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Serial Killer Murdered by Cellmate at Texas Lockup

Texas prisoner Billy Chemirmir, 50, was serving two life without parole sentences for murder when cellmate Wyatt Ellis Busby killed him on September 19, 2023, during an altercation in their cell at the H.H. Coffield Unit in Tennessee Colony.

Chemirmir was convicted in 2018 of killing Lu Thi Harris, 80, and Mary Brooks, 87, but he allegedly killed more than 20 elderly women between 2016 and 2018. Prosecutors said the suspected serial killer would target the women either in their apartments or independent living complexes and then suffocate them with a pillow and steal their jewelry.

His reign of terror was spoiled by Mary Annis Bartel, 91, who survived his attack and gave police enough of a description to arrest him. Her son Rick Bartel said: “The guy walked in and said ‘Don’t fight me.’ Took her into the bedroom. She laid down on the bed. [He] put a pillow over her, smothered her, left her for dead, took some jewelry, and then left.”

Canny cops initially dismissed Bartel’s story, thinking she must have fallen and in her dizziness conjured up the attacker. But her wedding ring was missing. Chemirmir was found with that the very next day, after tossing a jewelry box into a dumpster that led police to the home where Harris was found dead in her bedroom.

Some victims’ family members were relieved to hear of Chemirmir’s death. The daughter of one, Shannon Dion, said mom Doris Gleason, “died in fear,” so there was “some relief in feeling that [Chemirmir] didn’t get off easily.”

An autopsy said Chemirmir died of “blunt force trauma” from a “knife/edged instrument” used in the killing. Dallas County District Attorney John CreuzotsaidChemirmir was apparently killed after making sexual comments about Busby’s children.  


Sources: AP News, KXAS, WFAA

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