Texas inmate executed for killing police officer in chase
Aug. 12, 2015
HUNTSVILLE, Texas (AP) — The latest on the scheduled execution of Texas inmate Daniel Lee Lopez (all times local):
Texas inmate Daniel Lee Lopez has been put to death for killing a police lieutenant with an SUV during a chase more than six years ago.
Lopez's lethal injection Wednesday evening was carried out after the U.S. Supreme Court rejected appeals from his attorneys. They disregarded both his desire to die and lower court rulings that Lopez was competent to make that decision.
The 27-year-old was convicted of killing Corpus Christi Lt. Stuart Alexander in March 2009. Alexander was standing in a grassy area on the side of a highway where he had laid down spike strips to try to stop Lopez, who was fleeing from other officers.
Lopez swerved and struck Alexander, killing him.
His execution is the 10th this year in Texas, the most of any state.
The U.S. Supreme Court has refused to block the execution of a Texas inmate who ordered his appeals dropped so he could be put to death more quickly.
Attorneys for Daniel Lopez asked the justices to halt his scheduled Wednesday evening execution despite lower court rulings that found him competent to decide to end appeals.
The attorneys argued Lopez's mental illness was responsible for him trying to use the legal system for suicide.
The high court disagreed, rejecting the appeal about five hours before Lopez could be taken to the death chamber. State attorneys had opposed any delay.
The 27-year-old faces lethal injection for the 2009 death of Corpus Christi Police Lt. Stuart Alexander, who was run down by Lopez's SUV during a police chase.