Texas has marked a sombre moment in criminal justice, executing its 500th inmate since it resumed capital punishment in 1982.
Kimberly McCarthy, who was put to death on Wednesday evening for murdering her neighbour, was also the first woman executed in the US in nearly three years.
McCarthy, 52, was executed for the 1997 robbery, beating and fatal stabbing of a retired psychology professor, Dorothy Booth. Ms Booth had agreed to give McCarthy a cup of sugar before she was attacked with a butcher knife and candelabra at her home, south of Dallas. McCarthy cut off Ms Booth’s finger to remove her wedding ring. It was among three slayings linked to McCarthy, a former therapist who became addicted to crack cocaine.
“This is not a loss. This is a win. You know where I’m going. I’m going home to be with Jesus,” McCarthy said in her final statement to her witnesses.