Justin M. Bloxom, 12, of Stonewall. The twice-convicted sex offender used text messages, portraying himself as a teenage girl, to lure Bloxom away from a friend’s home.

Horn picked up Bloxom in his Action Taxi cab. He ran out of gas on U.S. Highway 171 near Stonewall’s southern limits. And that’s where he smothered Bloxom to death, leaving his body in a small depression of water across the highway fence row.

Horn’s defense team conceded his guilt from the start. However, they contended Bloxom’s death was accidental so they asked for a lesser sentence – one that would have sent Horn to prison for life.

The jury of East Baton Rouge Parish residents took less than an hour to convict Horn after listening to three and a half days of testimony. That moved the trial into the penalty phase, and after two and a half days of additional testimony, the same jury again was again on the same page in deciding Horn should die for the crime.

During the penalty phase, members of Bloxom’s family were able to express to the jury how devastating his death has been for them. At the sentencing, family members will be able to address Horn directly.

TENNESSEE- Execution date set for inmate on death row since 1978 – Donald Wayne


april 9, 2014

Tennessee wants to execute death row’s longest-standing resident.

Donald Wayne Strouth, 55, has been on death row since 1978 for the murder of a second-hand store owner in Kingsport. He’s accused of knocking out and slashing the throat of Jimmy Keegan in a robbery, leaving his body behind in his store, where his wife later found him.

Strouth, who was known to carry a hawkbill knife, was seen by witnesses afterward with blood still on his hands.

He outlived the man who was convicted alongside him, Jeffrey Dicks. Dicks, like most death row inmates over the past decade or so, died not by execution but by natural causes when he suffered a heart attack in 1999.

But Tuesday, Tennessee’s Supreme Court set a date for Strouth’s execution: March 15, 2016.

It may seem far off, but the justices built in time for an ongoing lawsuit dealing with the secrecy of Tennessee’s death penalty to run its course. Eleven death row inmates are suing the state to turn over details about how it plans to perform its lethal injection, trying to overcome a 2013 law that sealed many of those details behind a veil of secrecy. They argue that if they don’t know what the state is using to kill them and where it came from, there’s no way to know whether the execution meets constitutional safeguards against “cruel and unusual punishment.”

That lawsuit, which is ongoing, has pushed back at least one execution date.

Strouth has argued that he suffers from brain damage and mental illness, but the state’s Supreme Court was unswayed.

He is at least the 10th death row inmate to have an execution date. Billy Ray Irick, who raped and murdered a 7-year-old Knoxville girl in 1985, is scheduled to die first, on Oct. 7. The state is awaiting an execution date for an 11th inmate.

Tennessee has not executed a prisoner since 2009.

Tennessee sets execution dates for 10 men


february 6, 2014

The state of Tennessee plans to execute 10 death row inmates over the next two years after changing the drug protocol to be used in lethal injections, officials said Wednesday.

The state is scheduled to execute the condemned prisoners between April 22, 2014, and Nov. 17, 2015, the Tennessee Administrative Office of the Courts confirmed. Three executions are scheduled this year and seven in 2015.

Gov. Bill Haslam, noting that three execution orders were handed down Friday by the state Supreme Court, told The Tennessean Wednesday that the decision to seek the executions didn’t go through him. But he said he agrees with it.

State officials asked the Tennessee Supreme Court in October for execution dates for 10 inmates, the highest number of condemned people the state has ever sought to kill at one time. The court has since ordered execution dates for nine of those men. Another inmate, Nickolus Johnson, whose execution was sought separately from the other 10, is scheduled to die April 22.

Dates have not yet been set for Lee Hall, the other man in the October group, or Donald Wayne Strouth, for whom the state requested an execution date in December.

Kelley Henry, who supervises capital punishment defense cases with the Federal Public Defender’s Office in Nashville, said it was unfortunate that so many death row inmates were being grouped together. Henry and other attorneys have asked a Davidson County judge to halt the executions over questions about the drug the state now plans to use.

“Each and every one of these cases has a story that is an example of how the death penalty system in Tennessee is broken,” she said Wednesday. “They each have different stories of ineffective counsel, of evidence that was suppressed by the state, stories of trauma and mental abuse that were never presented to a jury or a judge.”

(Source: The Tennessean)