TEXAS (USA): MAN EXECUTED FOR 1994 KILLING
January 26, 2012: Rodrigo Hernandez, 38, hispanic, was executed.
Hernandez was sentenced to death on March 22, 2004 for the February 1994 rape and slaying of Susan Verstegen, 25.
The slaying went unsolved for 8 years until Hernandez, as a requirement for parole from a Michigan prison, had to submit a DNA sample that went into a national database.
The DNA linked him to her death. Advances in DNA technology 2 years ago also tied Hernandez to the 1991 slaying of a 77-year-old homeless woman, Muriel Stoepker, in Michigan.
He was not tried for her death. Hernandez insisted he was innocent of both slayings.
Hernandez becomes the 1st condemned inmate to be put to death this year in Texas and the 478th overall since the state resumed capital punishment on December 7, 1987.
He becomes the 239th inmate to be put to death since Rick Perry governor of Texas in 2011; Perry has now been governor for exactly 1/2 of all executions in Texas in the modern era, since the death penalty was re-legalized on July 2, 1976.
Hernandez becomes the 2nd condemned inmate to be put to death this year in the USA and the 1279th overall since the nation resumed executions on January 17, 1977. (Sources: Associated Press & Rick Halperin, 26/01/2012)