HOUSTON – Monday was an emotional day in court for the family of a Houston police officer killed in the line of duty, but they finally got what they wanted.
Maura Irby said she has been waiting for more than two decades to see her husband’s killer die.
“I’m a nurse. I’ll put the needle in his hand. I don’t have any problem with that. It may not get me to heaven with my husband but it certainly will make me feel a lot better to know that someone that was as heartless, as soulless, and evil as he is, is off the face of this earth.”
Death is coming, as the execution chamber now waits for Carl Wayne Buntion again, thanks to a Harris County Jury.
Buntion was granted this new sentencing hearing because of faulty jury instructions in his original trial.
Now, 22 years after he killed Houston Police Officer James Irby during a traffic stop, with this death sentence, the clock ticks once more.
Cally Irby was 1 year old when she lost her dad. She has spent her life waiting for justice.
“I wouldn’t wish this on anybody. Honestly, I about passed out. I was just trying to be calm and keep hope that the jury would make the right decision,” she said.
The Irby case was a flash point for prison expansion and parole reform in Texas, and pushed Andy Kahan into his career as a victim’s advocate.
“There is a lasting legacy that the Irby family has, and they can look to the sky and tell Officer Jim Irby, ‘Your death was not in vain,’” Kahan said.
Cody Irby was 3 year old when his father died. Now he is a police officer in Pflugerville.
“It was just something that I was driven to do,” he said.
He is back on the job Wednesday.
“Go back to life and do what you do,” he said.
Maura Irby has one simple message for Carl Wayne Buntion.
“Die faster,” she said.
That is all she will say.
“I feel like I can show my contempt for him better by completely ignoring him. I don’t think he deserves that kind of time and attention,” she said.
Buntion has had plenty of that already.