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Texas executes man for murder during robbery

July 17, 2013 at 12:24 AM

HUNTSVILLE, Texas, July 17 (UPI) -- A convicted burglar who killed a retired sheriff's deputy shortly after being released from prison in 2002 was executed Tuesday in Texas.

John Manuel Quintanilla, 36, was put to death by lethal injection in the state prison in Huntsville, KWTX-TV reported. The U.S. Supreme Court rejected two last-ditch appeals by Quintanilla's lawyers, including arguments he made a coerced confession.

Quintanilla was the 501st inmate to be executed in Texas since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on the death penalty in the 1970s and the first of two scheduled this week. Vaughn Ross, 41, is scheduled to die Thursday.

In 2002, Quintanilla held up a game parlor in Victoria, Texas, about halfway between Houston and Corpus Christi, shortly after his release from prison. He was convicted of killing Victor Billings, 60, a retired sheriff's deputy who was at the game parlor with his wife.

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