Texas Execution Information Center

Execution Report: Larry Robison

Larry Robison
Larry Robison
Executed on 21 January 2000

Larry Keith Robison, 42, was executed by lethal injection on 21 January 2000 in Huntsville, Texas, for robbing and murdering five people.

In August 1982, Junett Bryant went to the home of her son, Ricky Lee Bryant, 31, and found him dead. His body was lying on the floor, with his head severed from his body. The medical examiner later testified that Bryant had also been sexually mutilated and had been shot twice in the head, been stabbed 49 times, and had been cut eight times.

Four more homicide victims were discovered in the house next door to Bryant's. Earline Barker, 55, and Bruce M. Gardner, 33, were found in the living room, fully clothed, with multiple gunshot wounds and cut wounds. Barker had also been stabbed several times. Georgia Ann Reed, 34, was found in a bedroom. Her body was nude. She also had been shot, stabbed, and cut several times. Reed's son, Scott Willard Reed, 11, was found in another bedroom, shot, cut, stabbed, and beaten.

The next day, a police officer in Wichita, Kansas noticed a suspicious-looking car and asked the occupant for identification. The man initially claimed to have no identification, then later produced a checkbook with a different name than the one he had given verbally. The officer also found that the car's registration had expired. He searched the man and found three wallets -- his own, which identified him as Larry Keith Robison, and also those of Bruce Gardner and Ricky Lee Bryant. The search also produced a woman's wedding ring and some bullets. At this, Robison was taken into custody. A search of his car, which had once been registered to Bruce Gardner, revealed a .22 caliber handgun and a suitcase containing ammunition, four rings, and two watches.

Investigators found that all of the shell casings recovered from the murder scene were fired from Robison's handgun. The rings and watches in Robison's posession were identified as belonging to the victims.

A friend of Ricky Lee Bryant's testified that he introduced Bryant to Robison about two months before the murders, and that Robison moved in with Bryant about a month before the murders. Judy Smith, who was a friend of both Bryant and Robison, testified that Robison told her in telephone conversations from jail that he killed Bryant first and only went to the house next door because he couldn't find Bryant's car keys. He killed all four occupants of that house, including the eleven-year-old boy, because he "couldn't leave any witnesses."

The defense produced evidence that Robison had been diagnosed and treated for schizophrenia, and that he was delusional and legally insane at the time of the murders. The state produced evidence that rather than having a mental disorder, Robison was a chronic drug abuser, which accounted for his previous episodes of psychosis. The state disputed the insanity defense by showing that Robison had purchased the gun a week before the murders and he bought three boxes of .22 caliber ammunition the day of the murders.

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