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Texas Executes Larry Swearingen After 19 Years On Death Row And 5 Previous Appeals

The Walls Unit in Huntsville where death row inmates are executed.
Jack Morgan | Texas Public Radio
The Walls Unit in Huntsville where death row inmates are executed.

Texas death row inmate Larry Swearingen was executed Wednesday evening for the 1998 murder of Melissa Trotter. She was a 19-year-old student at Lone Star College on the Montgomery County campus.

Swearingen, 48, said his conviction was based on junk science. During his 19 years on death row, he was given five execution dates that were stalled from appeals.

He continuously insisted on his innocence — even until his final words. He said he hoped his death could be used to change the "insane" legal system of Texas. 

"Lord, forgive them for they don't know what they're doing," Swearingen said from a gurney before he died. 

So far in 2019, he is the fourth inmate executed in Texas and the 12th in the U.S.

Read more about Larry Swearingen’s case here:

The Role Of Scientific Forensic Evidence Questioned In Pending Texas Execution

How 'Body Ranch' Research Impacts The Appeal Of A Texas Death Row Inmate

After 19 Years On Death Row, Could Time Be Up For Larry Swearingen?

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