A HEARTLESS murderer executed by lethal injection in Texas last night chose as his final words: “That’ll be five dollars”.
Billie Wayne Coble, 70, was sentenced to death for the murder of his estranged wife’s parents and her police officer brother.
AP:Associated Press Billie Wayne Coble, 70, said: ‘That’ll be five dollars’ moments before he was put to death in Texas
He spent nearly 30 years on death row since the August 1989 shootings of Robert and Zelda Vicha and their son Bobby in Axtell, northeast of Waco.
Coble – who has never repented for the slayings – was once described by a prosecutor as having “a heart full of scorpions”.
He last night became the oldest inmate executed by Texas since the state resumed carrying out capital punishment in 1982.
The oldest in the US is serial bomber Walter Moody – who was put to death last year in Alabama at the age of 83.
Asked to make a final statement at the state penitentiary in Huntsville, Coble replied: “That’ll be five dollars.”
The Vietnam War veteran and electrician said: “Yes sir, that will be five dollars. I love you, I love you and I love you.
“Mike, I love you. Where’s Nelley at? I love you, that will be five dollars. Take care.”
He gasped several times and then began snoring.FIGHT IN DEATH CHAMBER
But in dramatic scenes, Coble’s Gordon, grandson Dalton and Coble’s daughter-in-law became emotional and violent.
They began yelling obscenities, throwing fists and kicking at others in the death chamber witness area as Coble was executed.
They were eventually moved to a courtyard by officers and the two men were handcuffed.
While the witnesses were being subdued outside, the single dose of fatal pentobarbital was being administered to Coble.
He was pronounced dead 11 minutes later at 6:24pm local time (12:24am Friday GMT).
Texas Department of Criminal Justice spokesman Jeremy Desel said the two men were arrested on a charge of resisting arrest and taken to the Walker County Jail.
This is the end of a horror story for the Vicha familyBarry JohnsonMcLennan County District Attorney
The US Supreme Court earlier turned down Coble’s request to delay his execution.
Coble was the third inmate put to death this year in the US and the second in Texas – the country’s busiest capital punishment state.
McLennan County District Attorney Barry Johnson said: “This is the end of a horror story for the Vicha family.”
J.R. Vicha, Bobby Vicha’s son, said it would be a relief knowing the execution finally took place after years of delays.
But he added: “Still, the way they do it is more humane than what he did to my family.
“It’s not what he deserves but it will be good to know we got as much justice as allowed by the law”.KIDNAP AND MURDER
Prosecutors said Coble, distraught over his pending divorce, kidnapped his wife, Karen Vicha.
He was arrested and later freed on bond.
Nine days after the kidnapping Coble went to Karen Vicha’s home, where he handcuffed and tied up her three daughters and J.R. Vicha.
He then went to the homes of Robert and Zelda Vicha, 64 and 60 respectively, and Bobby Vicha, 39, who lived nearby, and fatally shot them.
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After Karen Vicha returned home, Coble abducted her and drove off, assaulting her and threatening to rape and kill her.
He was arrested after crashing following a police chase.
Coble was convicted of capital murder in 1990.
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