A man identified as Arthur Brown Jr has now been executed after he was handed the death penalty for the June 1992 murder of 4 persons in a Houston home including a pregnant 19-year-old woman
The 52-year-old who carried out the drug-related murders, was part of a ring that shuttled drugs from Texas to Alabama and had bought drugs from Jose Tovar and his wife, Rachel.
He was executed after being convicted of killing 32-year-old Jose Tovar; his wife’s 17-year-old son, Frank Farias; 19-year-old Jessica Quinones, the pregnant girlfriend of another son of Rachel Tovar, and 21-year-old neighbour Audrey Brown.
His victims were tied up and shot in the head. Rachel Tovar and another person were also shot but survived. Jessica Quinones had been nine-months pregnant and had named her unborn daughter Alyssa.
About three hours before Brown’s scheduled Thursday evening execution at the state penitentiary in Huntsville, Texas, the U.S. Supreme Court declined an appeal from his lawyers. The U.S high court had prohibited the death penalty for the intellectually disabled.
However Josh Reiss, chief of the Post-Conviction Writs Division with the Harris County District Attorney’s Office in Houston, called Brown’s last-minute appeals a delay tactic.
Reiss said school records submitted at Brown’s trial showed while the inmate was initially thought to possibly be intellectually disabled in the third grade, by ninth grade that was no longer the case.
The prosecutor also said Brown’s claims of innocence are problematic as the other suspect alleged to be the killer was found by investigators to not have been in Houston at the time.