Friday, April 19, 2024

Texas Executes Wesley Ruiz on February 1, 2023

Wesley Ruiz, Texas

Updated: Wednesday, February 1, 2023

Wesley Ruiz

Wesley Ruiz was executed by the state of Texas on Wednesday, February 1, 2023.  Wesley was pronounced dead at 6:41 pm local time, inside the execution chamber at the Walls Unit of the Huntsville State Penitentiary in Huntsville, Texas.  He was 43 years of age.  Wesley was convicted of murdering Mark Nix on March 23, 2007, in Dallas, Texas. He spent the last 14 years of his life on Texas’ death row.

Wesley was born and raised in Texas. He completed the 11th grade but did not graduate high school. Prior to his arrest, he worked as a truck driver. He did not have any previous prison record, however, court records indicated he was part of a criminal gang.

On March 21, 2007, the homicide division of the Dallas Police Department instructed all officers to be on the lookout for a 1996 4-door Chevy Caprice. The order included a description of the vehicle, red and gray in color with chrome wheels and tinted windows. The owner of the vehicle was suspected of a capital murder, possibly gang-related.

On March 23, 2007, a vehicle matching the description of the order was seen by two plainclothes police officers. The officers followed the vehicle while requesting marked patrol cars to pull over the vehicle. Corporal Mark Nix arrived in a marked patrol car, positioned himself behind the suspected vehicle, and activated his over headlights.

The suspected vehicle briefly braked before speaking off down a winding road. Cpl. Nix and at least one other patrol car followed. The suspected vehicle took a curve too fast, hit a curb, and spun out of control. The two police cars blocked the suspected vehicle from being able to leave.

Nix approached the vehicle and began trying to break the passenger side window with his baton. After punching a small hole in the window, a shot came from the rear passenger window. The bullet struck Nix’s badge and splintered. A fragment entered his clavicle and severed his carotid artery.

Other officers returned fire and dragged Nix to cover. They also called a SWAT team and an ambulance. Nix was taken to the hospital where he was pronounced dead. A man driving the suspected car, later identified as Wesley Ruiz, was eventually taken from the vehicle. He had received multiple gunshot wounds. Ruiz was taken to the hospital for treatment and survived his injuries.

During his trial, Ruiz testified that he believed the police were firing upon him and that he shot back in self-defense. The jury did not believe his defense and sentenced him to death.

Please pray for the family of Mark Nix. Pray for strength for the family of Wesley Ruiz. Pray that if he lacks the competency to be executed, is innocent of the crime for which he is convicted, or should not be executed for any other reason, that evidence will be presented before his execution. Please pray that Mark may come to find peace through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

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