Christopher Jay Swift, 31, was executed by lethal injection on 30 January 2007 in Huntsville, Texas for the murders of his wife and mother-in-law.
On 29 April 2003 in Irving, Swift, then 28, stabbed and strangled his wife, Amy Sabeh-Swift, 27, in the recreational vehicle where they lived. She was eight or nine months pregnant. He then drove to Lake Dallas and strangled Amy's mother, Sandy Sabeh, 61. He then took his five-year-old son, Zachary, who witnessed both killings, to a motel in Farmer's Branch. Swift checked into a room after midnight and, after Zachary fell asleep, left him there.
The next day, a motel employee called the police to report that an abandoned child was playing unsupervised in the lobby area. Upon their arrival, Zachary told police officers that his father left him there the night before after killing his mother and grandmother.
A trace of Swift's debit card led authorities to a Dallas motel where Swift was hiding out. He was arrested and confessed to killing both women and abandoning his son. He said that voices in his head and his son encouraged him to strangle the women. The day after his arrest, Swift told a Dallas television station in a jailhouse interview that he committed the murders because Zachary "was giving me the order to do it."
Swift had previous arrests for assault, driving while intoxicated, and evading arrest. One incident involved striking a police officer with his vehicle in December 1996. Another involved hitting his mother on the head and face and threatening her with a knife in January 1997. Swift was convicted in both of these cases and received a 4-year prison sentence. Information on the length of time he served on this sentence was not available for this report.
Prosecutors in Dallas County, where Mrs. Sabeh was killed, yielded to Denton County, where Amy Swift was killed. Swift was tried in Denton County for the capital offense of killing two people in one criminal event.
At his trial, prosecutors presented evidence that on the day of the killings, Swift had quit his job because his employer asked him to take a drug test. This decision sparked an argument with his wife, leading up to the killings.
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