Convicted hitman Rolando Ruiz was executed by lethal injection late Tuesday, becoming the third inmate to be executed in Texas this year. He was declared dead at 11:06 p.m. local time. Ruiz was convicted of killing 29-year-old Theresa Rodriguez in 1992 in exchange for $2,000. Rodriguez’s husband and brother-in-law were later discovered to have put Ruiz up to the murder in order to collect life-insurance benefits. They were both sentenced to life in prison for the crime, and Rodriguez’s husband was executed for a separate crime in 2008. Ruiz had appealed the execution, with his defense lawyers arguing that the 44-year-old’s more than two decades in prison and numerous execution dates were unconstitutionally cruel. Despite a five-hour delay in the scheduled execution, however, the U.S. Supreme Court rejected the appeals and let it go ahead as planned.
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