On April 3, 1996 Lisa Allison (21) took her parents 1988 Oldsmobile to the local car wash in Liberty, TX. She would be found the next day, floating in the Trinity River. She had 42 separate injuries including numerous skull fractures and a severed jugular vein.
On July 29,1996, Robert Morrow was arrested for the abduction and murder of Lisa Allison.
Numerous friends testified against Morrow. One even stating Morrow had previously mentioned how easy it would be to kidnap a girl from that very car wash and rob and rape her. Another friend testified that he had dropped Morrow off at the gas station across the street from the car wash the day of Lisa’s murder and yet another testified to seeing him later that evening covered in blood and scratches.
Morrow spun many tales about his whereabouts the night of the murder. The police were never able to confirm any of them. He then claimed another man was responsible for the murder and picked him up in the victims car after the murder had taken place, thus explaining why his blood and hair were found in Allison’s car. This “other man” was never found.
A jury convicted Morrow of capital murder in November 1997 and sentenced him to death. The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals affirmed the conviction and sentence in June 2000. All of his subsequent appeals in state and federal court were denied.
Morrow continued to taunt the victim’s parents after his conviction. Even stating, with a laugh, that he already arranged to be cremated and have his ashes poured over Lisa Allison’s grave.
Four days before his scheduled execution he finally admitted to the murder of Lisa Allison. Although, he claimed she went with him willingly to smoke crack and after getting high she was killed during an altercation between the two. Even though Allison had no history of drug use and no drugs were found in her system at the time of death.
On November 4, 2004 , Robert Brice Morrow was executed by lethal injection at the Huntsville Unit in Huntsville, TX. His last words were,
“Mike and Ms. Allison, I would like to tell you that I am responsible and I am sorry for what I did and the pain I caused you all. I love you Earline and all of my friends that stood by me. I feel blessed to have had you all. Stay strong and take care of them kids. Set me free Warden. Father, accept me.”
He was pronounced dead at 6:35 p.m.
Robert Morrow was born 06/03/1957 in Louisiana. He was one of five children being raised by a mother and an abusive, alcoholic father. At the age of 9 he ran away from home to join the circus. A few years later, he returned only to then drop out of high school in the 10th grade. He would later receive his GED.
As an adult, Morrow was convicted for forgery and was sentenced to five years’ probation. After violating the terms of his probation, he was sentenced to 30 months in prison. He served 20 months of that sentence from 1981 to 1983 before being released. Morrow also served time in Louisiana and South Carolina for burglary, grand larceny, and carrying a weapon illegally. As well as misdemeanor convictions for marijuana possession, marijuana delivery, and failure to identify as a fugitive.
As far as Morrow is concerned, this is pretty much speculation. From the articles I found regarding this case, I could determine what type of crime it was, obviously. But his reasoning’s weren’t exactly straight forward. If we look at his confession given days before his execution and take it as truth then it was merely an issue of wrong place/wrong time,
Four days before his scheduled execution, Morrow told a reporter that Allison went willingly with him from the car wash to smoke crack cocaine. As they were driving down an isolated road near the Trinity River, Allison’s car got a flat tire. She became upset with him for not changing the tire quickly enough, he said, and she stabbed him in the leg with a screwdriver. “I’m high on cocaine, and it blew my fuse,” Morrow said. “So, I knotted up and slapped her and beat the (expletive) out of her.” She then ran from him, so he chased her and dragged her back to the car, throwing her in the trunk so he could change the tire. “When I opened the trunk again, she came at my like a raving … maniac. So, I had to whop her upside the head with a jack handle.”
Lisa Allison’s father was a Liberty city councilman, and she had relatives in local law enforcement, including a cousin who was a deputy sheriff. “I knew who her family was,” Morrow said. “I was a convicted felon that had been to the pen three times. I didn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell. I did what I had to do.” He then cut Allison’s throat. “I wish it didn’t happen, but I can’t change it,” he said. “When you do drugs, there’s no telling what can happen. I did that night, and it got out of hand.”
Morrow said that he should not be executed for Allison’s murder because he did not kidnap her. By law, only murder cases that include an aggravating factor, such as kidnapping, are eligible for the death penalty.http://www.txexecutions.org/reports/333-Robert-Morrow.htm?page=2
Now, if choose to assume this is a lie for his own benefit, (which it seems that way), then we are back to no clear reason other than it was easy for him. This leads me somewhere along the roads of Routine Activities Theory and Rational Choice Theory.
Routine Activities Theory
In routine activity theory, crime is likely to occur when three essential elements of crime converge in space and time: a motivated offender, an attractive target, and the absence of capable guardianship.https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Routine_activity_theory
1.Motivation: They want somethinghttps://owlcation.com/social-sciences/Psychology-of-Crime-Why-do-people-become-criminals
2.Suitable Target: They see what they want
3.Absence of Guardians: And there’s no one about
On April 3, sitting across from that car wash, Morrow wanted something, he saw a suitable target, and there was no one really around to do anything about it.
Rational Choice Theory
The position of Rational Choice Theory is that criminal behavior is no different from noncriminal behavior in that it is conduct that persons intentionally choose to undertake (i.e., they are not compelled or forced to do crime), and the reason that they choose to commit crime is that they think it will be more rewarding and less costly for them than noncriminal behavior.http://criminal-justice.iresearchnet.com/criminology/theories/rational-choice-theory/
Again, this is very close to Routine Activity Theory. The only reason he committed this crime is he wanted to. He wanted something and it was easier to take it from Allison by force then go about receiving it by honest means. Of course, the price of his crime was far higher than he probably imagined.
From what I can tell about Morrow, he seemed to fit the bill for most stereotypical criminals. Rough childhood, low education, history of drug abuse. His crimes escalated as he made his way in and out of the correctional system with no apparent remorse. Eventually, he ended up across the street from that car wash and whether he thought he would just rob her for drug money or did have every intention of killing her that day, we will never know. But we do know, he saw something he wanted and he took it.
Phew! I did it guys! I researched and wrote and completed a thing when I said I would. Please, please, if you did you read this, I could 100% use feedback. This is my first time doing something like this and I really don’t know if this was the best way to do it or not. Week to week this will be a learning experience. I hope you bare with me while I get my footing.
Follow me on Twitter @AndytheWriter33 for updates on my upcoming posts. You will also likely see me retweet cat and dog videos. But who doesn’t enjoy those?
Thanks so much for reading and letting me know how I am doing.