Robert Earl Carter, 34, was executed on 31 May by lethal injection in Huntsville, Texas for the murder of six people.
Carter, a former correctional officer, was one of three persons charged in the murders of Bobbie Joyce Davis, 45, her daughter Nicole, 16, her granddaughters Denitra, 9, Lea'Erin, 5, and Brittany, 6, and her grandson Jason, 4. All of the murders occurred at Bobbie Davis' home. Bobbie Davis was stabbed 29 times in the head and beaten with a blunt object. Nicole was killed by five gunshots to the head and chest and was also stabbed. All the other victims died from between seven and 13 stab wounds each. Jason, the 4-year-old boy, was Carter's son. He was stabbed to death as he cowered under a blanket. The murderers then poured gasoline over the bodies and burned them, setting the house afire.
Four days before the murders, Carter, then 36, had been named in a paternity suit filed by Lisa Davis, the child's mother. Court records show that Carter was upset with the lawsuit, which was a step towards seeking child support for Jason. Authorities believe that the Carter and his co-defendant, Anthony Charles Graves, went to Davis' house intending to confront Lisa, but found that she was at work at the time. They got into an argument with Bobbie Davis and Graves stabbed her, then Carter shot Nicole when she came out and recognized him. Court records also show that Graves was upset with Bobbie Davis over a work promotion she received that he felt his mother deserved.
Carter attended funeral services for the victims with his head and arms in bandages for severe burns apparently suffered in the house fire. He was arrested the next day. During questioning, he acknowledged setting the house afire but blamed Graves for the murders. At Graves' 1994 trial, Carter testified that he himself shot Nicole Davis. Graves was also convicted of capital murder and is on Texas' death row, with no execution date currently scheduled. Carter's wife, Theresa Ray Carter, was also originally named as a co-defendant, but no information was available about her case.
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