Juan Castillo, 37, was put to death Wednesday evening for the 2003 robbery and murder of Tommy Garcia Jr. in San Antonio. The execution had been postponed three times since last May. It was the 11th execution in the U.S. this year.
Juan Castillo, 37, was put to death Wednesday evening for the 2003 robbery and murder of Tommy Garcia Jr. in San Antonio. The execution had been postponed three times since last May, including a rescheduling because of Hurricane Harvey, the Texas Tribune reports. Castillo’s advocates and attorneys had insisted on his innocence, pleading unsuccessfully for a last-minute 30-day stay of execution from Gov. Greg Abbott after his appeals were rejected in the courts. The Texas Defender Service, a capital defense group who had recently picked up Castillo’s case, asked for the delay to let its lawyers investigate claims they said discredited the prosecution’s evidence, including recanted statements and video of police interrogations that contradict testimony at trial.
With no action from the governor, Castillo was taken into the death chamber and injected with a lethal dose of pentobarbital. Prosecutors said Castillo and three others lured Garcia to a secluded area in 2003 to rob him by promising him sex with one of Castillo’s female accomplices. When Garcia tried to run, Castillo shot him. He was convicted and sentenced to death in 2005. Castillo became the sixth person executed in Texas this year and the 11th in the U.S.