Betty Lou Beets
Betty Lou Beets shot and wounded her second husband, but she didn’t kill him. Her fourth husband wasn’t so lucky. Neither was her fifth.
In August 1983, after Beets reported her fifth husband, retired Dallas firefighter Jimmy Don Beets, missing, police found his boat floating in a nearby lake and presumed he drowned. That is until two years later, when Betty Lou Beets’s son came forward and admitted he helped his mother bury the body. Investigators searched her property and not only found Beets's body hidden under the plastic wising well, but the remains of her fourth husband, Doyle Wayne Barker, buried underneath a storage shed in the yard of her mobile home as well. Both men had been shot multiple times in the back of the head.
Police believe Beets had killed her fifth husband for insurance money. She denied murdering the men, claiming that her son had murdered Jimmy Don Beets during an argument and that she had buried the body to protect him, since he was on probation for burglary. Beets’s son and daughter, who had helped their mother get rid of the bodies, testified against her at trial. The jury found her guilty of her Beets's murder, and sentenced her to death.
After the conviction, her lawyers argued that since she had been physically and sexually abused her whole life – first raped at five years old, she accused her husbands of abuse as well – she should be granted clemency. Anti-domestic violence advocates asked then-Texas Governor George W. Bush to stay her execution, but he denied the request, even traveling back to the state for the 62-year-old great grandmother's execution in February 2000.