Texas Execution Information Center

Execution Report: Richard Cartwright

Richard Cartwright
Richard Cartwright
Executed on 19 May 2005

Richard Michael Cartwright, 31, was executed by lethal injection on 19 May 2005 in Huntsville, Texas for the robbery and murder of a 37-year-old man.

On 1 August 1986, Cartwright, then 22, was out with two friends - Dennis Hagood, 19, and Kelly Overstreet, 18 - in Corpus Christi. When Nick Moraida pulled up in a black sports car, the trio, posing as homosexuals, invited him to go drinking with them at a seaside park. Moraida agreed, and the four drove off together. They parked in a cul-de-sac and walked down a hill to the seawall. The men then robbed Moraida of his wallet, keys, watch, and an envelope containing cash. Moraida's body was discovered near the seawall the next day by fishers. His neck was cut, and he had been shot in the back with a .38-caliber pistol. At Cartwright's trial, the medical examiner testified that the knife wounds were not fatal, and that the gunshot wound was the cause of death.

Overstreet and Hagood testified against Cartwright and claimed he was responsible for Moraida's death. According to their testimony, when they had Moraida by the concrete seawall, Cartwright pulled out a pistol and told him, "This is a robbery. Put your hands on the cement." Overstreet then held a knife to the victim's neck. They robbed him, then Overstreet cut Moraida's throat, and Cartwright shot him in the back.

Cartwright had a prior felony conviction for unlawful possession of a controlled substance. He was sentenced to two years' probation in February 1990.

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