In May, 2001, Russeau beat 75-year-old James Syvertson to death in Tyler, Texas.
Russeau was arrested driving Syvertson's car.
Unlike the murders of nine black people in Charleston, South Carolina this week, the murder didn't attract national media attention, was not exploited to exacerbate racial hatred, nor did the governor hold a news conference to declare the heart and soul of Texas had been broken.
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Texas death row inmate Gregory Russeau was executed Thursday evening for the slaying of a 75-year-old auto repair shop owner 14 years ago during a crack cocaine binge.
Russeau, 45, from Tyler, became the nation's 17th convicted killer to receive a lethal injection this year and the ninth in Texas.
The U.S. Supreme Court last October refused to review his case, and no additional appeals have been filed for him in the courts. In a 7-0 vote this week, the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles rejected a clemency petition for Russeau.
Asked by a warden if he had a final statement, Russeau thanked his family and friends for what they had done for him and thanked three friends who were witnesses "for being here with me so I do not have to transition alone."
"I'm at peace, I'm good," he said. "I'm ready to go home."
He began snoring as the lethal dose of pentobarbital began and all movement stopped within about a minute.
He was pronounced dead at 6:49 p.m. CDT, 21 minutes later.
Russeau was convicted and sentenced to die for the May 2001 fatal beating of James Syvertson, who was attacked, robbed and whose car was stolen from his shop in Tyler, Texas.
About eight hours after Syvertson's body was found by relatives, police arrested Russeau about 35 miles away in Longview outside a known drug house.
"He happened to be driving the victim's car when they stopped him," Donald Vernay, Russeau's appeals lawyer, said last week. "That, in particular, was a problem."
Image credit: nbcnews.com ####
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