ETX rape and gunshot victim wants man to face execution - | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

ETX rape and gunshot victim wants man to face execution

Beunka Adams. (Source: Texas Department of Criminal Justice.) Beunka Adams. (Source: Texas Department of Criminal Justice.)

On Tuesday, an East Texas woman and her family shared their frustration after the man sentenced to death for murder the murder of Kenneth Vandever was granted a reprieve by a federal judge.

Beunka Adams was convicted of murder for killing 37-year-old Kenneth Vandever after a gas station robbery in Rusk back in 2002.

Adams and Richard Cobb abducted Vandever and two women, shooting all three. The two women survived.  

"Tears of frustration, and disappointment after finding out a convicted murderer, originally sentenced to die on Thursday, could now escape the death penalty," said the victim's mother Melinda Ansley.

"Outraged, I still am, I'm hurt, I want it fixed," Melinda continued.

"What's the point of going to court, what's the point of me pointing the finger and saying, 'that's who did it?' I mean it was useless," said Nikki Ansley, a victim of the attack.  

Almost 10 years ago, Beunka Adams and Richard Cobb robbed a convenience store in Rusk. Adams abducted Nikki, raped her, and shot her in the back.

"I wouldn't wish this upon my worst enemy, and you talk about forgiveness, well that's between me and God," said Melinda.

Nikki's brother, Troy Ansley still remembers their father's reaction.

"I had never heard a grown man wail and cry the way he did," said the victims brother Troy Ansley.

Adams claims he didn't have proper representation in the appeals, and U.S. District Judge Schneider granted a delay in his execution.

"How many years does it take to go through appeals after appeals before enough is enough," Troy questioned.  

Ten years later, the Ansley's say they are still fighting for justice, and feel like they're fighting alone.

"You don't hear anything about our rights. We don't really have rights. We go hire an attorney, we have rights then because we paid for it," said Melinda.

The Ansley's said the communication is stronger between the suspect and the court, than the victims and the court.

"This guy that killed him, people are thinking it's sad he's going to die, he will leave loved ones, no one asked the victims," Nikki pointed out.  

"What gives a judge the power, one judge, and the right to make a decision to halt something that has been going on for nine years," Troy asked.  

By going public with their story, the Ansley's hope Adams will face the death penalty which they say will give justice to all the victims and their families.

The execution has been delayed until the courts review allegations that Adams had poor legal help in the early stages of his appeals.

The Texas Attorney General's Office has asked the federal judge to remove the stay of execution.

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