Body Of Missing Hartford Township Woman Found

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

PAW PAW, Mich. (AP) -- The bodies of two women who were apparently shot to death, including a stay-at-home mother of two missing since earlier this week, have been found buried in southwest Michigan, authorities announced Friday.
The bodies of Amy Henslee, 30, and Tonya Howarth, 36, have been found in Bangor Township, about 60 miles southwest of Grand Rapids, and a suspect is in custody, officials said. The wooded area is north of Henslee's Hartford Township home, where she was last seen Monday.
"It appears that they both died of multiple gunshot wounds," Van Buren County Prosecutor Juris Kaps told reporters at a news conference.
Kaps said police have arrested 34-year-old Junior Lee Beebe on two counts of open murder and two counts of possession of a firearm during a felony. Beebe was expected to be arraigned in court later Friday.
It wasn't immediately known whether he had a lawyer.
Beebe is a cousin of Henslee's husband, said Kaps, a spokesman for the county's Major Crimes Task Force. Howarth was an acquaintance of Henslee, and possibly a friend or girlfriend of the suspect, Kaps said.
Investigators believe that the women were killed Monday morning, Kaps said.
Henslee was last seen at home Monday morning when her husband, James, left for work. The Van Buren County sheriff's department has said he is not a suspect. Amy Henslee's had left her purse inside the house and locked the door behind her.
Authorities said Friday they think Henslee left voluntarily with Beebe.
A day earlier, police had said they didn't suspect foul play in Henslee's disappearance. That assessment changed as the investigation developed.
On Friday morning, Sheriff Dale Gribler expressed condolences to the women's families. He said he delayed the release of information on the case while investigators combed the area where the bodies were discovered.
"We had a lot of work to do with the crime lab at the particular crime scene," Gribler said.

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  • by Anonymous on Jan 28, 2011 at 03:21 PM
    When this story first came out, I thought it was another missing white young mother story that the news media latches onto. It is sad story when the news come out that father/husband was considered the prime suspect until the bodies were found and the news media portrayed him like that. May God be with you as you deal with the lost and the future life with your children. Find someone that will listen to you even if you know they can not help you.
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