In Her Own Words
by Darlie Routier
The following is an account of events that occurred on the night of June 6, 1996, at the home of Darin and Darlie Routier in Rowlett, Texas as recalled by Darlie Routier in her own words.
Also included is an evidence list compiled by Darlie and a diagram of her wounds. The original letter was received March 12th, 1997, and is in the possession of M. W. Smith of Dallas, Texas. The letter was transcribed verbatim* from the original handwritten letter, and includes illustrations drawn by Darlie from her cell on death row in Gatesville, Texas.
*There have been minor grammatical corrections to portions of the text.
June 6th, 1996
The boys were asleep on the floor with their pillows and blankets. Darin brought me a pillow and blanket from upstairs. Around 1:00 a.m. Darin and I decided to go to sleep. Darin turned off all the lights but the T.V. was on. Darin told me that he loved me and would see me in the morning and I told him I loved him too. I asked him to make sure the door was locked on his way upstairs — he said he already checked it and it was — five minutes later I fell asleep. Next thing I remember — Damon runs into my right shoulder and says “mommy.” I sat straight up and saw a “blur” of a man between my couch and kitchen bar (Fig. 1-1).
I stood up and Damon walked behind me. I heard glass breaking. When I got to the entrance of the kitchen, I saw man going into my utility room (Fig. 1-2).
I took a couple of steps and remembered lights were off went back and turned lights on, I started to walk through kitchen and noticed blood on my nightgown, about to my chest, halfway across the kitchen I saw knife laying on utility room floor, instinctively I went over and picked up knife, doesn’t seem like there was much blood on the knife, I went back through the kitchen and put knife on kitchen bar. Damon was still standing by living room wall. I walked into living room and saw Devon’s eyes open and wounds on his chest, Devon wasn’t moving and I started screaming, I went to Damon and began checking him and saw stab wounds through his shirt, I was hysterical but I was trying to think. I told Damon to lay on his belly and I told him to hang on and be strong — Damon said “O-K mommy.” I ran into hallway to our entrance, turned on the lights and kept screaming. Darin, my husband, came out of our bedroom — he only had his pants and glasses on. Darin ran down the stairs and we ran together into the hallway. Darin went to the left, into family room and over to Devon, the table by Devon was completely knocked over. I went to the right to kitchen and grabbed phone to call 911.
I went to second drawer and got towels. I could see Darin starting to perform CPR on Devon. I went to sink and about that time 911 lady came on. I was screaming and got towels wet (when I turned around I could see my neck slit in mirror behind wine rack and said this to the 911 lady) I was screaming. I ran over to Damon pulled up his shirt and layed (sic) a towel on his back, I ran over to Darin and could see blood coming out of Devon’s wound when Darin blew into Devon’s mouth, I didn’t know what to do so I held a towel on Devon’s wound. I was still on the phone while I did all this. I was soaked with blood by this time and very dizzy — I ran to front door to scream for my neighbor, Karen (she is a nurse), and I remember the bolt on the door not being turned and locked. I ran back and got another towel to put on my neck. I was screaming and running back and fourth (sic) and still on the phone. I stopped by the kitchen bar in living room where there was my vacuum, I felt so dizzy and I held myself up on the vacuum. An officer came in and stood by my son Damon, I hung up the phone and dropped to the floor. I screamed for my husband to check on Drake (our baby) Darin did & came back and said he was O-K, Darin then went out front door to get neighbors. a second officer arrives and I tell both officers a man went out the utility room, the officers proceeded to go into kitchen into utility
room. Darin came back in and said both our babies were dead, I fell down again and kept screaming who would do this, I was so dizzy and hysterical. Two paramedics came — one went to Devon, the other to Damon. I grabbed Damon’s shirt and the paramedic wouldn’t tell me he was dead, then he took Damon out of the house. Two paramedics came to me and I stood up and then I passed out.
Next thing I remember I’m on the front porch and Karen is by my side, I thought I was dying and I made her promise to find the man that killed my babies and she did. Karen then went into house. So many people were running in and out of the house and I felt so dizzy. I remember one paramedic telling me my necklace was stuck in my throat and he couldn’t remove it. then my husband asked me where my panties were and I realized they were gone. Next thing I’m in the ambulance and I couldn’t breathe and they put oxygen on me. Then I remember being in the ER and someone taking off my necklace and that’s when I began to feel the pain, it hurt so bad, I begged them to make the pain stop and finally they said they had to operate and they put me under.
Next thing I remember waking up a crying and screaming my babies were dead, there were two officers asking me questions about my husband and the man I saw. I told them all I could remember. I don’t remember any of the days I was in the hospital except the last day (Saturday) The nurse came in and gave me a shower and kept telling me how bad my arms looked and did I remember anything, and I told her I couldn’t remember but thought I struggled or fought the man. then I got to hold my baby and they quit giving me shots of pain medicine and gave me pills instead. Two officers were there and said they were going to take Darin and I into the P.D. before the boy”s viewing so they could get statements from us. My husband and I didn’t think anything of it. The officers got us to the P.D. around 5:00 p.m., separated us and made us talk about what happened. We were supposed to be at the viewing at 6:00 p.m. and it was about 6:30 when Detective Patterson asked me to give a written statement. I was very upset and crying and told him we were late to be with our little boys and couldn’t we do this another day. Patterson told me it was very important to do it then. Finally about 8:00 p.m. they drove my husband and I to the funeral home. I was very heavily medicated and really don’t remember much, I walked into the room with my husband and saw my
babies holding hands in the casket and fell a little and laid on the casket, I kept screaming and crying, I couldn’t stop. My boys looked so beautiful and innocent but they were cold when I kissed them. I fixed their hair and I just wanted to die. People started coming into the room and after about thirty minutes I almost passed out so someone sat me on the couch and helped me. I didn’t want to leave but my husband said we had to. I don’t remember where we slept that night. The next day we had the funeral. I don’t remember much except everyone kept telling me my babies were in heaven and I got angry because they were too little to be in heaven. There were so many people but I just wanted to be left alone. We sent balloons in the air with Devon and Damon’s name and had a plane fly over the funeral for them. I don’t remember much else except we wanted to put flowers at our home around the fountain from the funeral and (Detective) Patterson said ‘no.’ but everyone took flowers and we all drove over there and did it anyway. We handed them to the officers and the officers put them around the fountain. Someone took us home. I remember laying there, I was too scared to sit by a window or use the restroom or take a shower by myself — someone had to be with me and everyone kept giving
me pills, I just didn’t want to be without my boys. I held my son Drake, in my arms and kept a picture of Devon and Damon every step I took. Sometime that week the detectives wanted Darin and I to come in a give hair samples and fingerprints. We got there at 2:00 p.m. and they ended up keeping us until 9:30 p.m. I was crying and didn’t have my pills, I kept throwing up and Patterson would help me go to the restroom because I kept getting sick but I was scared to be left alone. Patterson asked me about my tatoo and wanted to see it. I showed him. Patterson told me they found this man’s fingerprints and it was only a matter of time. Friday, June 14th, was my son Devon’s birthday. We went to the grave around 12:30 or 1:00 p.m. and had a prayer service. Around 5 or 5:30 p.m. we met the detectives in a grocery store parking lot in Rowlett to sign a release for blood from the night of the incident. Patterson told us they had over 100 leads and they put cameras on our house and they found flesh under my fingernails from the samples they took at the hospital. Later we found this was all a lie. We proceeded from the store to the boy’s grave where we had a birthday party for Devon with all his friends. My little sister bought silly string because my little boys loved it and always played with it. Inside I felt
like I was dying but it was my son’s birthday and I was only thinking of him. I wasn’t celebrating his death, I was honoring his life, yet I have been persecuted for this. It’s absurd.
On the 18-19 they (the detectives) called us and told us they had a retired policeman who was going to help us. So around 7:00 p.m. we went to the Rowlett P.D. They put me in a room with a man named Bill Parker and for two hours they tried to brainwash me that I blacked out in my sleep and did this crime and only imagined the man. I told him he was crazy and he told me I was under arrest — after he told me this I became hysterical and he tried to calm me down and after another hour of him trying to get me to confess to something I know I didn’t do, I told him I wanted to do hypnosis, but they wouldn’t allow me to have anyone I knew there while I did it so I said forget it and then I want my lawyer. They arrested me while they smoked their cigars and gave their news reports — they were so proud of themselves — they make me sick.
The following is a list of evidence/testimony compiled by Darlie Routier. The footnotes have been added as additional commentary.
1. It was said “no intruder” because mulch in backyard wasn’t disturbed. There is concrete from the gate to completely under window intruder came in.
2. It was said “no intruder” because window sill dust was undisturbed. During the trial, the “state” made a replica of the window and had it brought in the courtroom. The (they) had an officer of 6’2″ step in and out of window 3 or 4 times and never once did he touch the sindowsill and ironically he touched the window inthe same exact spots where the two unidentifiable fingerprints were found.
3. It was said there was blood under glass in kitchen – yeah because 15-20 people stomped through the glass crushing it and kicking it everywhere.
4. The media reported the window was cut from the inside, when the tests were conducted, the window had been cut from outside.
5. It was said they found a fiber on knife in our butcher block (a bread knife) was similar to screne (sic) but they couldn’t tell us if it was definite or where on the knife the fiber was found.
6. The said bloody footprints were found under vacuum and vacuum was “planted” – we all know someone moved the vacuum out of the way during all the chaos.
7. They (investigators) say sock was “planted” down alley — that’s crazy — We didn’t even know about the sock until about a month after I was arrested.
8. They say we had financial problems, yet all our bills were current and in June we had over $8,000.00 in our account — they produced a late statement found in our trash can — in the trash because it had already been paid.
9. They said I was depressed because I was fat — Well I weighed 133 lbs. when this happened 5’5″ — I thought I looked pretty good, besides that, what does that have anything to do with this?
10. My husband and I were very happily married — no affairs — they found a couple of sex toys in our bedroom. I’m not going to feel bad for loving my husband.
11. I was called a bad mother because I let my boys play outside — well they were children and they loved to play outside with all their friends and my house was the only home where all the children were allowed to play inside. I watched and loved all the children.
12. I was called a bad mother because I didn’t wear a bra — pl-lease
13. Some of the nurses claim I did (not) act appropriate – I don’t even hardly remember the hospital and I didn’t know there was a “rule-book” for grieving. Also some nurses said they did not see the bruises on my arms. That’s a complete lie — everyone that saw me in the hospital said they saw my bruises.
14. The police planted illegal “bugs” at the graveyard.
15. The officers said they found a small amount of marijuana in our home, yet the (sic) forgot to tell the jury they tested my hair and blood for drugs and found nothing — the maraijuana wasn’t even mine.
16. The officers didn’t want anyone to hear about the black car that had been watching my home for a week and on the day of the attack the black car was seen in our driveway looking in our garage.
17. The prosecutors kept 675 pictures from us which we are still trying to get.
18. The officers put wet, bloody evidence in bags all together.
19. Half of the testing was done at a lab called Gene Screen — We found out Gene Screen is under investigation on 400 cases of tested evidence.
20. My wounds were a total of:
- Neck slit one side to other.
- Two stab wounds on right forearm.
- One stab wound on left cheek.
- Cut on left cheek.
- Cut across left fingers and thumb.
- Lips torn up.
- Red and purple mark and (on) right breast.
- Bruises on inside of right arm covering entire arm up to armpit and inside of left arm halfway up and bruises completely around wrists.
Everything is in medical report and documented by pictures.
21. They never found my oldest son Devon’s blood on the knife, only mine and Damon’s.
22. They said they found 4 tiny spots of my boys (blood) on my
- Left side mixed mine & Devons
- Right side mixed mine & Damons
- Right side Devon
- Neck & back Devons
Now according to the experts my blood was mixed with my boys which means I had to have been bleeding when I supposedly stabbed them. So how in the world did I manage to get out of my home and travel 75 feet down the alley to “plant” this sock and never leave a trail of blood from my wounds?
23. Also, there is a time frame. My son Damon was stabbed and was estimated he could have lived at maximum 9 minutes. Well I called 911 at 2:31 was off at 2:36 almost 2:47 (2:37) The officers went and got paramedics that took almost a minute(s) and paramedic said Damon died when he got to him okay. So that’s over 7 minutes leaving me a little over a minute(s) to run sock down alley and clean up fingerprints and cut screen and turn over furniture — no way
24. They said I couldn’t have gotten cut on couch because there were no cuts on couch — Yet my pillow were (sic) I was asleep had my blood all over it. Why would there have to be cuts in my couch — that doesn’t even make sense.
25. There were 3 stab cuts in my nightshirt on my right shoulder but no cuts in my skin. A top leading pathologist said this is always seen in stabbing because there is usually a struggle and clothing is grabbed while try(ing) to hold and stab. Plus, I am right handed, why would I stab my clothes?