Inmate executed for prison guard’s death
HUNTSVILLE, Texas — A Texas inmate convicted in the death of a prison guard was put to death Thursday after the U.S. Supreme Court rejected his lawyer’s attempts to halt the execution.
Robert Pruett was given a lethal injection for the December 1999 death of corrections officer Daniel Nagle at a prison southeast of San Antonio. Nagle was repeatedly stabbed with a tapewrapped metal rod, though an autopsy showed he died from a heart attack that the assault caused.
Prosecutors have said the attack stemmed from a dispute over a peanut butter sandwich that Pruett wanted to take into a recreation yard against prison rules.
In his final statement before being put to death, the 38-year-old Pruett said he hurt a lot of people and a lot of people hurt him. He said he was sorry and held no grudges.
“I’ve had to learn lessons in life the hard way,” he said. “One day there won’t be a need to hurt people.”
He told his friends who were watching the execution through a window that he loved them. “I’m ready to go,” Pruett said. “Nighty night. I’m done, warden.”
As the lethal dose of the powerful sedative pentobarbital began to flow, he started chanting: “Love. Light. It’s forever.”