Texas Serial Killer Dies at Michigan Hospital - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

9/21/07

Texas Serial Killer Dies at Michigan Hospital

Prison officials say confessed Texas serial killer Coral Eugene Watts died Friday at a Michigan hospital of apparent prostate cancer. He was 53.

Watts last week was sentenced to a second life prison term, for the slaying a Western Michigan University student.

In July, a jury convicted Watts of first-degree murder in the 1974 stabbing death of 19-year-old Gloria Steele.

In 2004 he was convicted in the 1979 killing of 36-year-old Helen Dutcher of Ferndale, Michigan.

Watts had received immunity for 12 other killings - eleven in Texas and one in Michigan - in a 1982 deal with Texas prosecutors.

He received 60 years for burglary with intent to murder, but mandatory release and an appeals court reduced his sentence by more than 35 years.

Michigan revived the Dutcher and Steele cases to try to keep Watts behind bars, because he was to have been released from a Texas prison in 2006.

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