EAST TEXAS (TYLER MORNING TELEGRAPH) - Pleading for her life, a Rusk woman in September 2002 told her attackers she had two small children at home, but her pleas were not met with compassion.
Instead, a .20-gauge shotgun was put inches from her face, and the man holding the gun pulled the trigger.
Mrs. Dement said when Vandever and her co-worker were released from the trunk of the vehicle after she had been sexually assaulted, the three were told they soon would be freed. But that did not happen.
Cobb and Adams told all three to kneel down in the remote field, and the two women were then tied up.
Cobb then fired a fatal shotgun blast, striking Vandever, and then Adams allegedly grabbed the gun and fired, hitting Mrs. Dement in her left shoulder.
"We were kneeling there and praying, and Kenneth was saying he just wanted to go home and take his medicine. Then there was a shotgun blast, and Kenneth started screaming 'They hit me, they hit me,'" she said. "Then I was shot."
Vandever suffered from a serious brain injury in a car accident when he was a teenager. His father described him as childlike.
Mrs. Dement said when she fell forward, so did her co-worker, and the two laid facing each other.
Then Cobb shot her, pulled her up by her hair and threw her back to the ground.
With the help of the women, law enforcement were able to apprehend the two men the following day at a home in Jacksonville, bringing an end to the pair's string of violent robberies in Cherokee County that took place during the month prior to the murder of Vandever and the attacks on the women.
Vandever's family agreed to release a photo of him to the media.
Tyler Morning Telegraph reporter Kenneth Dean will be reporting from Huntsville during the execution of Richard Cobb.