70-year-old Texan Executed for Killing In-laws, But First Incites Melee With Cryptic Final Words

Seconds before his death, a Waco killer told those who witnessed his execution Thursday: "That'll be $5.""Take care," Billie Wayne Coble said, just before gasping several times as the lethal injection took effect.Coble, 70, died shortly before 6:30 p.m. in the Huntsville prison, put to death for killing his in-laws Robert and Zelda Vicha and their son, former Waco police Sgt. Bobby Vicha, in August 1989.He also tied up four children and kidnapped his estranged wife, threatening to rape and kill her, too. He was arrested at the end of a chase.Asked Thursday for his final words, Coble told his family he loved them and replied with the cryptic remark, possibly a reference to his nickname, "$5 Bill."Just as he finished speaking, a melee erupted in the death chamber's witness room, with Coble's son and other family members yelling obscenities, banging on the glass and lashing out at other witnesses. They were moved to a courtyard, and two men were handcuffed."Why are you doing this?" a woman asked. "They just killed his daddy."Gordon Coble and his son Dalton ended up in the Walker County Jail, charged with resisting arrest, according to the Houston Chronicle.At age 70, Billy Coble was the oldest inmate executed in the state since Texas reinstated capital punishment in 1982."This is not a happy night," McLennan County District Attorney Barry Johnson said. "This is the end of a horror story for the Vicha family."The Associated Press and the Houston Chronicle contributed to this report.  Continue reading...

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