A man who was being sought for a neighbor's slaying when he killed a Dallas police officer outside a club was executed yesterday, the Associated Press reports. Licho Escamilla, 33, was put to death for the fatal 2001 shooting of Christopher Kevin James, 34, who was trying to break up a brawl involving Escamilla. He was the 24th killer executed this year in the U.S.; Texas has accounted for 12 of the executions.
Escamilla looked at the slain officer's daughter, who was seated a few feet away watching through a window, and told her: “God bless your heart.” He turned to his own relatives, who were in a separate witness space but could see him through the same glass, and said he loved them and all his supporters. “Pope Francis, God's children has asked the state of Texas to switch my death sentence to life in prison,” he said. “But the state of Texas has refused to listen to God's children. They will have to take that up with God,” he added. “Let everyone know it's not over.” The U.S. Supreme Court refused to review Escamilla's case and no additional appeals were filed. The Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles on Monday decided against a reprieve and clemency. “It's been a long time waiting for justice to be served,” said Kevin Janse, a James family spokesman.