"As Texas nears 500th execution, ex-warden reflects on prison system," is the Los Angeles Times report by Molly Hennessy-Fiske.
Next week, Texas is scheduled to execute its 500th prisoner since the death penalty was reinstated in 1976. Barring stays or reprieves, the 500th execution is due to occur Wednesday — and the inmate is a woman.Kimberly McCarthy, 52, a former occupational therapist, was convicted and sentenced to death in 1998 in connection with the beating and stabbing death of her 71-year-old neighbor during a robbery. She was originally scheduled to be put to death Jan. 29, but received a stay until April, and then saw her execution postponed again. Her attorneys recently appealed again to halt the execution, but there has been no decision yet.
McCarthy would be the 13th woman executed in the U.S. and the fourth in Texas since the Supreme Court allowed capital punishment to resume in 1976. During that time, more than 1,300 men have been executed nationwide.
Texas has enforced the death penalty more regularly than any other state, executing more people than the next six states combined (Virginia, Oklahoma, Florida, Missouri, Alabama and Georgia).
To learn more about the history of executions in Texas, which are carried out at the Walls Unit at Huntsville Prison, about 70 miles north of Houston, we talked to the director at the local Texas Prison Museum, Jim Willett, a former warden.
Earlier coverage of the sceheduled execution begins at the link.