Ladd’s first capital crime occurred in 1978, when he killed a woman and her two small children then set the woman’s house on fire. Ladd served only 16 years of a 40-year sentence for those crimes before being paroled. Then, in 1996, he killed another woman by beating her with a hammer, strangling her, then setting her body on fire. Afterward, Ladd stole a TV, jewelry, and other small household items and traded them for crack cocaine.
Since Texas did away with special last meal requests, condemned prisoners are served the same food as others in their unit. That means a Texas inmate’s last meal is a real coin toss; will the dying prisoner get something good, or will the Texas prison system’s notorious chicken patties rear their ugly head?
In Ladd’s case, his last meal of classic comfort food was much better than he deserved. For his last meal, Ladd was served meat loaf, mashed potatoes, tomato gravy, carrots, black eyed peas, and sliced bread, with a choice of water, tea, or punch to drink.