Gary Dean Miller, 33, was executed by lethal injection on 5 November in Huntsville, Texas for the abduction, rape, and murder of a 7-year-old girl.
On 10 November 1988, Marjorie Howlett asked her cousin and his girlfriend to babysit for her daughter, April Marie Wilson. When the girl asked if she could spend the night, her mother agreed, since she was not scheduled to end work until 10:00 p.m. But Gary Miller, then 21, also lived at the house, and he came home that night drunk on tequila. When he saw the girl sleeping on the couch, he awoke her and began talking to her. He told the girl he was depressed and she gave him a hug. Miller then convinced her to go for a ride with him. He drove her to a remote area of Jones County, where he raped her on the tailgate of his pickup, choked her, and then bludgeoned her to death.
On the day that Wilson was reported missing, Miller joined with the rest of the small community of Anson in searching for her body. Howlett recalls how Miller hugged her and expressed sympathy for her missing daughter. Wilson's body was found by two quail hunters the same day. Miller confessed the murder to police while being questioned. Traces of the child's blood were found on the tailgate of his pickup.
In his confession, Miller stated that he "did not know what happened" when he started abusing April. After he hit her with an object he picked up off the ground, he dragged her body into the brush. He then went back to the house to get some of her personal belongings, which he planned to dump with her body. However, he could not locate the body when he returned to the scene. When he returned home again, he passed out. That morning, when April's aunt asked him if he had seen April, he stated that he had not.
Continued on Page 2