Having spent the last 17 years on death row, Coy Wesbrook has a date with the executioner tonight. The Texas inmate is scheduled to die for killing five people, including former wife Gloria jean Coons, in a 1997 shooting rampage just outside Houston, Texas.
In a related Inquisitr report, Georgia murderer Travis Hittson was executed last month for the death of friend and fellow sailor Conway Utterbeck.
Coy Wayne Wesbrook, 58, has no appeals left and is pretty certain the Texas execution will happen this evening.
“I’m sorry it happened. But, I’m not going to sit here and boohoo about it. I’ve had 18 years to get ready for this.”
On the cool evening of November 13, 1997, Wesbrook was in a good mood on his way to meet ex-wife Gloria Jean Coons. According to Wesbrook’s testimony at trial, he thought their meeting at her Channelview apartment was a chance to rekindle the broken marriage.
However, when Wesbrook arrived, Ms. Coons was not alone as expected. His former wife was drinking with roommate Ruth Money and two other men, Anthony Rogers and Kelly Hazlip.
Wesbrook decided to stay nonetheless. Later in the night, however, the situation became more uncomfortable.
Coons and Hazlip went into a bedroom and shortly thereafter, Rogers followed. Finally, the ex-wife re-appeared and told Wesbrook that she had performed oral sex on Rogers and that Hazlip was about to have his turn.
During his 1998 trial, Wesbrook described his disbelief.
“It awes me. It just flat – just flat awes me. I mean, I just couldn’t get over what was going on in front of me.”
At this point in the night, the former security guard felt humiliated and tried to leave but was stopped by another man, Antonio Cruz. This third man had arrived at the apartment sometime after Wesbrook initially showed up.
It was then that Wesbrook “lost it.” He grabbed a .36-caliber hunting rifle from his truck, walked back in, and started shooting up the place. According to court records, Wesbrook fatally shot the five people at close range in less than a minute.
In a recent interview from inside prison, Wesbrook explained how he was taught to handle the situation.
“You hear all your life if you catch your old lady in bed with somebody, don’t just shoot her but shoot her lover too. In her case, there was a bunch of lovers. I just took care of my business.”
Wesbrook did not flee the scene but instead patiently waited by his truck for police to arrive.
“If I could change things and turn back time and bring all these people back and I could be in my right mind and not under the influence of any alcohol, none of this would have taken place,” he later said.
At trial, the prosecution successfully argued that Wesbrook had a plan to kill Coons before he even showed up at the apartment. They contended the wounds and positioning of the victims didn’t match Wesbrook’s description of events that night.
For the murders of Gloria Jean Coons and Anthony Cruz, Wesbrook was convicted and sentenced to death in 1998. On two occasions, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals requested the trial court to reexamine the Texas prisoner’s claims of diminished mental abilities.
After review, the trial court could not find enough evidence to support the claims, so the Court of Criminal Appeals sustained the conviction and sentence. Don Vernay, Wesbrook’s attorney, says the court’s decision is wrong, as his client meets the criteria for mental impairment and is ineligible for the death penalty.
“This execution should not happen, but it’s Texas, man,” Vernay said.
Death row inmate Coy Wayne Wesbrook will be the fourth person this year to be executed in Texas by lethal injection, and two more are scheduled for later this month. In a 7-0 vote earlier this week, the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles rejected a petition for clemency.
[Photo by Joe Raedle/Newsmakers]