Convicted Central Texas Killer Renews Push For Execution

Texas death row inmate Richard Tabler, 33, who’s awaiting execution for the shooting deaths of a Central Texas nightclub owner and another man, is renewing his push for execution and says the courts are blocking his efforts to die.

Richard Tabler (Texas prison photo)

HUNTSVILLE (October 13, 2012)—Convicted killer Richard Tabler, who’s awaiting execution for the shooting deaths of a Killeen nightclub owner and another man, has sent a letter to The Associated Press in which he says he’s upset that his efforts to die have been blocked in the courts.

Tabler, who used a smuggled cell phone to threaten at state senator from death row, also complains about 24-hour video monitoring and a ban on nearly all of his visitors, AP reported.

Tabler's cell phone calls in 2008 prompted an unprecedented lockdown of the Texas prison system and a contraband sweep.

Tabler says his phone use was "idiotic" and blames it for the court's refusal to comply with his request for a speedy execution.

“It’s no longer about justice,” he said.

But even Tabler's lawyers have refused to support his request and have challenged his competency.

During a competency hearing in August 2011 in U.S. District Court in Waco, Tabler told U.S. District Judge Walter Smith he wanted to die.

Smith granted Tabler a stay of execution in February 2010, two weeks after a May 2010 execution date was set.

Tabler said in a May 2010 letter to the judge that he didn’t want the stay.

“I was very angry was given a stay of execution,” Tabler wrote in the letter.

“This is not something I wanted nor did I ask for it.”

Tabler was sentenced to death in 2007 for the 2004 shooting deaths of Teazers Gentlemen’s Club owner Mohamed-Amine Rahmouni, 25, and his friend Haitham Zayed, 28.

The bodies of the two men were found dumped outside of Killeen.

Tabler and an accomplice used a video camera to record tape of Tabler shooting Rahmouni and Zayed, witnesses said, but the tape was later destroyed.

Tabler was also charged in the murders of Teazer’s dancer Tiffany Dotson, 18, and Amber Benefield, 16, whose bodies were found just south of Highway 190.

The shootings were part of what Bell County authorities described as a bizarre plot that targeted the four victims and eight or nine more people.

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