(pictured left: James Henslee, Junior Lee Beebe, Amy Henslee)
Note: James Henslee is not a suspect at this time nor am I saying he is guilty of any crime. He may be a purely innocent victim in this horrible tragedy. However, as a criminal profiler, I find good reason that James Hensle should be furthered investigated and properly eliminated as a participant in the murders of Amy and Tonya (or brought to justice if sufficient evidence is found to connect him to the crime).
I know this is not going to be a very popular profile considering the terrible tragedy of the brutal murders of Amy Henslee and Tonya Howarth, especially now that Junior Lee Beebe is in custody and charged with killing them.
There is no denying that the women were shot to death on his property and buried on his property. However, I believe this is not the whole story and I hope the detectives make darned sure that Beebe acted alone and no one else is involved in the murders of Amy and Tonya.
From the beginning, the story told by James Enslee bothered me and each interview with him sent up red flags. Although there can always be bad reporting that colors one’s perception or facts missing or simply not facts at all, James Enslee’s behaviors and statements never sat right with me.
In spite of many people claiming he could just be a very loving husband, I believe James was a very controlling husband.
In his latest interview, he actually states he calls home four to five times a day, not just at 10 AM.
Considering he also comes home for lunch, this means he contacts his wife nearly every hour during the work day. This is extremely concerning behavior. Also concerning is that Amy is home without a car, a cell phone, or a computer.
While it has been tossed about maybe they just don’t want to spend their money on those things or that they prefer a simple life or that they did have two cars (just one wasn’t working), and she did have a cell phone that was out of minutes, one has to also wonder why she also stopped going to college and quit working.
It was said there were financial problems and that is why she stopped going to school but this does not explain why she quit her job as well (and if there were financial problems, it seems to me the job would help alleviate them).
The next question is why would Junior Lee Beebe come and take Amy home to kill her but she wasn’t a bit afraid of him. And why if Amy left with Beebe and she knew her husband expected her to answer the phone, didn’t she call him and tell him she was going out with Beebe (and, perhaps, Tonya).
If James were involved in a planned murder of his wife, having his cousin come in broad daylight doesn’t seem the greatest idea, especially with the Neighborhood Watch lady right across the street (she is the one who saw the black truck and a girl getting into it). If this wasn’t a prearranged plan between James and Junior Beebe, then James did not know about Beebe coming by.
Therefore, Beebe either forced Amy into the car by gunpoint (but there seems to be no evidence of a handgun and no shotgun seen by the neighbor and it isn’t a likely scenario) or he used a ruse (“James told me to come get you” …which means Amy doesn’t need to phone James to tell him), or Amy went willingly with Beebe because she wanted to.
Perhaps, since she had no purse with her, she was just going to hang out with Beebe and Tonya for an hour or so and then have Beebe bring her back. Maybe, she stayed to long and this leads me to the most likely scenario I can come up with at this time.
James calls home at 10 AM and gets no answer. He keeps trying and when a half hour passes, he wonders where his wife is and drives home.
He is not so much worried as he is pissed. He gets home and finds she has left but without her purse. He likely knows exactly what this means. He knows exactly where to go look for her. He drives over to Beebe’s and finds her there. What he thought was happening when he came into Beebe’s home, especially if he is the very jealous, possessive type, and what was really happening, we would probably never know for sure.
If James became enraged, then it is possible he was the one who picked up the shotgun and lost control. Beebe, while seeming to admit to killing Tonya, says he did not kill Amy. That is rather unusual considering the circumstances. But, perhaps, he is telling the truth. If James killed Amy with Beebe’s shotgun and Tonya started freaking out and saying they needed to call the police, it is possible Beebe panicked and killed her. Now the two men are stuck with a bad situation and need to deal with it.
The women are buried in the back.
Maybe James helps with some of the digging and then says he has to leave and for Beebe to finish it up.
He goes home and calls the parents to start his alibi and appearance of innocence. He claims he was “cruising” around town looking for Amy to cover the time he is at Beebe’s and to account for the possibility of his car being seen anywhere on the roads. He does not say he went any specific place because he didn’t actually do that.
When he arrives home, he “hangs out” with Amy's parents waiting for the moment when his two boys come home because, at this point in time, the reality of Amy not coming home is impossible to deny.
If any of my theory is true, there would be no evidence of phone calls from the time he arrived home the first time until the time he arrived home the second time.
If he were really looking for Amy in town, I would think he might also make phone calls to friends and relatives (unless he does not have a cell, in which case, it would be odd if he didn’t make phone calls to friends and relatives before he started cruising around town).
If my theory is true, he should have no alibi between his first arrival at home and the second. No one in town will have seen him.
If James was involved, a cover-up would have gone more smoothly had not the neighbor lady actually seen Beebe’s truck at the house. Now, James has a problem. He clearly had to know Beebe was at his house on Monday; by that evening he would have talked to the neighbors to find out if they saw anything.
Yet, the police do not go to Beebe’s property to look for Amy. James does not go there either, in spite of the fact the neighbor tells him a girl got in the black truck that came to his house (and he has to know it would be Amy and no one else).
Why does James not go beat down Beebe’s door looking for his wife? Why does he not tell the police that he thinks Beebe has her and might have done something to her? It appears the information doesn’t get to the police for a couple of days when they get a tip in about the black vehicle. The information should have come from James, not a tip, if he was not involved in the crime.
Eventually, it seems, James admits he knew about the black truck but “he had already ruled that out”.
This is odd language (he actually uses a lot of police lingo when discussing the disappearance of his wife which is not uncommon for guilty parties) and an odd choice considering that this was the one and only lead and, like James said himself, “Someone she knows MUST have stopped by…”.
If Amy went with that “someone who stopped by that she knew” and James knew who that someone was, when Amy didn’t come back from Beebe’s like a good wife should, he should assume she is being held against her will and go save her. But, he never bothered. In fact, he never talked again to his cousin and good buddy, which considering Beebe knew Amy was missing, was weird in itself.
In all of his statements that I have analyzed (and for a more thorough and excellent statement analysis, check out Peter Hyatt’s conclusions at Statement Analysis of James Henslee and James Henslee: Statement Analysis), I find a repetitive use of the phrase “safe at home” or some variant of it.
I believe James means this; IF Amy had stayed home, she would have been safe; safe from others and safe from his own reactions when he finds her with others. I find James inappropriately emotionless through his early interviews, but appropriately emotional when he speaks of her body being found (but whether that is because he fears he is now in big trouble or this is when it hits him full force that the nightmare actually happened and Amy isn’t coming home).
Then, he is way too cheery and ready to move on in life in his interview after Beebe’s arrest - so soon after the discovery of his wife’s murder and who murdered her, you would expect a different demeanor.
Finally, his response when questioned about what he would say to Junior Beebe is very telling. You can see a bit of rage suppressed and then he says,
“"Ask him what the hell is wrong with him." Why would James care what was wrong with him? He didn’t simply piss on your front lawn (“What the hell is wrong with you, Bro?) or got drunk and made a pass at your wife (“What the hell is wrong with you, Asshole? We’re friends and that’s my damned wife?). Beebe supposedly premeditatedly abducted and murdered James’s wife and the mother of his children, destroyed his life, and the angriest thing he can come up with is “What the hell is wrong with you?”
Maybe what is happening is that James is blaming Beebe for what led to the murder of the women and not for the murder of his wife.
And, if this is true, I hope the police continue to search out the motive for the crimes and make sure James is not as innocent a victim as he claims and as many people believe him to be. Maybe he should take that polygraph after all.
Criminal Profiler Pat Brown