Death Row Inmate Closer to Execution for Murder of Wichita Falls Woman

A death row inmate is now closer to getting an execution date set for the murders of a pregnant Wichita Falls woman and her 7-year-old son in 2005.

Stephen Barbee, now 46, has lost his final state appeal for the suffocation deaths of 34-year-old Lisa Underwood and her son Jayden in their Fort Worth home.

Underwood grew up in Wichita Falls and attended Rider High School. Prosecutors allege Barbee did not want his wife to find out Underwood was pregnant with his son, though DNA tests later proved Barbee was not the baby's father.

She was reported missing the day before friends were giving her a baby shower, and authorities say Barbee led them to their bodies in a shallow grave in Denton County.

Barbee appealed his death sentence, on grounds he did not receive a fair trial because of a secret deal between his attorney and the trial judge.

The lower court ruled against the appeal, and now the state court of criminal appeals has affirmed that ruling.

An execution date will be set by the trial court, unless attorneys file habeas corpus appeals and then attorneys have federal avenues of appeals still to pursue. 

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