1985, Gun Barrel City, Texas: Police searching for missing Fire Department captain Jimmy Don Beets dug inside a wishing well in the neatly tended garden of Beets's wife, 48-year-old Betty Lou Beets. Not only did they find his body, but they also found the body of Betty Lou's fourth husband, Doyle Wayne Barker. It wasn't long before investigators unearthed the terrible truth. As Betty Lou's sordid past emerged, so did her chilling trail of marital violence. She shot her second husband, Billy York Lane, in the back. She tried to run over her third husband, Ronnie Threlkeld, with a car. Both survived to tell their horrific stories. But Barker and Beets, spouses four and five, weren't so lucky. After a sensational trial, Betty Lou Beets was sentenced to die by lethal injection. Fifteen years later, on February 24, 2000, she again drew national attention by becoming the second woman to be executed in Texas since the Civil War.
©2001 Irene Pence (P)2014 Tantor
"One of the most infamous murderers in modern Texas history." (Dallas Morning News)
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