Texas Prisons End Last-Meal Tradition on Death Row

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David J Sams, Getty Images

Lethal injection death chamber in Huntsville, Texas, prison

Convicted murderer Lawrence Russell Brewer’s lavish dinner order before his execution on Wednesday prompted Senator John Whitmire to call for an end to the “inappropriate” practice.

Prison officials heeded his request, and death-row inmates in Texas will no longer be allowed to have whatever they want for their final meal. Instead they will be served the same meal as the other prisoners.

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Brewer, a white supremacist convicted of the dragging death of James Byrd, Jr., ordered — but did not touch — two chicken-fried steaks with gravy and sliced onions; a triple-patty bacon cheeseburger; a cheese omelet with ground beef, tomatoes, onions, bell peppers and jalapeños; a bowl of fried okra with ketchup; one pound of barbecued meat with half a loaf of white bread; three fajitas; a meat-lover’s pizza; one pint of Blue Bell Ice Cream; a slab of peanut-butter fudge with crushed peanuts; and three root beers.

In his letter requesting that prisons stop the tradition, an outraged Whitmire wrote, “It is extremely inappropriate to give a person sentenced to death such a privilege. One which the perpetrator did not provide to their victim.”

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