Unsolved Homicide: Fort Hood Army Pfc. Brandon Rosecrans Found Fatally Shot Four Miles From Burning Jeep in Harker Heights, Texas; Local PD Takes Lead (May 18, 2020)

Brandon Rosecrans

Pfc. Brandon Rosecrans, U.S. Army

Fort Hood Army Pfc. Brandon Scott Rosecrans, 27, of Kimberling City, Missouri, was found dead on the southern edge of Harker Heights, Texas on May 18, 2020. Brandon Rosecrans’ was a shooting victim and his body was found along Fuller Lane just north of the western end of Stillhouse Hollow Lake. His orange-colored 2016 Jeep Renegade was discovered on fire about four miles from his body. The cause of the fire is under investigation by the Harker Heights Fire Marshal. Pfc. Rosecrans served as a quartermaster and chemical equipment repairer with the 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division since November 2018. Pfc. Rosecrans enlisted in the Army in May 2018.

Harker Heights, Texas, Police Chief Phillip Gadd reported that following a preliminary investigation, they’ve determined that Brandon Rosecrans died from a gunshot wound and that his death was being investigated as a murder. The murder and arson investigations are being run concurrently by the Harker Height’s police and fire departments and the U.S. Army CID. According to the Army CID, the Harker Heights Police Department is the lead investigative agency for Brandon Rosecrans’ death. Anyone with information, “no matter how insignificant it may seem,” is asked to come forward and contact Army CID, the military police or their local law enforcement agency.

“The Harker Heights Police Criminal Investigation Division is asking anyone with information about this murder to contact them at 254-953-5400. Individuals may also provide information to Crime Stoppers at 254-526-TIPS (8477) or go online at www.bellcountycrimestoppers.com. All information is confidential and anonymous and if your tip leads to the arrest of the person(s) responsible, you could be eligible to receive a reward up to $1,000 in cash.” -Harker Heights PD Press Release (May 19, 2020)

In the News:

Man found dead in Harker Heights identified as Fort Hood soldier Pfc. Brandon Rosecrans -KWKT FOX44 (May 20, 2020)

Digital First Video: Parents of Brandon Rosecrans -KOLR10 News (May 28, 2020)

Army Pfc. Brandon Rosecrans’ Funeral in Kimberling City

Pfc. Brandon Rosecrans Funeral -KOLR10 News (June 2, 2020)

His vehicle was found on fire 15 mins after he was found about 4 miles away. Let help get brandon justice. His reward is only 1000 it needs upped. Also his service if you want to pay your respect and watch. -A thin line between Love and homicide (June 29, 2020)

Pfc. Brandon Rosecrans was found dead near his burning Jeep a short drive from the base, killed by a gunshot wound. Police and Army investigators are now investigating the death as a possible murder. -Military Times (July 1, 2020)

Press Releases:

FHPC Brandon Rosecrans

Fort Hood Press Center Press Release for Pfc. Brandon Rosecrans (Editor’s Note: Fort Hood will delete this press release, hence the reason it’s been preserved)

HH PR Brandon Rosecrans

Harker Heights Police Department Press Release for Brandon Rosecrans

Related Links:
Death of a Fort Hood Soldier (Fort Hood Press Center)
Harker Heights Police Department – Posts | Facebook
Police identify shooting victim found dead along local road
Man found dead in Harker Heights identified as Fort Hood soldier
Fort Hood soldier found shot dead near burning Jeep
Fort Hood soldier found shot in the head inside burning car, police say
Man found dead in Harker Heights identified as Fort Hood soldier
Man found dead in Harker Heights identified as Fort Hood soldier
Man killed in Harker Heights Monday identified as Fort Hood soldier
Fort Hood soldier found shot dead miles from his vehicle burning near Texas base
Fort Hood soldier found shot to death two minutes after car found engulfed in flames
Fort Hood soldier found shot to death and vehicle burned identified by US Army
Soldier from Kimberling City killed in Texas shooting
Video: Fort Hood soldier’s death investigated as a homicide
Fort Hood soldier found shot to death and vehicle burned identified by US Army
Harker Heights police investigating shooting death of Fort Hood soldier as murder
Texas authorities investigating death of soldier from Kimberling City, Mo.
Parents of Kimberling City soldier open up about their son’s murder, legacy
Ep31. MISSING x2: Missing in Fort Hood (Vanessa Guillen & Gregory Morales) | Military Murder Podcast
Army Soldiers at Fort Hood in Texas Are Dying at Alarming Rates Stateside (January 1, 2016 to Present)
The Murder of Vanessa Guillen and the Unsolved Homicides of Fort Hood
What Is Happening At Fort Hood? – Missing People In America
Man found dead in Harker Heights identified as Fort Hood soldier
Soldiers Funeral in Kimberling City
Fort Hood Soldier’s death investigated as a homicide
Digital First Video: Parents of Brandon Rosecrans
Pfc. Brandon Rosecrans Funeral | KOLR10 News
PFC Brandon Scott Rosecrans found shot on the side of the road shot

Snapped Premiered ‘Valerie Nessler’ on Oxygen: Coast Guard Veteran Jeff Wheatley Murdered in Case of Mistaken Revenge (November 3, 2019)

When a deadly rumor is stirred up among friends and acquaintances, it sets off an explosion of brutal violence so gruesome that not even a house fire can hide the truth. Who could have wanted Jeffrey Wheatley dead, and what was his roomate hiding? -Valerie Nessler, Snapped (October 31, 2019)

Wendy Fishburn, sister of Jeff Wheatley, says she “absolutely does not believe in closure” in regard to her brother’s murder. In 2010, Wheatley was shot, stabbed and set on fire after a man named Robert Turner became falsely convinced Wheatley had killed his older brother more than a decade prior. -Valerie Nessler, Snapped (November 4, 2019)

Related Links:
Valerie Nessler | Snapped – Oxygen
Man Shot, Stabbed And Set On Fire In A Drug-Fueled Case Of Mistaken Revenge
Coast Guard Veteran Jeffrey Wheatley Found Dead in House Fire; Valerie Nessler, Robert Turner & Allen Periman Found Guilty of Murder (April 7, 2010)
A Stranger in My Home Premiered ‘Roommate From Hell’ on ID: Jeffrey Wheatley Found Murdered in House Fire Because False Accusations (December 15, 2013)
A Stranger in My Home: 5 Veteran Homicide Cases Featured on Investigation Discovery
The Gruesome Murder of Jefferey Wheatley Shocks Investigators | Snapped Sneak Peek
Jeff Wheatley’s Brutal Stockton Murder Was A Case Of Mistaken Revenge | Snapped Bonus
Valerie Nessler | Snapped | Oxygen (S26,E11)

Army Vet Christian Martin Accused of 2015 Pembroke, Kentucky Homicides; No Motive or Physical Evidence Produced by Authorities on Day of Arrest; Pleads Not Guilty (May 11, 2019)

The latest: Major Martin became a “person of interest” to law enforcement officials in the Fort Campbell area after several bodies were discovered Nov. 19 at two different locations not far from his Pembroke, Ky., home. One of the bodies was that of Calvin Lee Phillips, 59, a man who lived across the street from the major and was set to testify during the aforementioned military trial. Following an emergency hearing Nov. 24, a military judge ordered the trial, set to begin Dec. 1, delayed indefinitely. -Bob McCarty (Nov. 30, 2015)

Christian Martin interview

Screenshot of Christian Martin’s interview with News 4 Tennessee about the Pembroke murders (April 28, 2016). Click here for raw video.

Facts:

  • Nov. 18, 2015: Calvin Phillips was found fatally shot in his home & the bodies of his wife Pamela Phillips & neighbor, Edward Dansereau, were found in Pam Phillips’ burned out car on Rosetown Road in Pembroke, Kentucky
  • April 28, 2016: Christian Martin interviewed with the local media about the Pembroke murders. He denied any involvement and was confident that he would not be accused of the crimes. He wanted to set the record straight.
  • May 13, 2016: Christian Martin was found guilty of two counts of mishandling of classified material & two counts of assault of a child; Martin was found not guilty on two charges of rape of a child & communicating a threat; Sentenced to three months in jail & discharged from the Army
  • July 11, 2018: Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear faces scrutiny for past campaign contributions; Beshear’s top deputy was accused of taking kick-backs and bribes for political donations; Republicans accused team Beshear of being corrupt; although it had been two years at the time of print, the money still had not been spent but Beshear vowed to donate any tainted contributions to Common Cause, a government watchdog group
  • May 10, 2019: Martin was indicted on three counts of murder; one count of arson; one count of attempted arson, burglary in the 1st degree & three counts of tampering with physical evidence; Authorities have not given a motive or said what led them to believe Martin was responsible
  • May 21, 2019: Attorney General Andy Beshear wins the Democratic primary for Kentucky governor
  • May 22, 2019: At arraignment, Christian Martin pleads not guilty; the State of Kentucky AG is holding him in jail with no bond and threatening the death penalty

“The Christian County Sherriff’s Department tells FOX 17 that both Major Martin and [Joan] Harmon are persons of interest in the triple murder that happened in Pembroke back in November. The department says it has interviewed Harmon twice about the murders and what she knows. However, the department refuses to say she’s a suspect.” –Fox 17 Nashville (May 11, 2016)

In the News (2019):

  1. Christian Martin interview with Channel 4 I-Team about Pembroke murders (April 28, 2016) [VIDEO]
  2. Beshear faces scrutiny for past campaign contributions (July 11, 2018)
  3. NCFM Member ‘Kit Martin’ Indicted for Murder in Kentucky
  4. Pilot With NC Ties Indicted In 2015 Triple Murder
  5. Past defense attorney for Army Major indicted in triple murder says he’s innocent
  6. Former Army Major indicted in triple murder, past attorney says he’s innocent
  7. Neighbors relieved after suspect arrested in 2015 Christian County murders
  8. Kentucky town hopes for closure as pilot returns to face triple murder charges
  9. Arraignment Set For Pilot Charged In 3 Killings In Christian County
  10. Arraignment set for pilot charged in 3 killings in Kentucky
  11. Fiancee of commercial pilot charged in Kentucky triple homicide says he’s ‘100 percent innocent’
  12. Dad died over evidence he gave Army, victim’s son says after pilot’s arrest in triple homicide
  13. Pilot accused of triple murder claimed in interview one victim had affair with his ‘bigamist’ ex-wife
  14. Pilot accused in 2015 triple homicide could face death penalty
  15. Man Indicted For 2015 Christian Co. Triple Murder Could Face Death, Held Without Bond
  16. Andy Beshear wins the Democratic primary for Kentucky governor
  17. Andy Beshear Wins Democratic Primary for Kentucky Governor
  18. Fear Thy Neighbor – The Pembroke Murders Investigation
  19. The Murder of a Federal Witness – A News4 Special
  20. A Love Triangle & Financial Ruin: Who Had the Motive to Murder in Pembroke?
  21. A Love Triangle & Financial Ruin: Who Had the Motive to Murder in Pembroke? Part 2
  22. Christian Martin, pilot arrested in triple murder, pleads not guilty
  23. Airplane pilot pleads not guilty in Kentucky triple murder case
  24. Raleigh pilot Christian Martin charged with triple murder pleads not guilty

All suspects are presumed innocent until proven guilty by a court of law. Arrests and charges are accusations by legal authorities until a suspect is convicted of the crime.

*****************************************************

Fear Thy Neighbor – The Pembroke Murders Investigation -WSMV (June 25, 2019)

The Murder Of A Federal Witness : A News4 Special -WSMV (June 30, 2019)

In May when the Kentucky Attorney General arrested Christian “Kit” Martin for the murders of three people in Pembroke, Kentucky, he offered no clues on what new evidence led to the arrest. -Fox Nashville (July 26, 2019)

A love triangle and financial ruin: Who had the motive to murder in Pembroke? Part 2 -Fox Nashville (July 26, 2019)

Timeline of Events

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2015:
NCFM sends letter to Secretary of Defense about the wrongful persecution of Major Christian “Kit” Martin
Army Major Questioned in Pembroke Murders
Nashville’s Fox 17 Omits Key Details From News Reports About Army Officer Caught Up In Murder Investigation
Man found dead inside Ky. home was witness in court-martial case
Man found dead was to be witness in court-martial case
Home, Cars of Fort Campbell Army Major Searched in Connection to Ky. Murders
Major Martin 9-2-15 Interview with Updates (November 30, 2015)
Attorney Cites ‘Foul Smell in the Air’ Surrounding Effort to Link Army Officer to Multiple Murders Near Fort Campbell
Computer custody questioned in sex assault hearing
Law-and-Order Veterans ‘Smell A Rat’ at Fort Campbell
Officials Identify Gunshot Victim Found Inside Home While Facebook Comments About Case Appear and Disappear
NCFM asks DoD Inspector General for Referral to U.S. Attorney General for Criminal Probe of JAG Prosecutors in the Case of U.S. Army Major Christian “Kit” Martin, then there’s the triple murder…
NCFM used in triple murder case article linked to the Army’s persecution of Major Martin

2016:
Kit Martin interview with Channel 4 I-Team about Pembroke murders
Recording of victim 2 weeks before murders reveals connections to person of interest
Witnesses say Army major physically, sexually abused them
Minors take stand in court-martial of Army major to accuse of sex abuse
Family of Fort Campbell Army Major says he’s Innocent in Triple Murder Case
Army major found not guilty of sexual assault charges
Major Christian “Kit” Martin is acquitted of child sex abuse
NCFM update, Major Christian “Kit” Martin Dodges a Bullet in Courts-Martial at Fort Campbell – Is Acquitted of Child Sex Abuse Charges
Ft. Campbell Army Major Found Guilty of Assault on a Child
Court-martialed Army major found guilty, sentenced
NCFM update in the False Accusation and Wrongful Conviction Case of Army Major “Kit” Martin
U.S. Army Major Christian “Kit” Martin: The Wrongful Conviction of an American Hero
Triple Murder, False Rape Allegations and the corruption of both a police department and the U.S. Army
False Accusation and Wrongful Conviction Case of Army Major “Kit” Martin
Police still seeking info in Pembroke triple-murder
Police still seeking info in Pembroke triple-murder

2017:
Family offers $100K reward for information on Pembroke triple murder
$100K reward offered in deaths of Ky. couple found in burned car
$100,000 Reward In Triple Homicide

2018:
Three Year Anniversary Of Unsolved Pembroke Triple Murders

Christian Richard Martin is facing several charges, in Christian County, Ky., including murder and arson. Martin moved from Kentucky to North Carolina after the murders, the Attorney General’s Office said. -WFMY News 2 (May 11, 2019)

2019 (Arrest):
NCFM Member ‘Kit Martin’ Indicted for Murder in Kentucky
Beshear: Man Indicted for 2015 Christian County Triple Murder
Kentucky AG indicts man of 3 counts of murders in 2015
Pilot With NC Ties Indicted In 2015 Triple Murder
Man indicted for 2015 Pembroke, Kentucky murders
Man indicted for 2015 Christian County triple murder
Man Arrested In 2015 Triple Slaying In Christian County
Christian R. Martin Indicted for 2015 Christian County Triple Murder
Pembroke Triple Murder Suspect A Pilot For American Airlines
Pilot accused of 2015 triple murder in Western Kentucky arrested at Louisville airport
Pilot arrested at Louisville airport, indicted for 2015 triple murder
American Airlines pilot arrested at Louisville airport for 2015 triple homicide
Airline pilot charged with killing 3 in Kentucky in 2015
Airline pilot arrested, charged in connection with 2015 triple murder in Kentucky
Airline pilot faces murder and arson charges in 2015 triple slaying in Kentucky
Two bodies in a burned car, another shot in his home. Years later, a former neighbor is indicted.
Christian Co. Grand Jury Unseals Triple Murder Indictment Friday
Man Indicted for 2015 Christian County Triple Murder: After meeting with family members two years ago Beshear’s office took over the case (May 11, 2019 Tweet)
Past defense attorney for Army Major indicted in triple murder says he’s innocent
Former Army Major indicted in triple murder, past attorney says he’s innocent

2019 (Arraignment):
Arraignment Set For Pilot Charged In 3 Killings In Christian County
Arraignment set for pilot charged in 3 killings in Kentucky
Martin arraigned in court for Pembroke murders
Pembroke triple homicide suspect entered not guilty plea at arraignment
Pilot arrested at Louisville airport pleads not guilty in triple murder case
Christian Martin, pilot arrested in triple murder, pleads not guilty
Raleigh pilot Christian Martin charged with triple murder pleads not guilty
Airplane pilot pleads not guilty in Kentucky triple murder case
Pilot charged in Kentucky triple slaying pleads not guilty
Pilot arrested at Louisville airport pleads not guilty in triple murder case
Pilot arrested at Louisville airport pleads not guilty in triple murder case
Commercial pilot pleads not guilty to 2015 triple murder charges
American Airlines Pilot Pleads Not Guilty To Murder
American Airlines pilot pleads NOT guilty to the 2015 murders of three people
Fiancee of commercial pilot charged in Kentucky triple homicide says he’s ‘100 percent innocent’
Dad died over evidence he gave Army, victim’s son says after pilot’s arrest in triple homicide
Pilot accused of triple murder claimed in interview one victim had affair with his ‘bigamist’ ex-wife
Neighbors relieved after suspect arrested in 2015 Christian County murders
‘Monster’ in the Cockpit: Inside the Crazy Case of the American Airlines Pilot Accused of Triple Murder
Kentucky town hopes for closure as pilot returns to face triple murder charges
‘Scars the community’ Pilot, former Army major held without bond in triple Kentucky murder
Who Is Christian Martin? New Details On The Army Major Turned Airline Pilot Arrested For Triple Murder
Christian Martin: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know
Pilot accused in 2015 triple homicide could face death penalty
Update: Man Indicted For 2015 Christian Co. Triple Murder Could Face Death, Held Without Bond

48 Hours CBS Premiered ‘Murder in Pinyon Pines’: An Investigation of the Cold Case Murders of Becky Friedli, Jon Hayward & Vicki Friedli in California (July 28, 2018)

A family murdered in their home. Years later, an arrest but then the two suspects are unexpectedly freed. “48 Hours” Troy Roberts reports. -CBS New York (January 16, 2015)

Drew Friedli recites a poem her sister, Becky, left on Myspace, before her murder in 2006. Drew feels the poem, “If I Knew It was the Last Time,” encompasses who Becky was because she always let people know that she loved them. -48 Hours (January 16, 2015)

Saturday, Aug. 1 starting at 9/8c on CBS: A triple murder, a young woman set afire in a wheelbarrow. Police have suspects until a courtroom twist changes everything. Then at 10/9c: Was an alleged religious cult responsible for a young bride’s death? -48 Hours (July 28, 2015)

The new district attorney for Riverside, California, has promised to look at the Pinyon Pines murder cold case with “an open mind.” “48 Hours” correspondent Troy Roberts discusses the case with CBSN. -CSBN (July 31, 2015)

A triple murder, a young woman set afire in a wheelbarrow. Police have suspects until a courtroom twist changes everything. “48 Hours ” has the latest on the case including an emotional verdict Saturday, July 28 at 10/9c on CBS. -48 Hours (July 27, 2018)

Related Links:
Murder in Pinyon Pines | 48 Hours (full episode 2015)
Murder in Pinyon Pines | 48 Hours (full episode 2015 2)
Murder in Pinyon Pines | 48 Hours (full episode 2018)
Murder in Pinyon Pines | 48 Hours Podcast
48 Hours Preview: Murder In Pinyon Pines
Sister reads one of Becky Friedli’s last postings on social media
Preview: “48 Hours” double feature
“48 Hours” probes Pinyon Pines triple murder case
Sneak peek: Murder in Pinyon Pines
Murder in Pinyon Pines | 48 Hours
Men charged in Pinyon Pines triple-murder for second time in two years
Pinyon Pines mystery: 3 murdered, set on fire in remote desert community
Pathologist reveals autopsy findings in Pinyon Pines murder trial
Tape reveals details of defendant’s, victim’s relationship in Pinyon Pines triple murder trial
Witness: Accused RivCo Killer Not Violent, ‘Best Person’ Ever
Pinyon Pines murder trial: Everything you should know about the case
Key witness in Pinyon Pines triple murder trial speaks out
2 men found guilty in 2006 Pinyon Pines murders
Two Men Guilty in Family’s Gruesome Pinyon Pines Murder
Anger and Joy After Guilty Verdicts in Pinyon Pines Triple Murder Case
Pair who murdered Pinyon Pines family to be sentenced
Pinyon Pines murder case: Defendants sentenced to life without parole
Pinyon Pines murders: Pair kill, burn family-of-three—discarding slain teen’s charred remains in wheelbarrow
Becky Friedli, Jon Hayward & Vicki Friedli Found Dead at Burnt Down Pinyon Pines Home in California; Cristin Smith & Robert Pape Sentenced to Life in Prison, No Parole (September 17, 2006)

48 Hours NCIS Premiered ‘Trail of Fire’ on CBS: Holley Wimunc, Domestic Violence, and the Holley Lynn James Act (June 26, 2018)

Friends searching for a missing Army nurse find her apartment smoldering and no sign of their friend. Can NCIS agents find her? -Trail of Fire, 48 Hours NCIS

The apartment of a missing Army nurse was found smoldering. This was the season finale of “48 Hours: NCIS” and producer Jonathan Leach joined CBS News to discuss the episode. -Trail of Fire, 48 Hours NCIS

Holley Lynn James Wimunc 2

Lt. Holley Lynn James, US Army

Fort Bragg Army nurse, Lt Holley (Lynn James) Wimunc, 24, was murdered by her Marine husband John Wimunc on July 9, 2008 in Fayetteville, North Carolina. After Holley didn’t show up to work, her friends went looking for her. They found her apartment had been set on fire but Holley was nowhere to be found. Three days later authorities discovered Holley’s mutilated remains in a shallow grave outside of Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. Her body had been chopped up with an axe and burned repeatedly in an effort to try and destroy evidence. John Wimunc also started her apartment on fire in an effort to hide evidence with no regard for any of the nineteen other families in the apartment building. Holley’s father Jesse James shared that she planned on divorcing John Wimunc after putting up with the domestic abuse for over seven months. It would be the day after she told John that she was leaving him that she would go missing. Marine Cpl. John Wimunc, 23, was charged with first-degree murder, second-degree arson and conspiracy to commit arson. An accomplice, Lance Cpl. Kyle Alden, 22, was charged with being an accessory after the fact of a felony, second-degree arson and conspiracy to commit arson. John Wimunc plead guilty to avoid the death penalty and was sentenced to life in prison. Kyle Alden plead guilty and was sentenced to 44 to 62 months in prison. Jesse James worked with Representative Bruce Braley on legislation that would improve conditions for both domestic violence and sexual assault victims in the military. The Holley Lynn James Act (H.R. 1517) was introduced to the 112th Congress in 2011 but did not pass.

“I didn’t know much about domestic violence. But the thought that he would murder Holley is a thought that never occurred to me. I wish it had occurred to me. I wish for one moment I would have thought maybe he’ll kill Holley or murder Holley. My reaction would have been so different. I didn’t know about domestic violence.” -Jesse James (Holley’s father)

MJFA Link:
Army Nurse Lt. Holley Lynn James Murdered by Marine Husband the Day After She Announced Divorce; John Wimunc Plead Guilty, Sentenced to Life in Prison (July 9, 2008)
History: The Military And Domestic Abuse (January 28, 2009)
30 Domestic Abuse Cases in the Military That Ended in the Murder of Female Partners (2017)

Editor’s Note: If you would like to watch the full episode of ‘Trail of Fire,’ please visit the CBS All Access website, visit the 48 Hours website, or download the 48 Hours app for iPad. The most recent episodes are unlocked on the 48 Hours website and app. If you would like to watch past episodes on the 48 Hours app, it cost’s $4.99 a year. There’s programming dating back to 2005 on the 48 Hours app, including some classics, to feed your true crime addiction.  

Authorities in North Carolina have charged the husband of a Fort Bragg Army nurse with murder after the woman’s remains were found in a brush fire three days after she went missing. -AP (July 14, 2008)

The husband of an Army nurse who worked in the maternity ward at Fort Bragg’s hospital was charged Monday with murder in her death, a day after her body was discovered by authorities. -AP (July 14, 2008)

Rep. Bruce Braley introduces the Holley Lynn James Act — a bill to help victims of sexual assault and domestic violence in the military get justice. The bill is named after Holley Lynn James, a constituent of Rep. Braley who was killed by her husband while both were in the service.

Domestic Violence: Holley Wimunc

Related Links:
Obituary: Lt Holley Lynn James
Second Missing Ft. Bragg Soldier Is Divorcing Husband
Evidence to be preserved in case of slain Army nurse
Authorities suspect charred remains could be Fort Bragg nurse
Fort Bragg nurse sought protection from Marine husband after gun incident
Apartment complex denies access to slain soldier’s family
Slain soldier’s brother retrieves belongings from apartment
Autopsy: Army nurse was shot, buried
Funeral set for Army nurse Holley Wimunc
Vigil planned for slain Army nurse
Fort Bragg hosts memorial service for slain nurse
Wimunc’s father: Daughter ‘never met a stranger’
Family, attorney: Marine charged in wife’s death is innocent
Marine’s parents: Claims of violence against wife ‘unfounded’
Husband, 2nd man arrested in slaying of Bragg-based soldier
2 Marines charged in nurse’s death due in NC court
Marine charged in wife’s death
Marine charged in death of Army nurse wife
Husband charged with murdering soldier wife
Missing Nurse’s Marine Husband Charged With Murder
Dead Army nurse’s husband charged with murder
Camp Lejeune husband charged with the murder of his Fort Bragg wife
Soldier’s Husband Charged With Murder
Marines appear in court in Army nurse’s death
Marines charged in slaying appear in court
Marines indicted in Army nurse’s slaying
Death penalty sought in Army nurse’s slaying
NC to seek death penalty in killing of Army wife from Dubuque
Wimunc Faces Death Penalty
Plea deal reached in Marine murder case
Camp Lejeune Marine pleads guilty to killing wife
Second Marine pleads guilty in Army nurse’s death
Marine Pleads Guilty in Army Wife’s Murder
Slain Army nurse’s dad in war against domestic violence
Death on the Home Front
The Fort Bragg Murders
U.S. Military Is Keeping Secrets About Female Soldiers’ ‘Suicides’
When a Military Nurse Fails to Show Up for Work, Worried Friends Rush to Her Apartment Only to Find her Home Burned & Their Friend Missing
Did a Missing Army Nurse Fall Prey to a Serial Killer Targeting Military Women?
Fort Bragg soldier Holley Wimunc’s 2008 murder featured on CBS’ ’48 Hours: NCIS’
Fort Bragg soldier Holley Wimunc’s 2008 murder featured on CBS’ ’48 Hours: NCIS’
History: The Military And Domestic Abuse (January 28, 2009)
30 Domestic Abuse Cases in the Military That Ended in the Murder of Female Partners (2017)

Video Links:
AP Top Stories: Holley Wimunc
Dead Army Nurse’s Husband Charged With Murder
Marine Charged in Army Wife’s Death
Holley James we miss you
Domestic Violence in the Military Part 1 | CBS News
Domestic Violence in the Military Part 2 | CBS News
Rep. Braley introduces Holley Lynn James Act
Domestic Violence: Holley Wimunc
Did a missing Army nurse fall prey to a serial killer targeting military women?
“48 Hours: NCIS” sneak peek: Trail of Fire
“48 Hours: NCIS: Trail of Fire” preview

Fear Thy Neighbor Premiered ‘Burn Neighbor, Burn’ on ID: In Retaliation, Andrew Sindriewicz Burned Down Two Family Homes in New York (May 4, 2016)

ID Go: In peaceful Alden, New York, siblings who live in neighboring houses get into a conflict when their prodigal brother returns home. Soon, the family is at each other’s throats until their war finally comes to a shocking, fiery end. -Burn Neighbor, Burn, Fear Thy Neighbor (S3, E6)

Date: June 3, 2009
Victims: Helena & David Ward, Raymond Sindriewicz, and Holly & Dale Earsing
Offender: Andrew Sindriewicz, 49, Marine Corps veteran, disabled, caretaker for mother
Location: Alden, New York
Circumstances: Brothers Raymond and Andrew didn’t get along as they got older, Raymond moved in next-door with his sister Helena due to failing health, Andrew started blasting heavy metal music in the garage and Raymond asked him to turn down the music, Andrew would turn it down initially but after Raymond left, he turned it back up, Andrew harbored grudges, sister Helena described Andrew as menacing, Andrew had a dark side, Raymond collected furniture that he restored & sold at local flea markets, Andrew didn’t like all the junk collecting on his sister’s property, Andrew trimmed a tree that dropped on Raymond’s furniture but he wouldn’t admit he did it on purpose, Andrew refused to turn down loud music, Andrew and Raymond got in a physical altercation because of the loud music, Andrew was accidentally cut by the skill saw, Andrew became distraught about their oldest sister who died, Andrew pointed a gun at his sister Helena one night, Andrew suffered with anxiety, Andrew wouldn’t leave the house because he was afraid Raymond would shoot him, Helena called the police for fear that Andrew would commit suicide, instead Andrew was charged with menacing behavior and possession of a deadly weapon, Helena felt bad that he was arrested and went to bat for him at court, the charges are dropped, but Andrew didn’t forgive her, their mother died in the spring of 2007, Raymond was cut out of the will, Raymond felt betrayed that he got nothing and believed that Andrew manipulated their mom, Andrew and sister Helena inherited their mom’s house but Andrew had no money to maintain the house, Andrew wanted his niece and her family to move into the house and help him pay the bills, Andrew turned the garage into his permanent home after they moved in, Andrew started getting annoyed with the children and their messes, Andrew played loud music day after day and wouldn’t turn it down as if he was torturing everyone, niece Holly called the police on Andrew who pretended to be asleep, Holly hoped the issue was settled but it was not, Andrew was very upset that she called the police, the kids got a new puppy but Andrew was not happy because they didn’t ask his permission first, Andrew got his own dog and gave the dog commands to bite their dog, he hoped his dog would kill their dog, Dale confronted Andrew and they got in a fight, Andrew resorted to underhanded tactics like removing the A/C unit from the window, Andrew stopped talking to Holly and Dale, everyone was walking on eggshells, Andrew blasted his music later and later into the night so Holly & Dale shut off his power one night, Andrew tried breaking into their home and they called the police but he couldn’t be charged because it wasn’t criminal in nature, it was a nuisance, there was nothing the police could do to help Holly and Dale, Helena obtained a court order on June 2, 2009 allowing her to sell their mother’s property without Andrew’s say, Andrew was not happy, when Helena returned home the next day, her house was on fire, Dale and Holly’s home was also on fire, both homes were permanently damaged, the family pet was trapped inside and died, the garage apartment also was engulfed in flames, authorities initiated a manhunt for Andrew, the presumed arsonist, after the fire was out, firefighters discovered Andrew’s body in his mother’s home, after an investigation, the family learned that Andrew was seen filling gas cans in town, he poured gasoline all over the properties and then he cut the gas lines, Andrew also purposefully killed the dog and himself in the house fire, neither house was salvageable
Disposition: Andrew Sindriewicz died in the housefire, ruled suicide

Editor’s note: With a cable subscription, you can download the free ID Go app and watch all of the Investigation Discovery programming at your convenience. And for those who do not have cable, you can watch “unlocked” episodes on the ID Go app including the latest premieres. Download the ID Go app and binge away. For those who prefer commercial free programming during your binge session, Prime Video has an ID channel: ‘True Crime Files by Investigation Discovery” available for $2.99 a month. It’s a compilation of older seasons but totally worth the cost if you are a true crime addict.

Related Links:
N.Y. family dispute ends with fiery death
Sibling dispute turns tragic, ending in arson and suicide Brother dies after setting fire to 2 homes
Fire rescue of man poses a puzzle
Burn Neighbor, Burn | Fear Thy Neighbor | Investigation Discovery (S3, E6)
Burn Neighbor, Burn | Fear Thy Neighbor | Investigation Discovery (website)
Burn Neighbor, Burn | Fear Thy Neighbor | Investigation Discovery (Amazon)
Fear Thy Neighbor: 23 Veteran Cases Featured on Investigation Discovery

A Stranger in My Home Premiered ‘Roommate From Hell’ on ID: Jeffrey Wheatley Found Murdered in House Fire Because False Accusations (December 15, 2013)

When Jeffrey Wheatley moves to Stockton, California he sees it as a second chance. His friend Drew offers him a room in a house that he shares with Valerie Nessler. But soon, the house will be the setting of the most brutal murder the town has ever seen. -Roommate From Hell, A Stranger in My Home (S1,E10)

Editor’s note: With a cable subscription, you can download the free ID Go app and watch Investigation Discovery programming at your convenience. And for those who do not have cable, you can watch “unlocked” episodes on the ID Go app including the latest premieres. For those who prefer commercial free programming during your binge session, Prime Video has an ID channel: ‘True Crime Files by Investigation Discovery” available for $3.99 a month. It’s a compilation of older seasons but totally worth the cost if you are a true crime addict. Download the ID Go app or purchase ID True Crime Files & binge away.

Related Links:
Roommate From Hell | A Stranger in My Home | Investigation Discovery (S1,E10)
Roommate From Hell | A Stranger in My Home | Investigation Discovery (website)
Roommate From Hell | A Stranger in My Home | Investigation Discovery (Amazon)
Coast Guard Veteran Jeffrey Wheatley Found Dead in House Fire; Valerie Nessler, Robert Turner & Allen Periman Found Guilty of Murder (April 7, 2010)

Unusual Suspects Premiered ‘When Evil Strikes’ on ID: Police Investigate Marine Veteran Jonathan Blackwell’s Disappearance & Murder (June 16, 2013)

In 2004, a former marine goes missing from his North Carolina home. Investigators sift through a mountain of tips and small-town rumors before a surprise witness comes forward who may hold the key to the mysterious disappearance. -When Evil Strikes, Unusual Suspects (S5,E11)

Related Links:
Unusual Suspects | Investigation Discovery (website)
When Evil Strikes | Unusual Suspects | Investigation Discovery (S5,E11)
When Evil Strikes | Unusual Suspects | Investigation Discovery (Amazon)
Marine Veteran Jonathan Blackwell Killed by Girlfriend’s Jealous Ex in North Carolina; Stacey Webster Sentenced to 16 1/2 Years in Prison for 2nd Degree Murder (October 7, 2004)

Homicide Hunter Premiered ‘The Spy Who Killed Me’ on ID: William Jennes II Shot & Killed Wife Elspeth ‘Elsie’ Jennes Over Finances (October 30, 2012)

Housewife Elsie Jennes is found dead in the basement of her burning home. Lt Joe Kenda has no leads until Elsie’s son, William, turns up in a police station over 50 miles away, equipped with a suitcase, a pet yellow labrador, and a bizarre story to tell. -The Spy Who Killed Me, Homicide Hunter (S2, E4)

Editor’s note: With a cable subscription, you can download the free ID Go app and watch Investigation Discovery programming at your convenience. And for those who do not have cable, you can watch “unlocked” episodes on the ID Go app including the latest premieres. For those who prefer commercial free programming during your binge session, Prime Video has an ID channel: ‘True Crime Files by Investigation Discovery” available for $3.99 a month. It’s a compilation of older seasons but totally worth the cost if you are a true crime addict. Download the ID Go app or purchase ID True Crime Files & binge away.

Related Links:
News Footage 1995: Elspeth T. Jennes Case | Homicide Hunter: Lt. Joe Kenda
Actual news footage from 1995 surrounding the Elspeth Jennes case | Homicide Hunter: Lt. Joe Kenda
The Spy Who Killed Me | Homicide Hunter | Investigation Discovery (preview)
The Spy Who Killed Me | Homicide Hunter | Investigation Discovery (S2, E4)
The Spy Who Killed Me | Homicide Hunter | Investigation Discovery (website)
The Spy Who Killed Me | Homicide Hunter | Investigation Discovery (Amazon)
The Spy Who Killed Me | Homicide Hunter | Investigation Discovery (Hulu)
Elsie Jennes Found Murdered in House Fire; Army Veteran William Jennes II Pleaded Guilty to 2nd Degree Murder, Sentenced to 48 Years in Prison (July 17, 1995)

Army Spouse Billi Jo Smallwood Convicted of Arson that Killed Her 2 Children Samuel Fagan & Rebekah Smallwood; Sentenced to 25 Years in Federal Prison (June 28, 2012)

Preview: The Ballad of Billi-Jo, True Crime with Aphrodite Jones (S4,E9)

On May 29, 2007, Billi Jo and Wayne Smallwood experienced a fire in their Fort Campbell, Kentucky home. They had three children living with them at the time of the fire: Sam, Rebekah, and Nevaeh. The neighbors ran outside to see what was going on only to find a chaotic scene. Wayne was on the ground with a broken ankle and Billi Jo was still on the roof attempting to escape the smoke and fire and screaming for help; she was holding her 14 month old Nevaeh. After passing the child down to firefighters, Billi Jo was reluctant to get off the roof because her other children were still in the home. Firefighters entered the burning home and found Rebekah but she was already dead and Sam was still alive when they carried him out of the house but he wasn’t stable enough to fly to the burn unit in Nashville. He died of his injuries at the local hospital. Billi Jo was airlifted to a Nashville hospital with second and third degree burns on her legs and one of her arms. Wayne arrived later in Nashville with a shattered ankle.

Before the fire, Wayne and Billi Jo had a pretty normal life. Wayne returned from his first deployment to Iraq nine months earlier. Like most military families, the Smallwood family struggled with their finances and the stresses of military life too. Both Billi Jo and Wayne had children from other relationships. Rebekah and Sam were Billi Jo’s kids and they stayed with her and Wayne’s son Cote lived with his mother. And just over a year before the fire, the couple had their own baby together: Nevaeh. Local authorities brought in federal authorities to investigate the burned out home. They found that one of the smoke detectors had been taken down and placed on a baby highchair. ATF also found a partly burned spout on a gasoline can. They brought in a working dog and the dog discovered an accelerant; the ATF believed gas had been used to start the fire and this was arson. They also found the Smallwood’s car had been vandalized, all the tires had been slashed, and someone left a threatening note keyed on the car.

Investigators interviewed Billi Jo and Wayne Smallwood in the hospital. Billi Jo told them earlier in the day they had driven back from Georgia after visiting Wayne’s family. On this day, Wayne was being especially nice to Sam which was atypical because he was usually pretty hard on him. According to Billi Jo, when they returned home, Wayne took the last of the cash and headed down to a bar on base to drink with his friends; the couple struggled financially. Billi Jo claims that while Wayne was gone, a man called the house threatening to harm Wayne. Billi Jo called the military police to report the threatening phone call, then she called Wayne at the bar. Instead of rushing home to check on his family, Wayne stayed at the bar. The MP’s checked in with Billi Jo but they told her soldier’s quite often played pranks on one another. Eventually, Billi Jo fell asleep with Nevaeh and Wayne fell asleep with Rebekah. When Billi Jo realized the house was on fire, she grabbed Nevaeh so they could get to safety yet Wayne jumped from the second story floor without any of the children.

ATF Agents interviewed the Smallwood’s small circle of family and friends to see if they could find anyone who had a reason to commit this crime. They learned that Wayne was embroiled in a contentious custody battle with his ex-wife. According to Billi Jo, Wayne had recently met with his ex-wife about their son and it lead to an argument; the two fought often. In the meantime, arson investigators determined that because all the locks were engaged downstairs, someone from inside the house had to have started the fire. Agents scrutinized both Billi Jo and Wayne looking for any inconsistencies. Billi Jo told them she went to Wal-Mart earlier in the evening to pick up some items for the baby but when they checked surveillance footage, there was no sign of Billi Jo at the Wal-Mart. When investigators questioned her about the inconsistency, she told them that it was a K-Mart, not Wal-Mart. The second time Billi Jo told the investigators what she bought, it included a gas can. This was a disturbing revelation but Billi Jo’s explanation was simple: military members are fined if they don’t mow the grass.

Prosecutors wanted to prove that Billi Jo torched her home on base in an effort to kill her husband Wayne and collect the $400,000 life insurance pay-out. When constructing their arguments, they noted that the Smallwood’s already had a couple gas cans in the back yard therefore Billi Jo didn’t need to purchase another one. Billi Jo said she forgot to bring a gas can with her when she ran errands and it was easier to just buy another one. ATF Agents visited K-Mart and learned that BJ had in fact visited the store that day. They also learned that the the nozzle on the gas can she bought matched the one found in the fire. And although Billi Jo said she needed to mow the grass, it had not been mowed that day. Federal investigators suspected someone who lived in the house started the fire so they interviewed Wayne and gave him a polygraph; he passed. In a separate interview, Billi Jo admitted she saw blue flames and this was a moment of revelation for the investigators because you are only going to see blue flame when the fire is first lit.

Billi Jo and Wayne argued a lot and Billi Jo testified that Wayne had a violent side too. Billi Jo admitted to confronting Wayne numerous times about his inability to manage money; Wayne’s gambling caused problems too. Investigators theorized Billi Jo had enough of Wayne and this was her motive. On the same night as the fire, the Smallwood’s were overdrawn on their bank account and Wayne had spent the last of their money on alcohol. If Wayne died in the fire, Billi Jo would receive $400,000. Hoping to find out who made the threatening phone calls, prosecutors subpoenaed the telephone records and found no threatening call had been made. Billi Jo says there was a phone call but the phone company said their records are almost 99% accurate. Prosecutors believe everything that comes out of Billi Jo’s mouth is a lie. Billi Jo’s injuries to the legs and one arm were also suspicious. They believed these burns were caused when a fire was ignited in front of her; they believe she was kneeling when she lit the fire.

In preparation for trial, the remains of the Smallwood’s home were removed and taken to a crime lab. It was at this time that forensic experts found overlooked evidence. They determined that the dining room window had been up about 6-8 inches at the time of the fire. This information damaged the prosecution’s theory to an extent because Billi-Jo believed a stranger entered the home and started the fire. The investigators believed either Wayne or Billi Jo started the fire because the house was locked up. Prosecutors moved forward with Billi Jo as their prime suspect because of her connection to a gas can and a financial motive to kill her husband. The prosecution took a look at the intruder theory and couldn’t understand how an adult got through the window and didn’t break or knock anything over. Investigators deduced it was highly unlikely that an intruder would enter the home and not alert the family dog.

Six months after the fire, Billi Jo reported that Wayne was acting erratically and in November 2007, he attacked Billi Jo with a knife. He was convicted of assault and spent eleven months in jail. Billi Jo and Nevaeh move to Georgia with her mother. Two weeks after Wayne was released from jail, Billi Jo was arrested for setting the fire that killed her two children Sam and Rebekah. Five years after the fire that killed Sam and Rebekah, Billi Jo went to trial. The prosecution claimed Billi Jo’s motive was to kill her husband for the life insurance money but the plan backfired and she accidentally killed two of her children. In court, the defense attacked the prosecution’s circumstantial evidence but the jury wasn’t buying it. Billi Jo Smallwood was found guilty and sentenced to twenty-five years in federal prison. Billi Jo’s mother believes she is innocent and that someone out there knows something.

Source: The Ballad of Billi-Jo, True Crime with Aphrodite Jones

Investigation Discovery:

ID Go: When a house fire takes the lives of Wayne and Billi Jo Smallwood’s two young children, everyone on the Fort Campbell military base is grief-stricken for them. But when it turns out the fire was intentionally set – grief turns to outrage. -The Ballad of Billi-Jo, True Crime with Aphrodite Jones (S4,E9)

Editor’s note: With a cable subscription, you can download the free ID Go app and watch all of the Investigation Discovery programming at your convenience. And for those who do not have cable, you can watch “unlocked” episodes on the ID Go app including the latest premieres. Download the ID Go app and binge away. For those who prefer commercial free programming during your binge session, Prime Video has an ID channel: ‘True Crime Files by Investigation Discovery” available for $2.99 a month. It’s a compilation of older seasons but totally worth the cost if you are a true crime addict.

Related Links:
Samuel Fagan (1997-2007)
Rebekah Smallwood (2004-2007)
Rebekah Josephine Smallwood | Sept. 6, 2003-May 29, 2007
Murderpedia: Billi Jo Smallwood
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USA PLAINTIFF v. BILLI JO SMALLWOOD DEFENDANT (memo opinion & order)
United States of America v Billi Jo Smallwood (2012)
Violent Crime, Suicide & Non Combat Death at Fort Campbell, Kentucky (US Army)
A List of Soldiers Targeted & Murdered for Military Survivor and Life Insurance Benefits (SGLI)
True Crime with Aphrodite Jones – The Ballad of Billi Jo
The Ballad of Billi-Jo | True Crime with Aphrodite Jones | ID Web
The Ballad of Billi-Jo | True Crime with Aphrodite Jones (S4,E9)