Texas today executed the 470th person since 1982; sixth in 2011 and 231st under Governor Rick Perry.

From the Houston Chronicle: 

Milton Mathis was executed Tuesday evening for fatally shooting two people inside a Houston crack house in 1998, becoming the sixth death row inmate executed in Texas this year.
The lethal injection was carried out shortly after the U.S. Supreme Court rejected appeals from his defense attorneys, who argued that Mathis was mentally impaired and therefore ineligible for execution.
Mathis, 32, was condemned for a shooting spree that killed Travis Brown III, 24, and Daniel Hibbard, 31, less than two weeks before Christmas in 1998. A 15-year-old girl, Melony Almaguer, also was shot and left paralyzed.
Almaguer, seated in a wheelchair and accompanied by her husband, was among a small group of people who watched Mathis die from behind a window at the Huntsville Unit of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.
“I never meant to hurt you,” Mathis, strapped to a gurney with tubing taped to his arms, told Almaguer. “You were just at the wrong place at the wrong time.”
Her husband stood with his hand on her shoulder and at one point brushed her face with his hand. They declined to speak with reporters after leaving the prison.
Mathis thanked his friends and relatives, and asked for mercy for himself and “these people carrying out this mass slaughter.”
“The system has failed me,” he said. “This is what you call a miscarriage of justice. Life is not supposed to end this way … I just ask the Lord, when I knock at the gates, you just let me in.”
He yawned and gasped, then began snoring as the lethal drugs began taking effect. Nine minutes later, at 6:53 p.m. CDT, he was pronounced dead.
An unsuccessful late appeal to the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals briefly delayed the punishment.
In their appeal filed Monday with the Supreme Court, his attorneys also argued that Mathis’ claims of mental impairment hadn’t been reviewed by any federal court because of a “procedural quagmire” and “freakish coincidence” of state and federal legal issues involving the timing of his appeals. Attorney Lee Kovarsky also argued that if Mathis was executed, he likely would have the lowest IQ of any Texas inmate put to death since the Supreme Court nine years ago barred execution of the mentally impaired.

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