Friday, July 22, 2011
Racist Killer Was Executed In Texas
Authorities in Texas executed a racist killer who went on an anti-Muslim shooting rampage following the 9/11 attacks after pleas by one of his victims for his life to be spared were rejected.
Mark Stroman, 41, was pronounced dead late Wednesday from a lethal injection administered at a jail in Huntsville, Texas, a decade on from a shooting spree which left two people dead and seriously wounded a third victim, Rais Bhuiyan.
"I am at peace," said Stroman in his final statement. "Hate is going on in this world and it has to stop. Hate causes a lifetime of pain. Even though I lay here I am still at peace."
The execution was carried out at at 8:53 pm (0153 GMT Thursday) after a request by Bhuiyan for a stay of execution was denied by a judge.
Stroman's attorney, Lydia Brandt, told the final court appeal that Stroman became "emotionally overwhelmed" after the al Qaeda attacks on September 11, 2001, fed by a pain that was quickly replaced by "rage." "He became obsessed with 'fighting back' against the Muslims who attacked America," said Brandt.
But according to Brandt, Stroman "would not know the difference between a Sikh and a Muslim, or between Arabic and Urdu."
Four days after the attacks, Stroman killed his first victim in Dallas: Waqar Hasan was a Pakistani Muslim, and Stroman shot him without asking any questions. Hasan died instantly.
On September 21, Stroman pulled up at a gas station where Bhuiyan was working in the Dallas area and shot him in the face. Bhuiyan survived but only after losing the use of one eye.
The third and final victim of Stroman's rampage was Vasudev Patel, a Hindu. It is for Patel's death that Stroman was sentenced to capital punishment in April 2002.
During his sentencing, according to images shown on CBS, Stroman brandished an American flag and claimed his affiliation with the Aryan Brotherhood, a group of white supremacists.