- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 29, 2002

DALLAS (UPI) A jury yesterday sentenced to death another of the seven convicts who escaped from a Texas prison in 2000 for the murder of a police officer.
Donald Newbury, 39, was the second of the so-called Texas Seven to receive a death sentence. He was convicted of killing Irving officer Aubrey Hawkins during a sporting-goods store robbery after the breakout. George Rivas, the leader of the escape, received a death sentence in the summer.
The jurors in the Newbury trial deliberated about an hour before returning with the unanimous verdict. The same jury convicted him of capital murder in the case Jan. 18.
In final arguments, defense attorney Doug Parks said that Newbury never intended for anyone to die when he and the six other escaped convicts robbed the Irving store.
"Mr. Newbury, himself, personally, never took anyone's life," he said.
In a confession, Newbury said he fired three times when the police officer drove up on the robbery as they were fleeing, but he did not admit to shooting the officer.
Prosecutor Toby Shook told the jury that all seven of the escaped convicts were armed and took part in the robbery, holding 17 employees hostage and then killing Mr. Hawkins.
"You saw the evidence in that car," he said. "All of them were shooting and ambushing officer Hawkins when he came to the back of that store."
Mr. Hawkins was shot 11 times and then run over by the getaway car, an autopsy showed.
Prosecutors did not have to prove that Newbury shot Mr. Hawkins. Under Texas law, they had to show only that he was a participant in the murder of the officer.

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