Karla Faye Tucker Brown (November 18, 1959 - February 3, 1998) was a convicted murderer executed in Texas. Born in Houston, she was executed by lethal injection, and was pronounced dead at 6:45 p.m. She gained international attention both for being the first woman executed in Texas since the Civil War and the first in the United States since 1984, and also because she had claimed to have become a born-again Christian.
From: Ervin Shaw, "Karla Faye Tucker, murderer and Christian: How bad could a cute little thing be?" webpage, posted 2000, in "Christian Testimonies" section of "The Truth . . . What Is It?" website (http://poptop.hypermart.net/testbn.html; viewed 7 November 2005):
Taught by her mother to "roll it right" and stoned from age 8 to her imprisonment in 1983 at age 23, she mainlined heroin at age 10. This cute Houston girl, who considered herself ugly by comparison to her sisters, and Daniel Garrett visited Jerry Lynn Dean with the intent to steal Jerry's motorcycle. Daniel hit Jerry in the head with a hammer, and Karla Faye grabbed a 3-foot pickax and rained blow after blow on Jerry. She later claimed to police that she had an orgasm each time over 20 blows slammed into Jerry. She also killed his friend Deborah Thornton, leaving the ax embedded in her chest. She bragged that the killings proved she, "...could run with the big boys." In 1984, while in prison, along came a former "druggie", Karen Gill, from the Family Life Training Center southwest of Houston. After hearing Karen's story of transformation by accepting Jesus, Karla Faye came forward, accepted Jesus as her lord and savior and proved to become a born-again believer. She worked among prisoners; and, in late 1997 on death row, set to become only the second female subject of the death penalty in Texas since 1863, she said, "I want more time to spread the Gospel." She noted that the huge international media interest in her situation presented, "...a bigger window of opportunity to show the life that Jesus Christ has given to me, a life I want to give back to others." It is said that about 10% of seriously imprisoned persons eventually become "jail house converts". The U.S. Supreme Court declined to review her case, and she was executed 3 Feb. 1998. Fortunately, because of her conversion, Karla Faye Tucker had already received the only pardon that really counts!