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A jury found Beatty guilty of capital murder in August 2004 and sentenced him to death.
In their first appeal to the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, where all capital murder cases in the state are automatically sent, Beatty's lawyers claimed that the burglary element in his conviction was unproven. The defense argued that the evidence showed Click had told Beatty to leave multiple times before, but then she always relented and allowed him to stay, so he had reason to believe she would do so again. A 5-3 majority of the judges on the court agreed with the state of Texas that the evidence presented at trial showed that on the day Beatty murdered Click, he entered her home without her consent with the intention of committing a crime. Beatty's capital murder conviction and death sentence were affirmed.
Beatty's lawyers also disputed the burglary element in their federal appeals, which were denied.
Beatty had originally been scheduled for execution in 2015. His lawyers filed another appeal in the state courts disputing the burglary element. The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals issued a stay of execution. After giving his case another review, the court dismissed his appeal. Other appeals disputing Beatty's mental competency were also denied.
Another execution date in March 2020 was cancelled because of shutdown orders related to the coronavirus pandemic.
"I've got an advantage over most people in the world," Beatty told a reporter in an interview from Death Row in Livingston weeks before his execution. "I mean, you don't know when you're going to die. I know when I'm going to die, and I've known that I was going to die since I've been here."
Beatty told the interviewer that his killing of his mother was "an accident."
"I'd been drinking all day and I came in drunk," he said. "She just started talking trash and raising hell, telling me I wasn't gonna be staying out and all." He said he tried to leave the room, but Click grabbed him by the hair. That's when he lost control and strangled her. He said he then went to bed, thinking she was unconscious. When he rose the next morning, he felt her cold body and realized he'd killed her. He removed her clothes and placed her in the bathtub to rinse off the blood. He left her there for three days before he decided he "had to do something."
"So I just dug a grave in the backyard and put her in it. She always said she wanted to be buried there, on top of the hill, anyways," Beatty said.
The interviewer reported that Beatty did not appear remorseful about the crime.
"I've already made my peace with the Man. So I know where I'm going," Beatty said. "I'll be in a lot better place than this."
Beatty's ex-wife and two of his daughters attended his execution. Also present was a woman named Moran who he had exchanged letters with and married two weeks earlier and a spiritual advisor who stood by him in the death chamber and prayed over him.
Beatty did not make any references to his crime in his last statement. Unlike many condemned inmates, he made no apologies or expressions of remorse.
"I don't want to leave you, baby," he said to his pen-pal wife. See you when you get there. I love you."
Next, addressing his fellow inmates, Beatty said, "Thank you to all my brothers back on the unit for all the encouragement to help get my life right. Sunny, Blue, I love you, brothers. See you on the other side."
The lethal injection was then started. He was pronounced dead at 6:39 p.m.
By David Carson. Posted on 10 November 2022.
Sources: Texas Department of Criminal Justice, court documents, Huntsville Item, Texas Tribune, Tyler Morning Telegraph.