Texas executes Raphael Holiday for killing 3 children in house fire

Raphael Holiday, who was convicted of murdering his daughter and two stepdaughters by setting fire to a mobile home northwest of Houston in 2000, has been executed, state officials say.

Holiday, 36, was pronounced dead at 8:30 p.m. CT on Wednesday at Huntsville Unit in Walker County, Texas. The execution by lethal injection took place after the U.S. Supreme Court rejected an appeal to allow new attorneys to pursue additional appeals in Holiday's case. It came hours after a local court had stopped the execution, saying the conviction and some of the testimony used during the trial were improper, but the judge's order was later voided.

In a last statement before being executed, Holiday said: "Yes, I would like to thank all of my supporters and loved ones. I love you, Love y’all, always going to be with y’all. Thank you Warden."

According to prosecutors, Holiday's common law wife, Tami Wilkerson, had secured a restraining order against him over allegations that he had sexually assaulted his stepdaughter, 7-year-old Tierra Lynch. After attempting to reconcile with Wilkerson about 6 months later, in September 2000, Holiday took a gun and forced the girls' grandmother to douse a mobile home with gasoline, causing a fire that killed Tierra as well as Holiday's 5-year-old stepdaughter Jasmine DuPaul and his own daughter, 1-year-old Justice Holiday.

Holiday was taken into custody after a police chase.

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