tv 2020 ABC May 13, 2022 9:01pm-11:00pm PDT
after midnight, but it was only >>hen e for the most part they were just another murder. >> shawna hawk. >> debra slaughter. >> each one seen individually. >> here's another homicide. >> two murders in two days. >> who is african american. >> caroline love. michelle stinson. >> another victim to roll out. >> i just talked to her, and now she's dead? >> the patterns of women being killed didn't add up. >> brandi henderson and nine others. >> a murder count possibly totaling 13. >> why didn't police see it sooner? >> all victims of an unknown suspect. >> whoever did this was a ghost. >> danger disguised as a friend. his victims never saw it coming. >> why did it take so long to see a pattern? >> we feel bad we didn't know it sooner. >> it wasn't just police. it was those of the us in the
media and i think the community. >> this young mother killed in the same manner. >> all had been strangled. >> he looked at me and said, we have a serial killer. >> we know if you don't get him off the streets fast, he would do it again. >> i was not going stop until i found out who did this. >> if we only had the little pieces, had we only known what we know now. >> she was one of his victims, too. >> so, this was shawna's first prom. oh, man. i re favorite color. >> shawna hawk was a very beautiful young woman. she went to central piedmont community college. >> all i can tell you about shawna is an incredible human being. >> raised by her mother, single mom at the time. she was industrious, am dibitio
worked, wanted to make something out of herself. >> she was the apple of her mother's eye. >> shawna was born on december 2nd. i was all of 18 years old. the minute they laid her on my chest, eyes locked and she calmed down. >> she was younger than me, but bossy. that's the word, she was bossy. every time i hear "sunshine of my life", that reminds me of her. we were talk about how much we love that song. ♪ you are the sunshine of my life ♪ ♪ that's why i'll always stay around ♪ >> sauna is working her way through college. she's serving fried chicken at bojangles but gets a better job
at taco bell. >> the one reason i allowed her to even get the job, was because it was the most money she'd ever made and she always worked fast food. and she said, mom, i can do it. >> still, her mom is worried. she's worried about the long hours and whether she's going to be able to keep up with her school work. she actually talks with the taco bell manager, a guy named henry wallace. >> i went and met him once. he said, nice to meet you, ms. sumpter. i've hired your daughter, and i think she's going to be great on our team. >> that year february 19th was on a friday. >> dee sumpter refers to that day as horrible friday, but it started out as just any other day at their home on elon street. >> she said, well, i'm gone. i love you. i said, i love you more. and she stuck her head back in the door and said, mom, i love you. i said, baby, i love you more. and then she took off. >> that afternoon, dee gets a
call at work. >> her godson's mother called and said, have you heard from shawna? and i said, no. she said, ms. dee, i'm not trying to say anything, but something's wrong. i don't know what, but something also not right. >> she noticed some unusual things around the house when she came home. her daughter's car was not there. that wasn't unusual, but what was unusual is it was a cold day in february, and shawna's purse was in the house and her winter coat was in the house. >> she's wondering, welsh what's going on? where is she? >> i called her boyfriend and i said, darrell, get over to my house please, now. he's just shaking his head say, this is baffling. i said more than baffling. something is definitely wrong. >> they decided to call the
police and report her as missing. as they were wait for the police to respond, darrell decided to go looking through the house and just check. >> i hear his footsteps. he walks into the bathroom. >> he pulled back the shower curtain and found shawna in the bathtub in a small amount of water, fully clothed, and she was dead. >> the next sound i heard was him, blood-curdling scream. he runs back down the hall. ms. dee, ms. dee, dial 911. she's in the bathtub. >> last thing i remember is seeing them push her out on a gurney doing cpr. >> it was obviously too late at that point. >> subsequently we find out that she was raped and then strangled inside of her bathtub.
>> and that was kind of unusual for us at the time. we did not have a lot of strangulations during the time, homicide investigations. >> strangulation is rare. it's more commonly seen in domestic cases or cases where people have a relationship. >> murder? i couldn't hardly even spell the word murder before shawna was murdered. >> we didn't have any damage to the doors, we didn't have any damage to the windows, so we believe she allowed the assailant to come inside the residence. >> the killer was also meticulous in terms of going into the house, making sure he wiped down anything he may have tuched, so they had no dna, they had no fingerprints. in effect, whoever this did was a ghost.
>> who would want to kill this beautiful, innocent, sweet, kind, loving person? my best friend, my daughter. >> we didn't find anything significant that would draw us to, point us to a spectacular suspect at a time. >> she couldn't have had an enemy. she wasn't that kind of person. >> so after she was found murdered at a home, police tried to locate her car. it was not discovered for weeks and when it was discovered it was found at a parking lot at central piedmont community college. >> the front seat was pushed back, and shawna was short, so i think the only thing they took away from that is it had to be somebody that was taller than shawna. >> in the course of their investigation, police are missing something important. eight months earlier, a young woman by the name of caroline love disappeared, and it turns out that caroline and shawna were friends.
>> something ain't right. they need to go back and look at what happened to caroline, because caroline's missing and now here shawna is dead. >> what's coming is an incredibly rude awakening. >> there's some decomposition p >> for the charlotte police department. >> what soon followed was a wave of death and grief unlike anything this town has ever seen. i have moderate to sevee plaque psoriasis. now, there's skyrizi. ♪ things are getting clearer ♪ ♪ yeah, i feel free ♪ ♪ to bare my skin ♪ ♪ yeah, that's all me ♪ ♪ nothing and me go hand in hand ♪ ♪ nothing on my skin, that's my new plan ♪ ♪ nothing is everything ♪ had lasting clearance through 1 year. in another study, most people had 90% clearer skin at 3 years. and skyrizi is 4 doses a year, after 2 starter doses.
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♪ the best way to describe charlotte in the early '90s would be is that it was growing extremely fast. >> charlotte was at the beginning of its banking boom. >> johnson from 20. >> after the charlotte hornets got here, i think that's when everyone started using the term "world-class city." the skyline seemed like it changed every three to four months. >> charlotte was booming. a lot of steel and glass and a lot of looking upward. maybe not enough looking down. >> police are pointing out the drug dealers. >> at what was happening on the ground. >> drugs are a problem in every large city in america. >> in the neighborhoods and in communities. >> police say that this is what they call a crack house. >> we were headed towards one of our highest murder rates in the city's history. >> on the legitimate side, banking was the growth industry. on the criminal side, drugs was the growthndustry.
>> gun was found behind the esalr wig >> it was a very, very violent period of time. in fact, i would say it was the most violent period in charlotte's history. >> members of the violent mustang gang were arrested. >> in the '90s, we were not equipped to handle the murder rate. we had maybe eight homicide detectives, but only six were actively working. >> it was almost like they were having to work homicides like car accidents. >> it's in the '90s in charlotte, north carolina. skyscrapers are going up, but at the same time, a series of crimes are unfolding. 20-year-old shawna hawk is found strangled in her bathtub, and her friend and coworker caroline love has vanished. >> caroline love went missing in june of 1992. >> caroline lived in east charlotte. i lived in west charlotte. and we all worked together at bojangles. >> the love sisters, kathy and caroline, worked at bojangles
with henry wallace, who was shawna hawk's boss at taco bell. >> she was a really fun person. she always had, like, a really cute boyfriend. >> she didn't show up for work. >> this don't sound like her. you know, something's definitely wrong. >> i know my mom, i remember her calling, like, everybody. she called everybody in our family. like, have you seen her? is she over here? >> it was like she just disappeared off the face of the earth. >> she was living with this young lady by the name of sadie mcknight. >> sadie mcknight and her boyfriend, henry wallace, helped file the report for the missing person of caroline love. >> kathy, henry, and sadie are the ones who went to the police station to file the police report. >> shawna had the news on, and she said, mommy, caroline is missing. something is wrong. it's not like her just not to come to work and not call me or call work or say something. >> when shawna hawk is murdered, police don't immediately tie
that to the disappearance of caroline love, but there is a connection. >> before taco bell, shawna had worked at bojangles with caroline. >> she and shawna were close friends. they were in high school together. they worked together. they were buddies. they hung out together. >> my mom was on it. she was like, there's no way that within a year that caroline's missing and then now one of her good friends is dead. >> they always remained hopeful that she would be found alive and okay. >> i thought so many times that she was gonna come back. i remember even when searching for her, i had these two little dresses, and i wore them because i wanted to look nice, you know -- i wanted to look nice in case she showed up. >> four months after shawna hawk was murdered, another young lady, audrey spain, turns up
murdered as well. >> i think this is one of my favorites. >> audrey was, um, a free spirit. she lived life on her terms. >> spirited. [ laughs ] adventurous, positive, a hard worker. >> audrey spain was another young, attractive black female who also worked at taco bell. >> i do remember receiving a call from audrey's manager telling me that she had missed going to work that particular day and that he was concerned. >> so they actually sent the manager or the maintenance people to her apartment complex, and when they entered the apartment complex, in her apartment, they found her deceased on the bed. >> i don't know how much information they actually gave us at that time.
i just remember that she had been murdered. she had been strangled. there was a rape also. >> it was devastating. it's just not something that you ever expect to have to deal with. audrey was my younger sister, and we grew up together, so it -- it was very difficult. >> what did i miss? how did this happen? and you're totally blindsided. yeah. totally. >> the interesting thing about that crime scene was that the thermostat had been -- it was the summer months -- had been turned way down. >> the crime scene techs, when they got there, were shivering. >> that's because the air conditioning had been cranked to slow down the decomposition process. >> apparently, her body had been
there for at least two days. >> in the first 6 months of 1993, shawna hawk and audrey spain have been strangled to death. >> before shawna was murdered, a friend of hers, caroline love, had vanished. even so, the detectives have no clue that these cases are connected. >> i just don't feel like they knew. maybe she was random, maybe not. >> these cases never came together because there were other detectives working it, and not just one. and so we had very little information to go on at the time to try to link it with any of the other homicides. >> we just knew that we had another young black woman who was found murdered. >> we have a possible serial killer working in the shadows, but do we know that? we have no idea. >> in the months ahead, more charlotte women will fall victim to strangulation and murder. but the killer will make a mistake, giving police a glimpse
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a free streaming box, and add xfinity mobile. switch today. 1993 is the year of living dangerously in charlotte. >> caroline love, shawna hawk, audrey spain. >> peak murder rates, and somebody is killing young black women. >> it was earlier this afternoon when a family friend found the body of the woman. >> it was september of '93. we were called out to a home where a woman's body had been found. >> when police got to this apartment off of marvin road, they found two very frightened children. >> michelle, yeah, i was there. vividly remember michelle stinson. here's a young woman who had
been murdered inside of her own home with her children present. michelle stinson was killed in front of her two children. >> a friend drops by to visit michelle. >> he looked in the windows and saw one of her little boys playing. and, you know, was banging on the window. >> where's your mommy? you know, where is she? and they tell him, well, mommy's asleep on the floor. >> and he was getting ready to leave when the little boy opened the door, and he went in. >> he finds her dead on the kitchen floor. >> there were signs of strangulation. but her cause of death was four stab wounds. >> as michelle stinson's bloodied body was taken away, those who knew her said goodbye with tears and tried to make sense of it all. >> my goodness, what person, what monster, could take the life of a mother in front of
their children? >> police say that there is no sign of forced entry. and that indicates that perhaps michelle knew her killer and invited him in. despite that, they fail to find any viable leads or suspects. >> michelle stinson's case, like shawna hawk and audrey spain, and the still-missing caroline love, goes unsolved. >> you can't even stay at home and be safe anymore. >> for some unknown reason, they just couldn't connect the dots. >> dee sumpter's a remarkable woman. yes, her heart broke, but her will didn't. >> dee sumpter went on a public campaign to call attention to her daughter's death. >> it's better knowing. >> and she turned what was the worst possible situation into something extremely positive for this community when she, along with shawna's godmother,
judy williams, started an organization called mothers of murdered offspring, which is still here. >> i just knew i had a daughter who was murdered and it wasn't being investigated properly. i was appalled by that, angered by it, and i was not going to stop until i found out who did this. >> they felt that the police department or the city didn't care enough because they were young black women. >> dee sumpter, whose daughter shawna was on that list of victims, still wonders, what if some of the faces were white instead? >> every time another youngster was murdered, there was dee calling the press, going after the police, saying, what are you going to do to help us? >> she was turning up the heat on the police. >> they particularly attacked the police each and every day about what we were doing and what we were not doing. because they thought that we should be doing more, and we
were telling them that we couldn't do any more than what we had. we were overworked and we were understaffed, but we were doing the best that we could. >> dear killer, i am the mother of shawna denise hawk. >> she wrote a letter to the editor calling out the person who took her daughter's life. >> something in me said, he's got to have some type of a -- a heart. it might be a dark heart, but it's a heart. please, please, please come forward and turn yourself in to the authorities so justice can for wived and so you can get th. eternally doomed. can i have a moment, please?
>> dee sumpter's letter appears in "the charlotte observer." and in the same day's paper, a brief article -- a woman in charlotte found dead in her apartment. here we go again, another victim. >> in the mornings, when vanessa mack had to go to work, her babysitter would come here to her house to pick up her 4-month-old daughter. >> a young lady by the name of vanessa little mack was murdered in her home. >> i said, vanessa, i said, get up. you know, like that. and then she didn't move and she didn't say anything. so i turned the bedroom light on, and i said, oh, god. >> vanessa mack was killed in february of 1994, almost to the day that shawna hawk had been killed a year earlier. >> blood was on her face, and a towel was around her neck. >> her baby daughter, just yards away, was okay. police believe the infant was in the home when her mother was
killed. >> vanessa mack was a hospital worker. >> just an honest, hardworking young lady doing the best that she can to provide for her family. >> i don't know why would have did it, because she was a good girl. she didn't bother nobody. >> vanessa little mack's cause of death was once again ligature strangulation. >> there is a link to previous killings, but police don't seem to notice it at the time. >> vanessa mack had a sister who worked at taco bell. so, again, the correlation of another person working with somebody at a taco bell. >> we started looking for financial card records and discovered that a bank card was missing from the scene. >> they got her banking history and found that her teller card had been used unsuccessfully. >> in her final moments,
vanessa mack tricks her killer, giving him the wrong pin to her atm card. >> she had made it up. it wasn't the correct password, so that's why he couldn't get into her account. she still fought back. she didn't give him everything he wanted. >> there were security cameras on the atm. >> so we looked at the security camera footage, and we could possibly say that it was a male of dark-skinned complexion. >> but it wasn't a great picture. there wasn't a lot to go on. >> the only thing you could see in the photograph was his ear. >> and we did see an earring in the figure of a cross at that time. >> a hoop cross earring. only thing the photograph showed. >> but that killer wearing a gold cross earring is about to make another mistake, revealing his identity. ♪♪ hi neighbor.
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like a beast sitting, waiting for a prey, just waiting to go and hurt someone. >> it's march 1994 in the city of charlotte, and someone has gotten away with murdering four women in a year's time. >> my goddaughter was one of the victims, shawna. >> shawna hawk found strangled in her home last february, and then two weeks ago, vanessa little mack also strangled. >> all black women in their 20s, all strangled to death in their own home. >> something's not right here,
you know? something is not right. >> i mean, it's one question i want to have for the police department. why hadn't they shown a real interest? and i really felt that we'd been neglected. >> all being investigated as seemingly unconnected. that is about to change in one single deadly day at the same apartment complex. >> the lake apartments. and i would refer to them as the infamous lake apartments, because if there is any location in this town that's affiliated with these cases, that's the location. >> the next victim is in march 9th of '94, 18 year-old brandi henderson, a young mom. >> she was funny. she loved to joke around.
she sang off-key, but she thought that she could sing, and we just let her do it. >> brandi lives with her boyfriend, lamar woods, and their 10-month-old son, tyrece. >> brandi told me that when she had tyrece that she felt like her life was complete. she felt like she had made a masterpiece. >> one night in march, brandi calls her cousin george asking him to come over and hang out. >> she was like, well, i've got some chinese food that i ordered in from take out. why don't you just come over? come on over. you know, come see me. and i said, well, it's already 8:00. i'm tired. i've been working all day. i got to get up early tomorrow. she said, oh, come on, come on, come on. >> they're talking on the phone. then there's a knock on the door. the phone call was interrupted and she said someone was at the door. >> and i heard her in the background saying, just make sure you lock the door behind you. i didn't worry about who was there because she said "lock the door behind you." so she trusted him.
>> late that night, brandi's boyfriend comes home from work. >> the first thing he notices that sort of catches his eye is that -- kind of like the lights are off, which is a little bit unusual because he knows brandi is home. >> he turns on the light. the apartment's been trashed. >> his stereo is missing. the place has been robbed. >> so he starts checking around, and he finds his kid and notices the kid is not really breathing normally. so then he's like, what's going on here? >> someone has tied a pair of shorts around 10-month-old tyrece's neck. this child is struggling to breathe. >> he runs to help him. he unties the things around his neck and then finds brandi. >> brandi was in the bedroom lying on the bed with a ligature around her neck. >> you're watching as this
woman's body is being carried downstairs, knowing her child has been injured, possibly gravely. and luckily, he survived. >> the next morning, as soon as i turned the news on -- >> we don't have a significant break anywhere in the case. we're still hoping somebody may come forward with information. >> they had a stretcher rolling across the sidewalk in front of her apartment. and i knew at that time that it was real, and i just lost it. because i just could not comprehend that i had just talked to her, and now she's dead? >> the killer stole not only the stereo, but a pringles can of coins that brandi had been saving up. >> however this suspect got in here, apparently he was let in or had access to get in on his own.
>> right at this moment, detectives get an urgent radio call. they're needed back at the lake apartments. >> another woman is found strangled. >> i could not believe that the next day we're back at the same apartment complex where another woman is found dead in her apartment. and this woman is betty jean baucom. she's 24 years old. she has a 3-year-old daughter. >> betty baucom, who lived somewhere in those same apartments, worked at bojangles. >> betty never did anything wrong to anybody. she's always trying to help people. i mean, it just really hit us hard here. >> the stuff hit the fan. it was crazytown, man. everybody was over there. it seemed like there was 10,000 police, cops over there. iewg ho were racing into the apartment complex. >> we came here to make sure that my girlfriend was safe, because her husband is at work and her and her daughter is home alone. >> did this concern you when you heard this?
>> yes, it did. i mean, it's unbelievable. >> the fear that it stoked was just insane. >> i grew up in new york and i thought this was going to be, like, you know, a safe haven out here. and apparently there is no safe haven anymore. >> so, now we have a major problem. now we have two young ladies in the same apartment complex have been found murdered. and there's a lot of conversation. >> i was in court and saw one of the homicide detectives. and i asked him, you know, what's going on? and that was the first i heard. he looked at me and he said, we think we have a serial killer. >> police worry this could be a serial strangler. >> betty jean baucom's car has been stolen. >> we're looking for a vehicle now of the latest victim, and we believe the suspect has probably fled in it. >> so, during this time, you know, we have an a.p.b. out for betty baucom's car. and we're looking city-wide for
the car. >> police found the car in this parking lot, and actually it's right across the street from the apartment complex where the women were found murdered. >> on the floor of betty's car is a pringles can stolen from brandi henderson. >> so that connects the two murders at the lake apartments. whoever killed betty and stole her car must have also killed brandi and stolen her coins. >> tonight police aren't taking any chances at all. they're setting up perimet all around the lake apartments. >> investigators say they need more information quickly. >> you know if you don't get him off the streets fast, he could do it again. >> use caution, be careful, and think before you open the door. >> the killer is out there somewhere, and they feel certain if given the chance, he could strike again. if you don't stain your deck, it's like the previous owner is still hanging around. previous owner: "laughs"
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>> it's the shock of recognition that comes out when a community realizes there's been a killer in its midst. >> so, now we have a major problem. now we have two young ladies in the same apartment complex have been found murdered. the media has now been involved. >> be careful letting them into your house. if there's some doubt at all, you feel nervous with the person that may be coming to your door, don't hesitate.
call 911. >> everybody's in an uproar, everybody in a panic. >> the city was on edge, you know, just fear all over the whole city. >> it was scary. it was scary. i can remember calling some friends that i know on that side of town and say, hey, be careful. >> investigators say they need more information quickly. the young women were murdered in the same apartment complex, and their killer is still out there somewhere. >> minutes before brandi henderson was murdered at the lake apartments, she had she said, hold on, hold on. somebody's at the door. and i heard her in the background saying, just make sure you lock the door behind you. >> the day after the murder, george says he stops over at a neighbor's apartment. >> as i walked in, to my left
sat henry wallace, watching the tv. i had seen henry wallace at brandi and her boyfriend's house. i had met him one time. >> by daylight, detectives were back at the lake apartments with another murder on their hands. >> the news came on. so, we started watching the news, and it was about brandi's murder. >> investigators say whoever killed these women was cold-bloodedly calm, spending a lot of time in each of their apartments. >> i felt this on my shoulder. i felt a pat, like, you know, i'm so sorry. and he was looking at the tv and watching the gurney go across the sidewalk with her body, and his eyes just glow -- he was just glowing, just, you know, like, amazed. like he was excited. and i could just see that in his eyes, like, he was just fixed on the tv. >> brandi henderson's 10-month-old baby was also attacked and left for dead.
>> and he's like, i'm so sorry what happened to your cousin. and henry said, she was, she was always there with her baby by herself. when somebody would come in, she would say lock the door behind them. i had that flashback to when i was speaking to her and she said, "just make sure you lock the door behind you." and i knew at that moment that it was him. i said, "oh, my word, he killed her." >> george says he immediately told a police officer about his suspicion, but he says the officer blew him off. >> by then, they knew that they had a serial killer on their hands. and they needed to find him quickly. but they didn't find him quickly enough. >> as they're processing all of this with betty jean and brandi henderson being murdered at the lakes apartments, one more person is found murdered about a mile away, and her name
is debra ann slaughter. >> she loved t she had a very contagious laugh. she also had a beautiful voice. she and i both grew up singing in church together. ♪ i remember boyz ii men came on the radio, singing "the end of the road." ♪ it's unnatural you belong to me ♪ >> i just remember us going, you know -- ♪ to the end of the road ♪ ♪ and i can't let go ♪ [ laughter ] that was the last time we sung together. >> debra slaughter lived in the glen hollow apartments, which were the same apartments that audrey spain lived in. >> henry wallace had also lived
at glen hollow at one time, and debra worked at the bojangles, same place where henry wallace worked. >> and my mother did give us warnings. her exact words is, you know there's this serial killer in charlotte, and i need y'all to be careful. and i would say to debra all the time, you know, be careful. i always told her to be careful. but debra was a tough person, and she just wasn't scared of anything. >> it was this last thursday, the bodies of brandi henderson and betty jean baucom were discovered. two days later, deborah slaughter was found just a mile away. >> at some point after letting this man into her home, debra slaughter comes to a horrifying realization. >> once his attack was on, deborah slaughter made the connection between the recent murders. at that point she said, you're him. so deborah did fight because deborah knew that she was going to die.
>> debra slaughter's case was much more violent than any other victims, and you could tell that there was a big struggle inside the home. she fought for her life. >> lovey slaughter sees it every time she closes her eyes, her daughter's body lying on the dining room floor of her apartment. >> when she knocked on the door, the door just kind of pushed open, and she walked in. >> and when i opened the door and saw her lay on that floor -- >> next thing i know, i look up and i see, um, two firefighters bringing my mother down the stairs, and she's crying. and -- the first thing she said is, debra's gone. she said, she's gone. >> you've got, oh, this person was strangled here. this person was strangled here.
this person was strangled here. huh. >> tonight police aren't taking any chances at all. >> looking back -- >> the killer is out there somewhere. >> for myself as a reporter, i keep thinking, why didn't we start putting two and two together? then you have the police who are trained to do these kind of things. why didn't they do it? >> look closely. police say this is the face of a serial killer. >> who is this man who has confessed to the murders? >> once i touched them, it was over. it was out of my control. it was out of my hands. i couldn't stop it. there was no way i could stop.
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we have a possible serial killer working in the shadows. >> and somebody is killing young black women. all black women in their 20s, all strangled to death in their own home. >> some kind of a bold demon here, one like never before. >> he's hiding in plain sight, and he's doing it very cleverly. he fools everybody. >> he portrayed himself as the big brother, as the good friend. >> and i remember him telling me, it's going to be okay. she's going to come back. >> he hugged me. he knew he had killed her. >> he kind of walked into their life knowing at some point he's going take their lives. >> i didn't want to, but something or somebody was taking over my body.
>> he writes a name, then a second name, then a third name. but he keeps going. >> he was talking about killing women like you're in some sort of boring book club. >> the general tone in charlotte was, why didn't you guys figure this out earlier? >> saying that they didn't prioritize these murders because the victims were black women. >> you guys blew it. how could you miss this? it was this last thursday, the bodies of brandi henderson and betty jean baucom were discovered. two days later, debra slaughter was found just a mile away. >> investigators have now contacted the fbi, trying to set up a profile of the killer. >> use caution, be careful, and think before you open the door. >> we don't have a significant
break anywhere in the case. we're still hoping that somebody may come forward with some information. >> charlotte police are desperate to find this killer. they do get something to work with from brandi henderson's boyfriend, lamar. >> we asked him, who would brandi allow into the home without any problem? and he said henry wallace. >> once the detective on brandi henderson's case got the names of who she would have let into the apartment, he went to see if any of them had any criminal history. henry wallace did. he had a misdemeanor larceny charge. and there was a mug shot of henry wallace. >> that's when detective james stansberry, who's been investigating the vanessa mack case, walks into the room. >> he comes in and he sees the photograph of henry wallace. in that mug shot, henry wallace is wearing a hoop cross earring
in his ear. >> i looked at the photograph, and something hit me. >> the detective remembers that from the atm on vanessa mack's case. >> i saw the earring with the cross. >> and that's similar to the same earring that we saw on the picture of henry wallace arrest photo. >> i see this and say, we may have something here. >> investigators hope this car stolen from baucom spawns new leads. >> betty jean's car is found across the street from the crime scene. nissan pulsar. and that was the biggest break that they've had to date, which was inevitably what led them to their suspect. >> they hit a jackpot. near the trunk area of that car,
where they found a palm print. that palm print matched someone who was already in the system. >> that palm print came back to henry louis wallace. >> so now we're going to look for the person, henry louis wallace. >> march 12th, 1994, around 2:00 in the afternoon, debra slaughter's body is found. three hours later, police locate henry wallace and place him under arrest. >> and when the cops came in, he was -- had the bathroom door shut, had the bathroom door shut. >> hiding in there? >> hiding in there. >> initially, he is not giving up the goods. >> the police sent in literally teams of detectives trying to get him to talk. he was like, i don't know what you're talking about. they sent in two more. i don't know what you're talking about. enter detective tony rice.
>> tony rice goes into the room and started to talk to henry. >> and he said, henry, you mind if we just say a little prayer together? and he actually held henry's hand and said a prayer. >> after the prayer, then tony said, well, now, can you tell me about what happened? >> henry said, give me a piece of paper. and he started writing down all the names of the women. >> he writes a name, then a second name, then a third name, and these are victims that police had already suspected him of murdering. but henry wallace keeps going. another name, another name, another name. a total of ten victims. charlotte police are stunned. >> that was the first the police knew of the depth of how many people he had killed. >> henry, if you would, go ahead and just talk up for me and
state your full name. >> henry louis wallace. >> the police decided to record his confessions. >> shawna hawk, i really didn't have any intentions of doing what i did to shawna. i stopped by to see shawna one day, and she gave me a hug. and when she gave me a hug, i had her real close. and i said, i want you to have sex with me. she said, you're joking, right? i said, no, i'm not. this is not a joke. >> he gave a full confession. that's very unusual. many of them deny it to their dying day, so to speak, but henry wallace didn't. >> i told her to get dressed. i took her to the bathroom. that's where i maneuvered the choke hold on her and -- until she passed out. and then i filled the bathtub with water and placed her in it. >> coldest thing i ever heard in my life.
he was talking about killing women like you're in some sort of boring book club. >> henry wallace admits he raped each of his victims before killing them and usually robbed them. >> but what's really unusual is that henry wallace knew his victims. and they knew him. >> that's what's different -- he knew them, and he had to know them. he couldn't kill a stranger, he said. >> i would always hear the voices of the people that i killed. i would always see them. i would always see a shadow of them. i would always hear their voices. i would always hear that, like, laughter from them. >> shawna hawk's mother, dee sumpter, says that henry wallace actually showed up at shawna's wake. >> i'm thinking this is some kind of a bold demon here, one like never before. had the literal gall to show up at a service for someone that he knew he personally killed.
the thing that makes my blood run cold and sends shock -- shivers up and down my spine was the fact that i saw him after shawna was murdered, and he expressed his condolences. and he hugged me, told me how sorry he was. and he knew he had killed her. >> i wanted to tell her so bad, dee, i killed your daughter. but i was so scared. i was so scared. i just -- i couldn't -- i couldn't do it. >> i mean, to be hugged by your child's murderer, showing up and sending his sympathies -- that is some cold, calculated stuff going on right there. >> we begin to get a bit of a portrait of henry wallace emerging from the photos shown in court. >> he had many strengths in growing up. people liked him, and he was social. >> henry was a great person,
very nice guy. got along well with everyone. >> yearbook photos and schoolmates who spent time with him. >> but he also had some obviously very lethal problems. >> he would have had every opportunity in the world with any of us, you know? he could have easily gotten any of us, but he didn't. if you have type 2 diabetes or high blood pressure you're a target for chronic kidney disease. you can already have it and not know it. if you have chronic kidney disease your kidney health could depend on what you do today. ♪far-xi-ga♪ farxiga is a pill that works in the kidneys to help slow the progression of chronic kidney disease. farxiga can cause serious side effects including dehydration, urinary tract or genital yeast infections in women and men, and low blood sugar. ketoacidosis is a serious side effect that may lead to death. a rare, life-threatening bacterial infection in the skin of the perineum could occur.
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was there satisfaction in that for you? >> i didn't want to, but something or somebody was taking over my body and i couldn't stop even when i tried to stop. >> police y this ifa of a serial killer, a man who choked the life out of neighbors and coworkes. his name is henry louis wallace. >> henry wallace was born and raised in barnwell, south carolina, a small town about three hours south of charlotte.
>> before he became a serial killer, henry wallace was a fast-food manager who had served in the navy, had been married and then divorced. >> the news of his arrest shocked his hometown. >> i still have a hard time believing now that -- that it was -- >> me too. >> -- our henry. >> former classmates and the high school yearbook seem to portray a completely different image than that of a cold-blooded killer. >> henry was a great person, very nice guy. >> he was a good guy. he was fun. he had the biggest smile, the biggest personality. always happy. >> you know, he was the first male cheerleader we ever had. i would've never guessed in a million years that henry had any kind of issues where he would do what he's done, never in a million years. >> he would be the person who's
responsible for more deaths in mecklenburg -- charlotte, mecklenburg than any other person that we came in contact with. >> i think the community was truly stunned. those kinds of cases didn't happen here. charlotte wasn't the kind of place where we would have a serial killer. >> after henry confessed to all of the murders that we believe he did in north carolina, we began to formulate, how are we going to tell the public? >> information indicates that this person was responsible for the murder of ten women in charlotte. >> when we made the announcement, the city ate us alive. the media ate us alive. >> i do remember the police coming out and saying, we have a serial killer, but, you know what? our officers did a great job. >> the investigators worked tremendously hard and did an excellent job on the investigation of all of these ten cases. we're sorry that we did not get
him identified earlier. had we done that, then we maybe could have saved the lives of some of these women. >> the general tone in charlotte was, why didn't you guys figure this out earlier? >> the community became outraged. >> the police was well aware of this a long time ago. >> there were some in the community who criticized the charlotte police, saying that they didn't prioritize these murders because the victims were black women. >> i sat and just cried in my heart and outside, because i wanted that same energy and effort to be extended to my child. there was not a level of caring. this is where the racial disparity comes in. >> we covered dee. we covered her press conferences. one of the things that she made everyone think about and talk about was, if these had been white women who were dying in south charlotte, each killing would have been a huge story. >> race is always a factor in criminal investigations. until america sees that it is not a factor, or we have to
mention it during an interview, race is always going to be a factor. >> all these cases were professionally and competently handled. the -- there was nothing given short shrift. >> one of the other stunning aspects of this case was how well henry wallace knew most of his victims. >> and it seems that fast food restaurants are the common thread that bind wallace to most of his alleged victims. >> everything was right here all along. it's been right here, and they've done everything except look right here. obvious, obvious connections. there's that word again. connecting the dots. in my humble opinion, blatantly ignored. >> it was like, you guys blew it. how could you miss this? >> it's not that we missed this. it's just that we were overwhelmed with the cases. >> during that two-year period that he was killing people, there were approximately 300 people murdered. >> all of those cases were on desks of six homicide detectives
in the '90s. we didn't have the technology. we definitely didn't have the manpower and we definitely didn't have the resources. >> when henry wallace confessed to police, he listed names of people that investigators didn't even know had been murdered. >> well, there is one name in particular on that list that i am certain wasn't on their radar at all, and that is valencia jumper. >> investigators say valencia jumper died in her third floor apartment. they say this also appears to be the unit where the fire started. >> valencia jumper came to charlotte. she was a student at johnson c. smith university. >> henry wallace knew valencia's sister. that was their connection. >> she was found in a house that had caught fire. that didn't fit any patterns before or after. >> it was ruled that maybe she was out drinking with her friends and had too much to
drink, put a pot of beans on the stove to eat, and the fire engulfed the apartment. >> investigators say they suspect valencia jumper was sleeping when the fire in her third floor apartment broke out. they say a pot left on her stove started the fire. >> i went into the kitchen and i opened a can of pork and beans or something. i put it in a pot, put it on the stove, and i turned the stove on high. >> he set the whole scene up that it looked like she fell asleep while she was cooking. >> and i went to her kitchen. i noticed there was a bottle of rum, 151, and i poured the rum all over her body. >> he considered her to be his little sister. >> there were so many things in this case that were missed by various people. the only people who didn't miss.
and her family fought tooth and nail to say, this was not an accidental fire. >> after henry confessed, the medical examiner started re-examining the facts in that case, and one of the thingatth stood out was there was no soot or ash or anything in her throat where she breathed in smoke. >> it should've been ruled that she was dead before the fire started. >> this case haunts me probably the most because of mistakes that were made that, had they not been made, henry wallace would've been charged then. and she was victim number five, where he we wouldn't have had five more. >> henry wallace's confession leaves veteran lorcement shocked and almost caught off guard. but the next thing he does is remarkable.
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they're literally everywhere. there's no need to search. big tobacco, you'll have to answer for your despicable ride, for your wake of destruction. your one little big lie. i knew this day was coming. i mean, i knew, and i wanted it to come, and there have been several times doing the actual crime that i was committing that i wanted to die. i ruined everything, man. >> henry louis wallace knew all of his victims, and they felt comfortable with him because he portrayed himself as the big brother, as the good friend. >> always very polite. >> it's the only neighbor -- male neighbor that i would even let in when my boyfriend wasn't at home. i mean, he was a friend. i trusted him. >> henry was like the perfect human predator.
>> so, he kind of walked into their life knowing that, at some point, he's gonna take their lives. >> you never realize what henry was all about, and by the time you did, it was too late. >> if you would, go ahead and start with the first name that you put on your list there. caroline love, is it? >> caroline love. >> where did you meet caroline? >> caroline, i met her through my girlfriend, sadie. >> and so we go to the board, and we're looking for certain names. and caroline love's name is not on the homicide board. so why is this name on the list? >> caroline love was a woman that went missing in june of '92. she was a friend of wallace's girlfriend at the time. >> remember, shawna hawk and caroline love were friends and they were coworkers.
>> we talked to henry, and he was very forthcoming. and he gave us a lot of information. >> i dumped her body on the left side near where a little ditch, kind of, led from the highway back into the woods. >> you think you could find it again? >> i know i could. >> and so we decided to find caroline love. we put henry in the back of the van, and he directed us out to this remote area of the county, to a field. >> investigators were told exactly where to look for another victim in this bizarre case. >> and it was the skeletal remains of caroline love. >> that tells the cops that this guy is for real. he's the killer because he's the only person who's going to know this. >> we have to tell the public that this case was not a missing person. it's now a homicide. >> painful. i cried all yesterday. i cried all last night. >> caroline's family is even more devastated. this is the same man that went with caroline's sister, kathy,
to file a missing person's report. >> caroline's niece sarah was only 8 years old when her aunt went missing? and who comforted her during that time? henry wallace. >> i remember being in her room with him and sitting on his lap, and i remember being sad and crying. and i remember him telling me, >> the same day that henry is consoling sa, arrive to speak with caroline's family. they have no idea the killer's in their midst listening to every word. >> and in talking to him, he remembered us talking to caroline love's family about her having an orange jumpsuit from bojangles. he said after hearing that conversation, he decided to go back and remove that orange
jumpsuit from her, because if we were looking for it, it would be easily seen by an aerial helicopter or somebody walking by. >> he returned to her body disposal site, which was outside, numerous times. >> i went back a couple of times since then so i would remember where the body was. >> caroline's family, who had held out hope for so long about the fate of their loved one, now have to face the cruel reality that her remains have been found. >> you told me she would come back, but you didn't tell me she would come back like that. i mean, we didn't have anything to go back to. her body was bones. >> back in the interrogation room, detectives ask one final question. >> anything else you can remember, henry? >> that's it. >> anybody else that you can think of in charlotte or anywhere else that anything like
this has ever happened to you before? you lived in south carolina with your mom. anything there that you remember? >> one person. >> can you tell us about her? >> her name was, um, shawn -- shan -- tashanda bethea. they called her shan. >> henry wallace confesses to police that he killed 18-year-old tashanda bethea in 1990 in his hometown of barnwell, south carolina. it's believed that tashanda was his first victim. >> she left home about 5:00 on the 19th, and they reported her missing on the 20th, 'cause she didn't return home. >> she was walking one day. i picked her up, and i told her that we were going out to get some pot. i pulled off to the side of the road into a little ravine area. >> tashanda's body was found two
weeks later by people fishing in a local pond. >> the autopsy results show that she was strangled. >> a few days later, henry wallace is brought in for questioning. >> he was a very strong suspect, but we had nothing on him. he covered his alibis good. >> i was questioned about her death, but i dend . >> after literally getting away with murder, henry wallace moves to north carolina, where he would kill again and again and again. >> it's absolutely devastating. you're sitting there thinking the worst, hoping for the best. an exalyct what the esd at relatives were doing. and unfortunately, it was not a good ending. >> henry wallace, dubbed by some in the media as "the taco bell strangler," confesses to killing 11 women. but the question remains, why? >> two of the fbi's most respected mindhunters want to know what's inside
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for years, the fbi has been developing behavioral profiling techniques, and there's a woman named ann burgess, a professor and author from boston college, who has helped them. >> until we understand what's going on in the mind of the criminal, we're going to have more and more victims. >> she was one of the few women in the fbi at the time doing that work, and i thought it was time to get her story out there. so after a little bit of convincing, she agreed to write this book, "a killer by design." wallace is featured in the book because he was a really interesting case. >> henry wallace was not that we would call him "atypical," but certainly very different from some of the others. people liked him, and he was social. >> burgess was tapped by hnry wallace's defense team to do an analysis on his mind.
>> the jury was to decide whether he deserved death or whether he deserved life. they just asked us to do a background and present what we thought. >> she and retired fbi agent robert ressler visited wallace inside the jail and conducted interviews. all of it was put on videotape. >> the footage was provided exclusively to abc news "20/20." >> henry wallace was quite open in what he talked about. he had many strengths in growing up, but he also had some obviously very lethal problems. do you understand any of this any better since you've had a chance to kind of reflect on it? >> within this shell, there are two people. one person being a -- a chameleon. he will adapt to anything, any environment, any situation.
and he's a very well respected, very well liked person. he almost lures the women in for the other person. >> so, he had good henry and bad henry. good henry was a friendly person that made friends very easily, dated women very easily. >> but then he said the bad henry would come out. the monster, so to speak. he came out, he was angry, he had to kill them. why he couldn't stay good henry for a long time, we don't know. but he just couldn't. what's generating the anger? >> experiences in the past. >> one of the reasons that wallace points to for committing his crimes is he did have a really tough upbringing. >> henry tells them that when he was a child he was molested. he also reveals that he and his mother, when he was growing up, had an extremely volatile
relationship. >> i was terrified of my mother. terrified. >> from? >> the beatings. >> henry also described being constantly teased about being a cheerleader and other things. >> he was teased about his size, he was teased about his color. >> wallace was trying to reshape this really terrible childhood that he had by taking out his aggressions on people that he knew, as if that was a replacement for the bad situations of his past. >> he married his high school sweetheart. this prom photo capturing them in happier times. >> but the marriage didn't last long and ended right before he moved to charlotte. >> it all starts collapsing after the wife left him. >> i grew to -- to hate her very much. and there's still a lot of hatred inside for her.
and i think that had i lived in south carolina and not charlotte that she would probably be one of the victims. >> wallace did think about killing his wife, but he was not able to actually go through with it. >> i think that the majority of the victims reminded me of her in some way. or when the murder and rape was taking place, who i was seeing was her and not the victim. >> after his marriage dissolved, then henry had to move back in with his mother. >> that really kind of was the straw that broke it all down. his murderous behavior.ted into- >> my mom was very violent, and i think more than -- other than a mate in these women, i was looking for a mother as well.
or traits of my mother. and -- they were there in all of them. >> henry wallace was danger disguised as a friend, and his victims never saw him coming. >> they felt comfortable with him because he portrayed himself as the big brother, as the good >> i think that was one of his motivations in a lot of these killings was they were women he liked who didn't like him that way. >> that's a more classic kind of a type of motive, if you will, for a serial killer. >> one of the biggest questions for burgess and ressler was, how did henry wallace evade police for so long? >> the only time that they -- that the police were concerned, when the two murders occurred on the same day. >> and that's with who? >> um, baucom and henderson. >> same day?
>> yeah. that's when all of a sudden they started seeing connections and things that had happened 20 months ago. >> you've got to do the victimology first. because they would have realized that they knew each other in some capacity, and that would have been a way to then zero in on henry. >> burgess testified for the defense, and she told the jury that wallace, while he was committing these murders, was in an alternate mental state. >> i did feel that he was not in total control of his thoughts, that he was being controlled, if you will, by the obsession. >> henry wallace was convicted of the rape and murder of nine women. >> i think we all knew what the verdict was going to be -- guilty. so, the real question was, does he live, does he die? >> the jury recommended death. and again, i don't think anyone was terribly surprised. sad cas.
it's not like you celebrate. >> i just want people to not forget, you know, what happened to these girls in charlotte, north carolina. we don't want people to go around and hear the name henry wallace and not know who he is, you know. because, you know, he was a black serial killer that killed a lot of black women. i want the world to know what happened and that these girls' lives mattered. >> finally, there's justice, but there's one more victim of henry wallace's rampage. the sole survivor is now all grown up.
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you gotta shut this baby up. 'cause tyrece was sitting right there beside her. he was pulling on his mom, on brandi. so he took a pair of shorts and tied it around his neck until he got quiet. >> i think about brandi's child often. how do you go on with your life? how does any loved one go on with their life when something this horrible happens? >> the picture that we took of him at the hospital, it's like i still see that picture in my mind every day. >> after he got out of the hospital, his father took him to chicago. and when tyrece was 5, his father passed away. >> i'm still here. if it wasn't me reading these stories, i would have thought that i had died, so i'm, like, reading some -- boy, i know this baby died. he survived? are you freaking serious? he's well? he has a family? he's married? he's doing something with hisself? >> you know those pop rock candies? that's like him. that's exactly what i can
describe him as. he's a ball of energy. >> i'm a father. i'm a husband. i'm an entrepreneur. i try and be a great role model, because i do have three sons. >> he's been through a lot of things. he's had it rough. >> he realized he never grieved for his mother, and he grew up without his mother's love. >> i went through a whole grieving class. i wrote my mama a letter. i told her i was mad. i told her i was angry. i told her how much -- i told her how much i missed her. i told her how sorry i was, because i know that i wasn't doing the right things. >> when i heard about his mother, inside i was crying. outside, i was strong. i'm finding out more and more about the situation with his mother every day. i went and searched for it, just
to know, you know, what type of woman she was and how it's instilled in him. >> she was such a great mother. she would have done anything -- anything at all for him. brandi told me that when she had tyrece that she felt like her life was complete. >> they tell me that she was a great person. they say that she wanted the best for me. they're like, i was her masterpiece. it's like, i'm somebody's masterpiece. like, that's a huge compliment for me. >> i saw tyrece when he was, like, 9 years old. we went to chicago and visited him, but since then, since that time, i lost track. i feel guilty about it. but i just could not stay in contact with him because i knew he would have all these questions, and i wasn't ready. >> after 20 years, brandi's cousin and close friend, george burrell, is now reuniting with brandi's son, tyrece.
>> whoo! what's up, dog? >> what's up, man? >> what's up, man? >> oh, my god. wow, wow, wow, wow. yes. and hello. >> liz, george. george, liz. >> finally! >> man, it's good to see you. >> you too. you're getting old. you got gray hair? you got a great beard. >> see that? the guilt. you know, when she told me, come over and see me that night, and i didn't go -- >> come on, man. hey, look, as brandi's son -- check me out, as her son, you're not responsible for anything that happened to her. also remember her life isn't the only life. there was also other victims and there's other family members who feel the same pain.
>> you heal, but you still got them scars. >> look at my neck, dog. >> i remember that, looking at you through the hospital door. i'm shaking. wow. that's how close. look at that, that's how close you came to not being here. oh, my word. wow, your lips are still red from -- >> yup. >> from being strangled. >> yeah. and that was the main part of, like -- that's why i say i'm the only sur -- like, that's a survivor. that little baby right there. >> and that's you now. >> yeah, that's me now. still with the tears and all. >> at trial, henry wallace was found guilty of the assault on tyrece. >> it's like, why didn't i die? truthfully, i wanted to die for a long time. as i started learning more, that'd be too selfish. she fought too hard to keep me alive. and that's why -- that's why i didn't die.
there's no timeframe on grieving. there's no timeframe on how long you can and can't miss somebody. but it's like, i'm a survivor. >> wallace was sentenced to death, but now he's asking the judge for a new trial. >> for him to be here pleading for his life is not fair. it's not justice. >> and i just believe it's time. it's time for us to finally see that end. your mission: stand up to moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis. and take. it. on... ...with rinvoq. rinvoq a once-daily pill can dramatically improve symptoms... rinvoq helps tame pain,
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execution date and finally get this resolved. >> i was determined that i wasn't going to hate him. you kind of have to let it go. otherwise it will consume you. >> i don't feel hate for him now. i started journaling, and it really did help. >> i forgave henry years ago for the madness of what he did. >> i don't harbor that hate for him, but i do think that justice should be served. >> audrey is buried in south carolina. my dad donated an acre of land for a new cemetery, and audrey was the first one buried in that cemetery. >> she has a niece named audrey lynette franklin. part of her legacy will definitely continue, so we're excited about that. >> she does have a son. his name is eric slaughter. he reminds me of debra a lot.
i think she would be very proud of him and the progress that he has made in his life. >> i just wanted mothers to come together and join our forces and our hearts. mom-o, mothers of murdered offspring. >> the whole point in mom-o being created was to make sure that shawna's memory lived on. >> should have never happened, but it made us better detectives and it -- it made charlotte police department a better homicide unit. >> in a statement to "20/20," about the wallace investigation, the charlotte-mecklenburg police department says, the detectives worked the cases as diligently as they would have any homicide case, with the race of the victim being irrelevant. in the aftermath of the murders, the department says it added staffing to the homicide unit and implemented regular mandatory meetings to better identify related cases. >> you know, the guys in the homicide unit, i know them all from that time.
it's just that they were put in a situation where you just couldn't win. >> listen to the families, because they are the voices of the victims. >> i fight for my own breath sometimes. i fight to be here. if i had a dollar for every time that i've been told, ms. sumpter, i know i'm gonna make it, because you're making it. >> none of these young african-american ladies deserved to die. they were young ladies who deserved to have a bright future, and so you know, my hope and prayer is that even though as tragic as this was, something positive will come out of it. one more point on this tonight. henry wallace is appealing his nine death sentences. >> and we should also note, david, that he declined to be
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