May 29, 2008
James Hawkins - Murders Girl Friend And Then Forces 12 Year Old Daughter To Help Cut Woman's Body Into Pieces
Memphis, TN (The Weekly Vice) -- James Hawkins, a man accused of killing his long-time girlfriend and the cutting off her head, feet and hands, apparently also forced his 12 year old daughter to participate in the gruesome acts on her own mother.
James Hawkins faced a judge on Wednesday during a hearing where Hawkins is accused of killing his girlfriend Charlene Gaither and then dismembering her body before dumping her in the Coldwater Creek in DeSoto County.
The court heard testimony from Gaither and Hawkins' 12 year old daughter, who told the court about what happened on the day of her mother's murder.
The girl said that during an argument, her father got a knife from their kitchen and stabbed Gaither in the neck, before ultimately choking her to death.
The girl then testified that afterwards, her father made her help cut off Gaither's head with a saw. She then helped cut off the woman's hands and feet. She went on to say she went along with Hawkins to dispose of the body and the dismembered body parts in various locations.
According to police, Hawkins was captured on security cameras purchasing the saw he used to cut Gaither's body into pieces. He then cleaned the saw up and returned it back to the store he purchased it at.
At the conclusion of Wednesday's hearing, the judge ordered that the case be sent to the grand jury.
James Hawkins has been charged with first-degree murder.
The Weekly Vice Opinion:
On a side note, we also obtained a copy of the restraining order Gaither filed after Hawkins physically assaulted her and then threatened to harm her further on at least two occasions. Gaither had allegedly told Hawkins that she had decided to leave him, which apparently lead to the woman's eventual demise.
It's sad to know this woman reached out for help, knowing she was in serious trouble - but couldn't seem to get the protection she needed to prevent this gruesome murder.
But involving a 12 year old girl in cutting up her own mother is just beyond comment, as it really goes beyond any kind of rational explanation
The Weekly Vice