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STARKE, Fla. (AP) -- A man has been executed in Florida for raping and killing a 9-year-old boy 18 years ago, a death that spurred the victim's parents to press nationwide for stronger sexual predator confinement laws.

Authorities say 46-year-old Juan Carlos Chavez was pronounced dead at 8:17 p.m. Wednesday after a lethal injection at Florida State Prison.

Chavez abducted Jimmy Ryce at gunpoint after the boy got off a school bus on Sept. 11, 1995, in rural southwestern Miami-Dade County. Testimony showed Chavez raped the boy, shot him when he tried to escape, then dismembered his body.

Ryce's parents turned the tragedy's pain into a push for stronger U.S. laws regarding confinement of sexual predators and improved police procedures in missing child cases.