BONNE TERRE, MO. - A Missouri man has been executed for killing a woman and her two children nearly 19 years ago.
Mark Christeson was put to death Tuesday, Missouri's first execution since May. Christeson's fate was sealed when neither the U.S. Supreme Court nor Gov. Eric Greitens would intervene.
Christeson mouthed "I love you" to his brother and sister-in-law as he was being put to death.
A Department of Corrections spokesman says Mark Christeson was pronounced dead at 7:05 p.m. CST, eight minutes after the lethal injection.
Christeson was 18 when he and a 17-year-old cousin, Jesse Carter, broke into the rural Vichy, Missouri, home of Susan Brouk intending to steal her Ford Bronco in 1998. Christeson raped Brouk with her 12-year-old daughter and 9-year-old son in the house.
When one of the children recognized Carter, the teenagers drove the family to a pond and killed them. They fled to California where they were captured eight days later.
The February 1998 killings traumatized the rural area around the south-central Missouri town of Vichy.
Harley Brouk, the half-sister of the two children who were killed, said, "There's not a day that goes by that I do not miss them, and I wish that they were here."
She fought through tears to read a poem that Adrian had written not long before her death. "Our love will always be there even when fate is not fair," the poem reads in part.
Carter is serving life in prison after agreeing to testify against Christeson.
© 2017 Associated Press