TEXAS – A death row inmate was executed Wednesday for fatally stabbing an 89-year-old woman and her daughter 16 years ago. After entering their Fort Worth home under the pretense of doing some work for them.
Billy Jack Crutsinger, 64, received execution by lethal injection Wednesday evening at Huntsville state penitentiary.
For killing 89 year-old Pearl Magouirk and her 71-year-old daughter Patricia Syren.
Authorities say Crutsinger killed the two women and stole Syren’s car and credit card. Crutsinger was arrested three days later at a bar in Galveston, more than 300 miles away.
In a final statement that lasted four minutes, Crutsinger thanked three friends who witnessed his execution.
“I’m at peace now and ready to go and be with Jesus and my family,” Crutsinger said.
Then as the lethal dose of pentobarbital began, he said he could feel it “in my left arm. It’s kind of burning.”
Crutsinger then began coughing and breathing heavily and then made snoring noises before dying.
No family members of Magouirk and Syren witnessed the execution. Crutsinger did not mention the two women during his final statement before his execution.
The loss of mother and daughter Pearl Magouirk and Pat Syren is still felt deeply by their family and the Fort Worth community.
Our sympathy and thoughts continue to be with them,” Michele Hartmann, a prosecutors with Criminal District Attorney’s Office who convicted Crutsinger said.
Texas the Execution Capitol of the United Stated
Crutsinger was the 14th inmate executed this year in the U.S. and the fifth in Texas. The United States busiest capital punishment state. Ten more executions are scheduled in Texas this year.
The U.S. Supreme Court declined a request by Crutsinger’s attorney to stop the execution. Crutsinger’s attorney had alleged his previous lawyer had a long history of incompetent work in death penalty cases.
His lawyer also argued lower courts had wrongly denied Crutsinger funding to investigate competency and mental health claims.
Lower appeals courts and the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles had also declined to stop the execution.
At trial, Hartmann told jurors Crutsinger’s actions had nothing to do with alcohol but were the result of “evil.”
Friends and family described Magouirk, known as “R.D.,” as an avid gardener. Syren volunteered as a receptionist at her church.
When Crutsinger realized Magouirk and Syren didn’t have enough work to give him he flew into an alcoholic rage.
Crutsinger stabbed Magouirk seven times while stabbing her daughter nine times.
In 2018, the State of Texas put 13 people to death, accounting for more than half of the 25 U.S. executions last year.
Texas is responsible for three of the ten executions nationwide to date in 2019.