Archive for the ‘henry louis wallace’ Category

baucum02Betty Jean “Susie” Baucum (1970-1994) was one of the 11 women killed by the Charlotte Strangler, Henry Louis Wallace, one of America’s worst serial killers. She was a nice, quiet woman. He killed her two days after her 24th birthday.

She was a manager at Bojangles, a fast food place near Eastland Mall in east Charlotte, North Carolina. She came to the city from Laurel Hills, a small town a hundred miles to the east. She was working 50 hours a week to save money to complete her education. She had a three-year-old daugher, B.J.

Her cousin said, “She could make you feel like a million dollars on your worse day. She had the most beautiful smile, one that could light up any room.”

She knew Wallace through his girlfriend, who also worked at Bojangles. Someone else who had worked at Bojangles, Caroline Love, was killed two years earlier. By Wallace. But no one knew.

Wallace was hooked on crack. He needed money bad to buy more. Two weeks had gone by since he had killed and robbed Vanessa Mack. It did not even make the news, so he thought it would be safe to rob and kill someone else.

He went to see Brandi Henderson, but her boyfriend (a friend of Wallace’s) was there. Wallace would come back later, but in the meantime he went to see Baucum. She lived in the same Lake apartments: he had seen her car, a blue 1988 Nissan Pulsar, parked outside.

He asked Baucum if he could use her telephone. She let him in. He acted like he was looking up a number but then when she turned her back, he put his hands round her neck and asked for the combination to unlock the safe at Bojangles. He had robbed Bojangles twice before.

It took her 30 minutes to produce the combination. She wrote it down for him and he let go of her. She asked why he was doing this. He said he was sick and had hurt many people. She said she forgave him and told him he needed help. That got him angry: he pushed her to floor and they fought. He got the upper hand, put a towel round her neck and held it so tight she nearly passed out. He took her to the bedroom, undressed her and raped her and killed her.

He took $80 from her purse as well as her keys, her television and her gun. She had got the gun for protection a while back when her roommate had moved out.

He put the stuff in her car and sold the television for crack. He went back to get her VCR (and to make sure she was dead) and sold that too. Then he went on to rape, kill and rob Brandi Henderson that same night.

Later he got rid of Baucum’s car, wiping off the fingerprints. But there was one place he forgot to wipe: the trunk in the back. It would prove to be his undoing.


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brandisfuneral2Brandi June Henderson (1975-1994) was a sweet woman killed by one of America’s worst serial killers, Henry Louis Wallace, the Charlotte Strangler. She was just 18, a high school student. He also tried to kill her ten-month-old baby, Tyrece. Henderson’s murder helped to lead the police to Wallace.

Wallace was a friend of her boyfriend, Verness Lamar “Squeaky” Woods. He and Wallace worked together at Chuck E. Cheese. The year before they had worked together at Golden Corral – along with Henderson herself.

Henderson lived in the Lake apartments in east Charlotte, North Carolina, right near the Eastland Mall. (They are now called the Sailboat Bay Apartments.) Wallace often came by even when Woods was not there. On the night of March 8th 1994 he came there to rob, rape and kill her.

When he first came to the apartment Woods was there, so Wallace said he was leaving town and wanted to say goodbye. He then visited one of their neighbours, Betty Baucum, and robbed and killed her. After that he came back. Henderson was alone.

She let him in. He pressed her to him and demanded money. She gave him what little she had: $15 in her purse and some change in an old Pringles can. Then he took her to her bedroom and forced her to have sex. After that she was on her knees praying. He said he was not going to hurt her and asked for a hug. When she hugged him he put a towel round her neck and killed her.

After that Wallace heard the baby crying. He put a towel round his neck too till he stopped crying. Then he took Henderson’s television and stereo, put them in the back of Baucum’s car and later sold them to buy some crack.

Later that night when Woods came back from work he found her dead but he was able to get the baby to the hospital in time to save his life.

Because Henderson willingly let the killer into the apartment, the police saw that it had to be someone she knew. They also knew the killer drove Baucum’s car and left his handprint on the back of it. Those two facts led them to Wallace.

Her funeral was heartbreaking. The pastor said:

We are living in some terrible times. We are living in some troubled times where the value of a human life is too low.

She was laid to rest wearing a pink dress, holding a picture of her baby boy.

At the trial her cousin, one of the last people to talk to her, asked Wallace why he killed her. He gave no answer.

People remember her as being sweet, as someone who loved people.

She met Verness Woods two years before. They had Tyrece ten months before she was killed. She loved being a mother.

Her son Tyrece is now 15 and lives in Chicago with Woods, his father.


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Shawna Hawk (1972-1993) was the fourth of 11 women killed by Henry Louis Wallace, the Charlotte Strangler, an American serial killer. He killed her on February 19th 1993, two months after she turned 20. It took 13 months and seven more dead women before the police found him.

A month after Shawna’s murder, her mother and godmother founded Mothers of Murdered Offspring (MOM-O). They helped to bring Wallace to justice.

Hawk was living with her mother in East Charlotte, North Carolina. She was going to Piedmont Central Community College. She was studying law to become a paralegal. She worked at the nearby Taco Bell, where a nice young man named Henry Louis Wallace hired her.

Shawna Hawk was beautiful, shy and unassuming. All dressed up and on the way to the junior prom her date told her she did not need the false fingernails. So she took them off and threw them out the car window onto Independence Boulevard.

Without anyone asking her one day she went down to McDonald’s and lied about her age so she could work to help support her mother.

When her mother came home on that day she did not see Shawna’s car. Maybe she was with her godson. But something was not right: her purse and coat were still there. Then the mother of the godson called and asked where Shawna was. As it turned out Taco Bell and Shawna’s boyfriend did not know either.

The boyfriend came over and searched the house looking for some sign of what became of Shawna. Then he pulled back the shower curtain….

Henry Louis Wallace had come by earlier that afternoon to visit Shawna. They had gone on a date the summer before, but they were just friends. They talked for an hour about this and that. Then Shawna started teasing him about a fight he had had with his girlfriend.

Somehow that pushed the wrong button inside him. He hit her over the head and knocked her out and then put a cord or something round her neck to cut off her breathing. He filled the bathtub, put her body in it, took $50 (ten crowns) and left.

He went to the funeral. At the viewing he sat all alone at the back of the room with a strange look on his face, just staring.

Several months later Wallace ran into Shawna’s mother. He told her how he missed Shawna, how he was sorry to hear about her death. He gave her a hug.

In that moment she remembered that she forgot to put Wallace on her list of Shawna’s old boyfriends as possible killers. But then she thought it could not possibly be him: he was such a gentleman!

It took the police two months just to find her missing car. It was parked at the college!

It was not till August when three other women turned up dead in East Charlotte that the police began to take the whole thing seriously. Some say it took them so long because Wallace killed “only” black women.

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