Charles Flores, Texas

 

Updated: Monday, May 30, 2016 11:41 am EDT

Charles Don Flores was scheduled to executed at 6 pm CDT, on Thursday, June 2, 2016, at Walls Unit of the Huntsville State Penitentiary in Huntsville, Texas. His execution has been stayed. Forty-six-year-old Charles is convicted of the murder of 64-year-old Elizabeth Black on January 29, 1998, in Farmers Branch, Texas. Charles has spent the last 17 years of his life on Texas’ death row.

Charles never graduated from high school, dropping out after the 11th grade. Charles had a history of drug abuse and sniffing gasoline. Charles also claimed that he was abused as a child. Charles had previously been convicted for robbery and possession of cocaine. He worked as a laborer prior to his arrest.

During the morning hours of January 29, 1998, Charles Flores, Richard Childs, and several others were using methamphetamine and marijuana. Around 3:00 am, Flores and Childs left in Childs’ Volkswagen and met up with Jackie Roberts. The trio went to buy more methamphetamine from Terry Plunk, and acquaintance of Jackie.

After purchasing the drug, Flores insisted that they had been shortchanged. Jackie told Flores that there was cash hidden at the home of Jackie’s husband’s parents' home and that she would pay for the missing amount of drugs. Jackie’s husband was Gary Black. Child and Flores took Jackie home, and went to Childs’ grandmother’s house to use the recently purchased drug, before leaving again.

 

On January 29, 1998, the neighbors of the Black family noticed that the garage door had been left partially open, which was unusual. Neighbor Jill Bargainer told police that she had seen two men exit a Volkswagen, which was corroborated by other neighbors. The men were also seen rolling under the partially opened garage door. The following day, Jill was able to identify Childs as the driver of the vehicle and was able to describe the passenger, whom she later testified was Flores.

 

Inside the home, police found Gary’s mother, Elizabeth Black shot to death, along with the family dog. Additionally, a potato was found in the sink and potato was splattered on the wall, likely an attempt at silencing the gunshot.

 

The day after the murder, Flores told a friend that he had shot the dog, but that Child’s shot Elizabeth. Two days after the murder, Flores and Child disposed of the Volkswagen, by lighting it on fire. They then stole another vehicle.

 

Childs was arrested shortly thereafter, with ammunition matching what was found at the crime scene, along with a weapon. Police also discovered a pair of gloves, which contained starch grains consistent with those from a potato.

 

Flores was arrested on April 18, 1998, after being stopped by a police officer in Kyle, Texas. Flores gave police a false name and failed field sobriety tests. He was arrested, after making several attempts to resist arrest, for driving while intoxicated. Police did not discover his connection to Elizabeth’s murder until after he had been released on bond.

 

Flores was again arrested on May 1, 1998, after a high-speed chase through a residential neighborhood, that ended with a head-on collision. Flores again resisted arrested, fleeing and fighting law enforcement officials when they attempted to handcuff him.

 

On July 10, 1998, Flores attempted to escape police custody at a hospital, threatening the officer escorting him, attempting to steal his weapon, and threatening the hospital staff with pepper spray.

 

Flores was convicted and sentenced to death on April 2, 1999. Flores insisted that he is innocent of the crime. He also says his family and friends were threatened with prison time if they testified on his behalf and supported his alibi.

 

Charles Flores' execution was stayed by the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals. His lawyers argued that his trial was "fundamentally flawed." Neighbor and witness, Jill Bargainer was allegedly improperly hypnotized by the police. It was only after she was hypnotized that she was able to identify Charles as the passenger in the vehicle. Charles' lawyers also point out that prior to being hypnotized, she had been shown pictures of Charles and was unable to identify him. Jill was the main witness for the prosecution.

 

Please pray for peace and healing for the family of Elizabeth Black. Please pray for strength for the family of Charles. Please pray that if Charles is innocent, lacks the competency to be executed, or should not be executed for any other reason, that evidence will be presented prior to his execution. Please pray that Charles may come to find peace through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, if he has not already.

 

 

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