Robert James Anderson, 40, was executed by lethal injection on 20 July
2006 in Huntsville, Texas for the kidnapping, sexual assault, and
murder of a 5-year-old girl.
On 9 June 1992, Audra Reeves was walking home from an Amarillo park.
As she passed in front of Anderson's house, Anderson, then 26,
abducted her and took her inside. After attempting to rape her,
Anderson choked her, beat her with a stool, and stabbed her with a
paring knife and a barbecue fork. Anderson then took the girl into the
bathroom and drowned her in the bathtub. He then placed her body in a
foam ice chest and, using a grocery cart to transport it, left it in a
dumpster behind another residence. The ice chest containing the girl's
nude body was found in the dumpster by a homeowner throwing out his
The person who found the body also witnessed Anderson near the
dumpster earlier. Other witnesses reported seeing Anderson pushing a
grocery cart along the street, carrying a white ice chest. The
witnesses gave a description of the suspect to police, and Anderson
was arrested as he was walking back home.
Anderson gave a written confession in which he admitted kidnapping and
killing Audra. He said he had recently had an argument with his wife.
Anderson had no prior criminal arrests, but ample evidence was
presented at his punishment hearing of his previous sexual assaults on
young girls and his violent nature.
- His stepsister, Rebekah Anderson, testified that when she was five
years old, Anderson had her sit on his lap, then he unzipped his pants
and removed her shorts. Rebekah's sister, Delores Davis, testified
that when Rebekah was three, she saw Anderson with his hand beneath
Rebekah's skirt as she sat on his lap.
- Anderson's 11-year-old niece, Charity Anderson, testified that
about six months before the murder, Anderson babysat for her and her
brother and sister. He frequently invited Charity's 8-year-old sister,
Raven, to sit on his lap, and on one occasion, he held her 6-year-old
brother, Jeremiah, by the throat for several minutes.
- Anderson's biological sister, Myra, testified that Anderson
sexually assaulted her from age 7 to age 13. He forced her to engage
in oral sex and attempted to have intercourse with her. Myra also
testified that Anderson pushed her down a hill once, and that he once
held her down and hit her repeatedly on her knees with a baseball bat.
- Another stepsister, Helena Garza, testified that Anderson began
fondling her when she was six years old. When she was ten, Anderson
forced her to have intercourse and perform oral sex about once a week,
for about a year, by striking or threatening her with a baseball bat.
Anderson also raped Helena when she was 15 or 16.
- Myra's friend, Carla Burch, testified that when she was 12, she
spent the night at the Anderson home. She was awakened during the
night by someone touching her face. Anderson was standing in front of
her wearing only a towel. He had pulled the covers off of Carla and
raised her nightgown. He asked her to come to his room, but she
- Anderson's ex-wife, Debbie Kay Anderson, testified that Anderson
was physically abusive towards her, and that he often padlocked her in
their apartment when he left. Debbie also testified that when she was
babysitting a 2-year-old girl, she heard the girl crying and walked
into the room to see the girl with her diaper removed and Anderson
with his pants down. Anderson then grabbed Debbie and began choking
and hitting her, telling her not to tell anyone.
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