HOUSTON – Danny Paul Bible gave no final statement before being executed Wednesday evening in Huntsville.
Bible was executed for the 1979 murder and rape of Inez Deaton in Houston. Her family didn't attend the execution. However, family members of the three other people Bible murdered did witness Bible’s execution and asked prison officials to read a written statement on their behalf.
“Danny Paul Bible is as vile and evil a person that has ever drawn breath; we're glad to have witnessed him draw his last breath. I know that he will burn in hell for eternity,” read Jeremy Desel, public information officer for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.
Desel said that statement was given by Larry Lance, the brother of Pamela Hudgins. Hudgins, along with Tracy Powers and her 4-month-old son, were murdered on the same day in 1983 in Palo Pinto County. Bible was sentenced to 25 years in prison for Hudgins' murder. Bible was paroled after serving eight years in prison under the now-defunct mandatory release laws. This since-repealed law allowed prisoners to shorten the time they were required to stay in prison by exhibiting good behavior behind bars.
Court records show Bible's crimes spanned two decades and three states. However, it was Deaton’s murder that prompted a jury to give Bible the death penalty. Deaton was stabbed several times with an ice pick and left near a Houston bayou. Her crime remained unsolved for decades. Bible finally started talking in the late 90s after being convicted of raping a woman in Louisiana. He was finally convicted of Deaton's murder in 2003.
A photo of Deaton is below.
Bible's attorneys argued his health was so poor the measures it would take prison officials to find usable veins would constitute cruel and unusual treatment. That appeal failed.
“There was no issue in any way shape or form with obtaining a vein,” Desel said.
A last-minute appeal also argued Bible had ineffective counsel and should have been granted a new punishment trial following a crash in 2003. While Bible was being transported from Harris County to death row, a truck swerved into oncoming traffic and hit the prison transport van head-on. A prison guard was killed and Bible suffered multiple injuries.
In an appeal, Bible’s attorneys wrote that following the crash, “Mr. Bible was unable to walk, requiring assistance with all his activities of daily living, with the only exceptions of self-feeding and turning.”
Bible’s attorneys argued this meant Bible was no longer a continuing threat. Before handing down a death sentence, juries must find, among other points, a person is a continuing danger to others.
However, prison logs provided to KPRC of Bible’s final hours noted him “walking around cell.” Desel said Bible was ambulatory, but a wheelchair did “make it easier to get from point A to point B.”
Shortly after the execution began, Bible murmured that the drugs burned.