HUNTSVILLE - Edward Lewis LaGrone went to his death Wednesday evening insisting
that he did not kill a 10-year-old girl who was pregnant with his child or
her two great-aunts, all of whom were shotgunned in their Fort Worth home
in May 1991.
"I just want to say that I'm not sad today and I'm not bitter at anybody,"
said LaGrone, 46, just moments before the lethal injection was administered.
"As I said from Day One, I didn't kill anybody, but I'm no better than the
people that did. Jesus is Lord."
LaGrone did not acknowledge the four relatives of his victims who watched
his execution in silence. No one witnessed the execution on his behalf.
He was pronounced dead at 6:18 p.m.
In an interview afterward, an aunt and uncle and two cousins of the 10-year-old
victim, ShaKeisha Lloyd, said they wished that LaGrone had expressed remorse
for the killings.
"He could have said he was sorry or something," a tearful Kendra Lloyd said.
"He took my cousin away. We were six months apart. She was my best friend."
Billy Lloyd Sr. said he found solace in the fact that LaGrone appeared to
have found religion on Death Row.
"I had to see it with my own eyes," he said. "I know now that he can't hurt"
LaGrone was the fifth Texas inmate executed this year and the 318th since
1982. On Wednesday, the Supreme Court rejected his final appeal, which asserted
that lethal injection is cruel and unusual punishment.
In 1991, LaGrone, on parole on a murder conviction, was a drug pusher who
had dated ShaKeisha's mother, Pamela Lloyd Tutt, according to court testimony.
Lloyd Tutt noticed that ShaKeisha's abdomen and breasts had grown, and the
girl told her mother that she had been raped by LaGrone.
A doctor confirmed that the fourth-grader was 17 weeks pregnant.
Tests conducted after ShaKeisha's death indicated that LaGrone was the father.
Lloyd Tutt confronted LaGrone and demanded that he pay for an abortion.
She also threatened to file a complaint against LaGrone, whose parole could
have been revoked.
On the morning of May 30, 1991, LaGrone appeared at the family's door with
a shotgun. An uncle, 48-year-old Dempsey Lloyd, was shot twice when he met
LaGrone, but survived. LaGrone killed ShaKeisha, Zenobia Anderson, 83, and
Caola Lloyd, 76, who was blind and had terminal cancer.
Three members of the household were unhurt -- Lloyd Tutt and two of her
children, 13-year-old Charles and Mytyl, 19 months.
In court, all witnesses identified LaGrone as the gunman, and investigators
found that his girlfriend had bought the gun the day before the shooting.
Steve Conder, a Tarrant County assistant district attorney who handled the
case through the appeals process, said the slayings were among the most chilling
in Fort Worth's history.
"If I hadn't worked the case, it would be hard to imagine anything like
this ever happening," Conder said shortly after LaGrone's execution date
The condemned man spent his final day pacing in his cell on Death Row in
the Polunksy Unit in Livingston before being taken to the Walls Unit in Huntsville,
where executions are carried out.
A prison system spokeswoman described his demeanor as "serious, but quiet."
LaGrone requested a final meal of five pieces of fried chicken and two soft
In addition to Kendra Lloyd and Billy Lloyd Sr., the execution was witnessed
by Beverly Lloyd, Billy Lloyd Sr.'s wife; and Billy Lloyd Jr.
Three reporters and several prison officials were also in the death chamber.
Lloyd Tutt did not witness the execution because she is in the fifth year
of a five-year prison sentence for killing her husband, Gene Tutt, in 1997.
The family expressed frustration that it took nearly 14 years for the execution
to be carried out.
"The only thing I have against the death penalty is that it takes too long,"
Lloyd Sr. said.
Tonight, Bobby Ray Hopkins of Johnson County is scheduled to die for the
July 31, 1993, stabbing deaths of Sandi Marbut, 18, and Jennifer Weston, 19.
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