HUNTSVILLE, Texas – A Texas inmate was put to death Thursday night for the fatal slashing of a San Antonio woman more than 13 years ago.
TaiChin Preyor, 46, became the fifth Texas inmate to be executed this year. He was executed by lethal injection.
Preyor was convicted of breaking into the San Antonio apartment of Jami Tackett, 24, in February 2004.
Court documents showed she was his drug supplier.
According to testimony, Preyor kicked in the door where Tackett lived and kept drugs in a safe.
Tackett recognized Preyor when he barged into a bedroom, calling him by his nickname "Box."
He attacked Tackett’s boyfriend, who escaped to a neighbor's apartment and called for help.
Evidence showed Preyor, also a drug seller and user since adolescence, then stabbed Tackett and cut her throat.
Tackett died before paramedics arrived but was able to tell police "the guy who ran from the apartment did this," John Economidy, Preyor's lead defense attorney, recalled this week.
"He is caught at the scene, and the dying declaration did not help us a whole lot," Economidy said.
Preyor told San Antonio police Tackett and her boyfriend attacked him and that he "poked" at Tackett with a knife to protect himself.
"I felt like I was a victim," he said. "I was the one being robbed and I defended myself."
He fled the apartment but returned because he lost his car keys in the struggle.
By the time he tried to flee a second time, police had arrived and used pepper spray to subdue him. He was covered with the blood of his victims.
Before Preyor was put to death, his lawyers argued that deficient legal help during earlier stages of his appeals tainted his case and that he should have been spared from being executed so his appeals could have been reviewed more fairly.
A federal appeals court reviewed the case earlier Thursday and refused to block the execution.
At least six other Texas prisoners are scheduled to be executed in the next several months.
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