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Texas Executes A Former Suburban Houston Cop, Robert Fratta, Who Hired Assassins To Kill His Wife.

Robert Fratta
theguardian

Texas hanged a former police officer who paid two persons to murder his wife over 30 years ago during a contentious divorce. Robert Fratta, 65, was pronounced dead at the Huntsville State Penitentiary on Tuesday at 7:49 p.m. after receiving a lethal injection. Fratta, a former suburban Houston police officer, was convicted of murder-for-hire after prosecutors claimed he recruited an intermediary, Joseph Prystash, to hire the gunman, Howard Guidry. Farah Fratta, 33, died in November 1994 after being shot twice in the head inside her garage in Atascocita, Texas.

Who is Robert Fratta?

Robert Fratta, 65, was executed by lethal injection at the state jail in Huntsville for the fatal shooting of his wife, Farah, in November 1994. He died at 7:49 p.m., just 24 minutes after the strong sedative pentobarbital began running into his arms. Fratta’s spiritual adviser, Barry Brown, prayed over him for roughly three minutes before the execution began. He was tied to the death chamber gurney with intravenous needles in each arm. Brown, with his prayer book next to Fratta’s head and his right palm resting on Fratta’s right hand, asks for prayers for “broken hearts… for persons who grieved and those who will grieve in the days ahead.” “Be merciful to Bobby,” he prayed.

Investigation Process:

Prosecutors allege that Fratta orchestrated the murder-for-hire scheme, in which a middleman, Joseph, hired the gunman, Howard Guidry. Guidry shot Farah Fratta, 33, twice in the head in her garage in the Houston neighborhood of Atascocita. Robert Fratta, a Missouri City public safety officer, had long maintained his innocence. The sentence was postponed for less than an hour as the final flurry of final-day appeals was heard by the US Supreme Court, Texas’ highest courts, and the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals. Fratta’s attorneys unsuccessfully argued that prosecutors withheld evidence suggesting a trial witness had been hypnotized by investigators, causing her to revise her initial recollection of seeing two men at the murder scene.

What do the Prosecutors Say?

According to court records, Fratta regularly voiced his wish to see his wife killed and asked many acquaintances if they knew anybody who would kill her, telling one friend, “I’ll simply kill her, and I’ll serve my time, and when I get out,” according to prosecutors. Prystash and Guidry were both sentenced to death for the murder. Fratta was one of four s death row inmates who filed a lawsuit to prevent the state’s prison system from utilising expired and hazardous execution medications. That action was also dismissed late Tuesday. Previously, the Supreme Court and lower courts rejected appeals from Fratta’s lawyers seeking to investigate accusations that inadequate evidence and erroneous jury instructions were used to condemn him.

Robert Fratta Sentenced to Prison:

Fratta was condemned to death for the first time in 1996, but his conviction was overturned by a federal judge who found that confessions from his co-conspirators should not have been accepted as evidence. The judge added in the same finding that “trial evidence revealed Fratta to be egocentric, sexist, and cruel, with a callous wish to murder his wife.”

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