Last Man Punished In Racially Motivated Murder

Barbara Schwarz
April 25, 2019 - 7:32 am
John William King

Credit: Texas Department of Corrections


DALLAS (1080 KRLD) - The final piece of justice has been dispensed in the racially motivated murder of James Byrd Jr. 

Convicted white supremacist John William King orchestated the 1998 murder of the African American man in Jasper. 

Byrd was chained to a pickup and dragged down a logging road for three miles and decapitated. The horrific crime put the small southeast texas town in the national spotlight.

King didn't offer a last statement or even look at Bryd's family including older sister Clara Byrd Taylor, who watched from the witness booth. "Closure is a word that's difficult to define for many people.  It's like a wound that you have that's healed but the scar always remains.  So the scar of James' death will always be with us but it's not paralyzing us."

She says Byrd showed no interest in the trial and "seemed to show no interest in being strapped to a gurney and dying.  He was kind of bored in the trial and disinterested, same attitute tonight to me."

Lawrence Brewer, another of Bryd's killers was put to death in 2011. 

The third man, Shawn Berry, is serving a life sentence