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Archive for Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Texan executed for fatal stabbing

August 24, 2005

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— A man who fatally attacked a woman in her home with a knife and a hammer nearly 11 years ago was executed Tuesday evening in Huntsville, Texas.

Robert Alan Shields, 30, was executed by injection while his parents and his victim's parents watched. He had no final statement.

A jury condemned him for the killing of Paula Stiner, 27, whose body was found by her husband as he returned to their suburban Houston home from work in September 1994. Shields, whose parents lived next door, was arrested three days later.

According to evidence at the trial, Shields' fingerprints and bloody shoeprints were in the laundry room where Stiner's body was found. About 90 minutes after Stiner was killed, Shields used her credit card. And when he was arrested about 50 miles away, he had her car.

Appeals lawyers contended Shields was trying to defend himself, an argument that was never pursued by his attorneys at trial. They also contended a state-appointed lawyer who initially handled Shields' appeal was inexperienced and incompetent.

Shields, who was 19 at the time of his crime, became the 12th Texas inmate to be executed this year.

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