Suzanne Basso was executed by the State of Texas for the murder of a mentally disabled man.
Suzanne Basso married her first husband in the 1970’s and would have two children. Her husband would be arrested for sexually molesting the children later on.
Basso would start a relationship with another man who had the last name Basso but even though they never married due to Suzanne not divorcing her first husband. Unfortunately this man would pass away a few years later
Suzanne would start a relationship online with Buddy Musso a man with limited intelligence and was living at a assisted living facility. Basso would convince Buddy to move into her residence.
Sixteen days after Buddy Musso moved into the Basso residence he would die brutally. According to reports Buddy was abused from the moment he moved in and was forced to do chores and would be physically and mentally abused.
Six people took part in the murder of Buddy Musso including Suzanne Basso who forced Musso to sign over his life insurance to her. Buddy Musso would be beaten, burned with cigarettes, hit with a wire brush and put into a bathtub filled with bleach and kitchen cleaner. The perpatrators would dress Musso lifeless body and drop his remains in a nearby park. Buddy Musso cause of death would be multiple blunt force trauma.
Of all six people who took part in the murder Basso was the only one to receive the death penalty as prosecutors believed she was the ringleader .
On February 5, 2014 Suzanne Basso would be executed by lethal injection
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On August 26, 1998, Mical Renz was jogging on Main Street in Galena Park at about 6:15 a.m. when he saw what he believed to be a person lying on the embankment. At the time, Renz did not stop to inquire further into what he had seen. After finishing his morning run and preparing for work, Renz went back to the scene a few minutes before 8:00 a.m. He discovered that what he had seen earlier was the body of a dead man. Renz then called the police.
A few minutes later, Officer Kevin Cates of the Galena Park Police Department arrived on the scene and confirmed that the victim was dead. Cates observed that the body was dressed in clean clothes, despite the fact that the body was bloody and badly bruised. From that, the officer concluded that the victim had been moved to that location rather than killed there. Shortly after Cates’s arrival, Assistant Chief Robert Pruett also arrived. Pruett had a police dispatcher check neighboring cities for reports of missing persons. Jacinto City, a city which borders Galena Park, indicated that a Suzanne Basso had recently filed a missing person report. Based on that report, Pruett headed out to Suzanne Basso’s address, hoping to gain more information regarding the then unidentified victim.
When Pruett arrived at Basso’s apartment, Suzanne Basso had gone to the Jacinto City Police Department to give them an identification card belonging to Louis “Buddy” Musso, the person she had reported as missing. She returned to her apartment a few minutes after Pruett had arrived. From speaking with her, Pruett learned that Musso lived with Basso and her son, James O’Malley. Basso invited Pruett into her home. While inside, Pruett met O’Malley and saw some bloody clothing and a bloody sheet near a cot on the living room floor. Suzanne Basso told Pruett that Musso slept in the living room on the cot and that the clothing was Musso’s. Pruett then asked Basso and O’Malley to accompany him to where the victim’s body lay to determine whether they could identify him.
When they arrived, O’Malley got out of the car and, without displaying any signs of surprise or emotion, positively identified the victim as Musso. Pruett then asked them both to go to the police station with him and give a written statement, to which both agreed. At the police station, O’Malley confessed, in an oral and written statement, to the events surrounding, and the persons involved in, the murder of Musso. He directed the officers to a dumpster where officers retrieved a garbage bag that contained bloodstained clothes worn by Musso at the time of his death, plastic gloves, bloodstained towels, and used razors, all used to coverup evidence of Musso’s death.
After speaking with O’Malley, Pruett went to appellant’s apartment, located in Houston. Appellant was one of the persons mentioned by O’Malley as being involved in the murder of Musso. In addition to appellant, her son, Craig Ahrens, her daughter, Hope Ahrens, and her daughter’s boyfriend, Terence Singleton, were at the apartment. According to officers, after they identified themselves, they asked appellant whether she knew why they were there, to which she replied, “This is about Buddy, isn’t it?” Appellant consented to a search of the apartment and her car. During the search, officers collected in the apartment, among other things, a wooden baseball bat, an aluminum baseball bat, handcuffs, and pieces of bloodstained carpet. They also collected carpet from the trunk of appellant’s car. Based on O’Malley’s statement and their discovery at the Ahrens apartment, the officers arrested all four. While in custody, appellant and Craig each voluntarily waived their rights and gave statements regarding Musso’s murder.
According to appellant’s and Craig’s statements, as well as trial testimony, Musso was a 59-year-old mentally retarded man living in New Jersey in 1998 when he met Suzanne Basso. In June 1998, Musso came to Houston, Texas to live with Basso and her son, O’Malley. Suzanne Basso and O’Malley were friends with appellant and her children. On June 22, 1998, Musso signed a Last Will and Testament leaving his property and insurance benefits to Basso. Appellant, O’Malley, and Terence Singleton signed the will as witnesses.
Beginning on Friday, August 21, 1998 and continuing until his death, on about Tuesday, August 25, 1998, Musso was denied food, made to sit all night with his knees on a mat and his hands on the back of his neck, and subjected to a series of violent beatings administered by Craig and Hope Ahrens, Basso, O’Malley, and Singleton. Many of the beatings took place in Suzanne Basso’s apartment. The beatings inflicted on Musso included being hit with a belt, baseball bats, hands, fists, feet, and other hard objects, and being kicked with boots. Appellant admitted that she struck Musso one time, claiming it was because he had hit a little girl appellant was babysitting. As a result of the beatings, Musso died in appellant’s apartment late Tuesday night. To cover up his death, Suzanne Basso suggested they use appellant’s car and drive to a location where Musso’s body could be disposed of. Appellant suggested they place Musso’s body in the trunk. After Musso’s body was cleaned, appellant assisted in placing his body in the trunk and, later, in leaving him on the embankment where he was later discovered.
Lab tests of the evidence recovered from appellant’s apartment revealed that there was blood on the carpet taken from the hallway, blood and hair on the wooden bat and blood on the aluminum bat recovered from appellant’s apartment, blood on the bumper of her car, and blood on most of the items found in the garbage bag recovered from the dumpster. At trial, there was testimony that Musso had lost 25-30 pounds by the time of his death. Among the numerous injuries the medical examiner detailed were fractured ribs, a broken nose, a skull fracture, cigarette burn marks, and bruises resulting from blunt force trauma extending from the bottom of Musso’s feet to his upper torso, including his genitals, eyes, and ears. Blood was discovered in Musso’s oral cavity and windpipe. The examiner further testified that the cause of most of the injuries was consistent with Musso’s being beaten with hard objects. The cause of death was determined to be multi-blunt-force trauma.
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Suzanne Basso was executed by lethal injection on February 5, 2014
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Suzanne Basso was executed for the murder of a mentally disabled man
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