Updated: Monday, April 17, 2017 9:07 am EDT
Paul David Storey was scheduled to be executed at 6 pm CDT, on Wednesday, April 12, 2017, at the Walls Unit of the Huntsville State Penitentiary in Huntsville, Texas. His execution has been stayed. Thirty-two-year-old Paul is convicted of the murder of 28-year-old Jonas Cherry on October 16, 2006, in Hurst, Texas. Paul has spent the last 9 years of his life on Texas’ death row.
Paul's execution was stayed by the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals. Paul's execution was stayed after evidence was presented suggesting that the prosecution shared false evidence. During the trial, the prosecution stated that all of Jonas' family wanted Paul to be sentenced to death. Jonas' parents have since come out and said that they do not want to see Paul executed. They also say that they made their opinion clear to the prosecutor during the trial. The Court of Criminal Appeals has stayed the execution while the issue is investigated.
Paul had graduated from high school. Paul was previously a truck driver and worked at Putt-Putt Golf and Games.
On October 16, 2006, Jonas Cherry arrived at his place of employment, Putt-Putt Golf and Games, around 8:15 am. He disabled the security alarm system at 8:43 am. Approximately ten minutes later, his co-worker, Timothy Flow arrived and found Jonas lying in a pool of blood in the officer area, clutching the key to the manager’s office, which was still locked.
Timothy was concerned the perpetrator was still in the building, so he returned to the parking lot. Seeing only his and Jonas’ vehicles, he re-entered the building and, believing Jonas to be dead, left the building again and called the police. Timothy waited in his vehicle for the police to arrive.
Police were informed that there were four VCRs set up to record the security surveillance cameras. One VCR was missing, two videotapes had been stolen, but the fourth was still operational, with a tape. On the tape, a red two-door Ford Explorer drove up the road towards the public parking area. A few minutes later, the vehicle left public parking and went in the direction of the employee parking area. Police released the video to the media.
The police received a phone call from a friend of Paul Storey. The friend claimed Storey was present when Jonas was robbed and murdered and provided the police with his phone number. When police called Storey, he agreed to meet with them and acknowledged that the vehicle being shown on the news was his. Storey also claimed that his vehicle was not currently working and he could, therefore, not drive the police station. The police agreed to pick him up.
When the police arrived at Storey’s house, they looked at the vehicle, noting that the license plates did not match the ones in the video. Storey claimed that he had switched out the plates for a “gas run.” Storey then accompanied the police to the station to give a statement.
Over the next several days, Storey gave police three oral statements. In the first, Storey denied any participation, but admitted to being a witness. In the second, Storey admitted to participating by serving as a lookout, helping others gain entry, and warning them to steal the surveillance tapes. In the third statement, Storey admitted to planning the robbery and shooting Jonas. Jonas had been shot twice in the head, both of which were fatal injuries. He was also shot in both legs and one hand.
Storey was sentenced to death in September 2008.
Please pray for peace and healing for the family of Jonas Cherry. Please pray for strength for the family of Paul Storey. Please pray that if Paul is innocent, lacks the competency to be executed, or should not be executed for any other reasons, that evidence will be presented prior to his execution. Please pray that Paul may come to find peace through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, if he has not already.