As the lethal injection began taking effect, the Mexican National convicted of the brutal rape and killing of a teenage girl in 1995 shouted, “Viva Mexico!” just before he died at a Texas prison.
Efforts by Humberto Leal’s attorneys to halt the execution fell short, with the U.S. Supreme Court turning back a stay request and Texas Gov. Rick Perry refusing to grant a pardon. He was pronounced dead at 6:21 p.m. local time.
In his last minutes, Leal repeatedly said he was sorry and accepted responsibility.
“I have hurt a lot of people. . . . I take full blame for everything. I am sorry for what I did,” he said in the death chamber.
“One more thing,” he said as the drugs began taking effect. Then he shouted twice, “Viva Mexico!” at a Texas prison.
Leal, who moved to the U.S. as a toddler, contended police never told him he could seek legal assistance from the Mexican government under the treaty–and that such assistance would have helped his defense.
Details of the murder were particularly gruesome.
Adria Sauceda, 16, his victim, was found naked by authorities, according to court documents.
“There was a 30- to 40-pound asphalt rock roughly twice the size of the victim’s skull lying partially on the victim’s left arm,” court documents read. “Blood was underneath this rock. A smaller rock with blood on it was located near the victim’s right thigh.”
A “bloody and broken” stick roughly 15 inches long with a screw at the end of it was also protruding from the girl’s vagina, according to the documents.
Last Friday, the Obama administration asked the U.S. Supreme Court to stop Texas from executing Leal, asking the court to delay the execution for up to six months to give Congress time to consider legislation that would enforce the U.N. treaty.