'We've finally witnessed justice being served': Brother of teenage woman, 18, who was kidnapped, raped and murdered in 2001 watches her killer's execution in Texas on what would have been her 41st birthday

Ramiro Gonzales, 41, was pronounced dead at 6:50pm on Wednesday following a lethal injection at the state penitentiary in Huntsville, Texas , for the killing of Bridget Townsend in 2001.

Tech&Science Jun 27, 2024 IDOPRESS

The brother of a teenage woman who was kidnapped,raped,and murdered in 2021 watched her killer's execution on what would have been her 41st birthday,claiming the family have 'finally witnessed justice being served'.

Ramiro Gonzales,41,was pronounced dead at 6:50pm on Wednesday following a lethal injection at the state penitentiary in Huntsville,Texas,for the killing of Bridget Townsend in 2001.

In his final statement in the execution chamber,Gonzales issued an apology to Townsend's relatives,saying: 'I can't put into words the pain I have caused y'all,the hurt,what I took away that I cannot give back. I hope this apology is enough.

'I never stopped praying that you would forgive me and that one day I would have this opportunity to apologize. I owe all of you my life and I hope one day you will forgive me,' he added.

But the victim's brother,David Townsend,was not moved by the profuse apologies,recalling his families 'pain and heartache'.

Pictured: The state of Texas execution chamber in Huntsville,where Gonzales was executed via lethal injection on Wednesday 

In video submitted as part of his clemency request to the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles,Gonzales admitted responsibility.

'I just want (Townsend's mother) to know how sorry I really am. I took everything that was valuable from a mother,' said Gonzales,who was 18 years old at the time. 

'So,every day it's a continual task to do everything that I can to feel that responsibility for the life that I took.'

But Townsend's brother was not persuaded and took to Change.org to criticize efforts to portray Gonzales as anything other than a convicted murderer who had committed 'unforgivable acts'.

'Our family seeks not revenge,but closure and a measure of peace after years of heartache - a quest that is hindered,not helped,by decisions that allow the perpetrator of our pain to remain in the public eye,' David wrote in a post.   

On Monday,the parole board voted 7-0 against commuting Gonzales' death sentence to a lesser penalty. Members also rejected granting him a six-month reprieve.

Prosecutors described Gonzales as a sexual predator who told police he ignored Townsend's pleas to spare her life. 

They argued that jurors reached the right decision on a death sentence because he had a long criminal history and showed no remorse.

'The State's punishment case was overwhelming,' the Texas Attorney General's Office said. 

'Even if Dr. Gripon's testimony were wiped from the punishment slate,it would not have mattered.'

Gonzales' execution was the second this year in Texas and the eighth in the U.S. On Thursday,Oklahoma is scheduled to execute Richard Rojem for the 1984 abduction,rape and killing of a seven year old girl.


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