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Friday, December 2, 2016

The Timothy Hennis Triple-Murder Case

     U.S. Air Force officer Gary Eastburn and his wife Kathryn were married in 1975. Ten years later, Captain Eastburn, the chief of Air Traffic Control at Pope Air Force Base near Fayetteville, North Carolina, received a new assignment to England. Before the couple's planned departure to Great Britain, they decided to find a new home for their English Setter. The Eastburn family had grown and now included three children. Kara was five, Erin, three, and the baby, Jana, was almost two.

     Army Sergeant Timothy Hennis, stationed at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, lived in Fayetteville with his wife Angela. The 27-year-old saw an ad in a free classified newspaper regarding the Eastburn family's offer to sell their dog for $10 to anyone willing to give the pet a good home. In early May 1985, in response to the ad, Sergeant Hennis met with Kathryn Eastburn at her house on Summerhall Road. The sergeant went home that day with the English Setter.

     On May 10, 1985, a neighbor, aware that Captain Eastburn was attending a squadron officers' training school in Montgomery, Alabama, noticed that a few newspapers had not been picked up at their house. Concerned about the wellbeing of Kathryn and her three children, the neighbor went to the front door to check on them. From outside the house the neighbor heard a baby crying. When he knocked on the door and no one answered, the neighbor called the police.

     Upon entering the Eastburn dwelling, police officers were stunned by what they found. Kathryn, Kara, and Erin had been repeatedly stabbed. The killer had also slashed their throats. The baby in the crib was severely dehydrated, just hours from death. Kathryn had been tied up and raped.

     The killer had attempted to clean up the crime scene but had been overwhelmed by the task. There was too much blood. The only items missing from the house were a small amount of cash and the Eastburn ATM card.

     An Eastburn neighbor said he had seen a tall man wearing a dark Members Only jacket walking from the house a couple of days before the police were called to the scene. This man was carrying a large trash bag and drove off in a white Chevrolet. Based on this witness' description of the suspect, a police artist drew a sketch of the man's face.

     Following the news coverage of the triple murder, Sergeant Hennis voluntarily paid a visit to the police station. He told detectives that when he saw a photograph of Kathryn Eastburn on television he realized she was the woman from whom he had recently purchased the dog.

     Because Sergeant Hennis was tall, looked like the man in the police sketch, had just taken a dark Members Only jacket to a dry cleaner, and drove a white Chevrolet Chevette, he became the prime suspect in the case. A witness picked Hennis out of a police line-up as the man seen carrying the trash bag out of the murder house. Shortly after being seen leaving the Eastburn house with the bag, Hennis was seen burning items in an oil drum in his backyard.

     Detectives determined that Hennis and his wife were separating and that he was having money problems. A witness saw Hennis using an ATM machine about the time someone used the Eastburn card.

     Sergeant Hennis denied killing the mother and her children. He said he was home that night building his daughter a dollhouse. County prosecutor William VanStory charged Hennis with three counts of first-degree murder and one count of rape.

     Because the prosecution didn't have a confession, physical evidence linking Hennis to the murder scene, or an eyewitness to the massacre, VanStory offered Hennis a plea bargain. The defendant, perhaps realizing that the prosecution's case was entirely circumstantial, turned down the deal.

     The Hennis murder trial got underway in the spring of 1986. According to the prosecutor's theory of the case, the defendant, after buying the dog, returned to the Eastburn house to have sex with Kathryn. He knew that Captain Eastburn was in Montgomery, Alabama. When Kathryn rejected his sexual advances he flew into a rage and murdered her and her two children.

     The witness who picked Hennis out of the police line-up as the man leaving the murder house carrying the trash bag took the stand for the prosecution. Another witness testified that the Eastburn ATM card had been used on two occasions after the murders. Twice the card user had withdrawn $150. The prosecutor pointed out that the defendant owned his landlord $300 in back rent.

     The Hennis trial lasted three weeks. The jury, after ten hours of deliberation, found the defendant guilty as charged. The judge sentenced Hennis to death.

     The convicted man's attorneys appealed the case to the North Carolina Supreme Court on grounds the jurors had been unduly prejudiced by the introduction into evidence of the graphic murder scene photographs. In 1988, the state supreme court granted Hennis a new trial.

     A year after winning the appeal, Hennis' attorneys, at his second trial, took a more aggressive approach. They put forward their own narrative of the case. Kathryn Eastburn and her children had been murdered by a mysterious stranger who for months had made phone threats against the family. Moreover, a murder scene head hair found on the Eastburn bed did not come from any member of the family or the defendant. Several bloodstains in the house did not match the blood types of the family or Sergeant Hennis. (The Hennis trial predated the DNA era. Blood could only be placed into groups.)

     The defense attorneys argued that the overkill nature of the murders was not consistent with a man who had merely been rebuffed by a woman with whom he had wanted casual sex. According to the defense, the Eastburn family had been slaughtered by a maniac who, for whatever reason, hated them.

     In cross-examining the prosecution's witness, the defendant's attorneys did a good job of raising doubts regarding their credibility. The prosecutors, on the other hand, seemed overconfident they would secure another guilty verdict. For that reason they were shocked when the jury returned a verdict of not guilty.

     Timothy Hennis, following his acquittal, re-enlisted in the Army. Promoted to Staff Sergeant, he did tours of duty in Saudi Arabia and in Somalia before being stationed back in the states at Fort Lewis, Washington.

     In 2006, years after he had retired from the military, the Army called the 48-year-old back into service and sent him to Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

     Army prosecutors, shortly after Staff Sergeant Hennis reported for duty at Fort Bragg, charged him in military court with triple-murder. The Army had called Hennis back to active duty for the sole purpose of the court martial.

     The Hennis legal team sprang back into action. Defense attorneys accused the military of violating their client's right against double jeopardy under the Fifth Amendment. However, due to legal precedent that allowed the court martial of a soldier who had been acquitted in a civilian court of the same crime, the Army's case moved forward.

     Army prosecutors had new evidence that incriminated Hennis. A North Carolina DNA analyst had matched his DNA to semen found inside Kathryn Eastburn. Advanced DNA science had made the identification of this rape kit vaginal swab evidence possible.

     At the 2010 court martial trial, the Hennis defense argued that merely because the defendant and Kathryn Eastburn had engaged in consensual sex didn't prove that he had murdered her and the children. The defense attorneys also brought up the unidentified hair follicle and the unaccounted for bloodstains. Moreover, DNA found under Kathryn's fingernail did not match the defendant.

     The case put on by the Hennis defense was no match for the testimony of the prosecution's DNA expert. The military jury, following a three-day trial, found Hennis guilty of three counts of premeditated murder. The judge sentenced him to death. (Hennis cannot be executed without presidential approval. The military hasn't executed anyone since 1961.)

     In 2012, after numerous federal appeals involving defense claims that the DNA evidence had been contaminated by the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to review the Hennis case.

     With their client in solitary confinement on death row at Fort Leavenworth military prison in Kansas, the Hennis legal team, in March 2014, appealed the court martial verdict to the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals for The Armed Forces. The Hennis defense argued that because Harris had been unlawfully ordered to active duty in 2006, the Army did not have jurisdiction to court martial him.

     On October 14, 2014, the Armed Forces Court of Appeals denied the Hennis petition. At this point it appeared that his attorneys had run out of legal remedies in this one-of-a-kind murder case.

     

103 comments:

  1. Hey Tim!!!! U should have just called a hooker!! Much cheaper then all these legal fees u loser!!!

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  2. ROT IN HELL TIMOTHY HENNIS!

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    1. ACETENBOMBER, sounds like you use those whores on a regular basis ? Were you there ?

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    2. Guess what Tim 2016 and you're still a star saw you on T.V. AGAIN. You have no business breathing the same air as the rest of us for so long. I pray the next time I see you on T.V. it's announcing your execution.

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    3. Up yours I know Tim and Angie I would trust them both with my grandbabies and FYI I have known them since 1986

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    4. you are in some kind of terrible denial

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    5. I can't say without a doubt he's guilty, I don't understand why everyone is so quick to condemn Tim when there are still questions that haven't been answered, for example what about what that girl said about the short guy with stringy hair she saw leaving the house, or the lock of hair that doesn't match Tim's? And yes the semen found in the mother was his but the defense was right that only proves there was sexual intercourse, and a question I personally have is what about wounds? Try to image you are the mother and u are being attacked in your home, and you know that in this moment the only line of defense between your daughters and this attacker is you, any mother would say that they would have fought that attacker to death, so with that in mind did Tim have any wounds consistent with carring out a brutal assult on somebody, granted the killer had a knife but I still think there should be wounds on the attacker as well.

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  3. Here is an Interesting point: There is nothing in the article in which he claims he did not murder in cold blood a mother and a little 5 and 3 year old little girl, just that he wants to get away with it based on a technicality.

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    1. That is what I thought. His family, to this day, likely believe he was innocent. If you do some searches, it looks like both his daughter & wife (who never divorced him) both live in Kansas where he is serving his much deserved life sentence. Katie's parents still live in Kansas; interesting since the crime wasn't committed there & Hennis never lived in KS before that. I also hope he rots in hell.

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  4. As a long time crime buff, I can say without a doubt that Tim Hennis is INNOCENT! It's not above the realm of possibility for the Cumberland County detectives, prosecutors and state crime lab to have purposely contaminate the vaginal sample with Hennis' blood and semen sample that was procured in 1985. Especially after Beaver and Richardson handed the prosecution's ass to them in retrial.

    Also, the "DNA" that's supposedly the linchpin of the military case, doesn't even match Hennis 100% (something that would be a 100% if he truly did it). The DNA matched Hennis only 67 out of 300...but it also matched African American males 10 out of 300 (which would explain the African pubic hair found in the living room) and it also matched Asian males 10 out of 300. And in case you don't know what the 300 means, it means that 67 white men out of 300 could've matched. ..10 African American males out 300 could've matched, and 10 out of 300 Asian males could've matched.

    Considering the fact that Cumberland County and the state of North Carolina never looked for any other possible suspect, it's more than conceivable that they framed Hennis.

    FREE TIM HENNIS!!!!!!

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    1. I wonder if they tested Patrick Cone's DNA.

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    2. You are an idiot.

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    3. Tim Henniis deserves to die for what he did DNA proved what he did your stupid if you think he should be free!!!

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    4. And just how did they get his sperm to plant it. You're an idiot. Tim is guilty. DNA is constantly used to set people free. It also proves guilt. Now he says they had consensual sex. They should fry us ass now. No more appeals.

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    5. Has the DNA under her fingernails been tested? Why hasn't the vaginal swab been retested with state of the art equipment to more definitively confirm if it's Henniis' or not? There was a lot of forensic evidence - plenty to prove with near certainty if it was Henniis or not yet it doesn't seem like they've done a thorough analysis of it, or if they did, it hasn't been published.

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    6. How can any human being be so stupid as to believe that Tim Hennis is not the murderer of those 3 innocent victims?

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    7. Tim is the seed of Satan!

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    8. What dream world do you live in. Sociopath Hennis has to overcome so many coincidences that it becomes ludicrous. He scammed himself over 20 years of living as a free monster. Don't embarrass yourself with anymore Free Hennis actions.

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    9. Also, the "DNA" that's supposedly the linchpin of the military case, doesn't even match Hennis 100% (something that would be a 100% if he truly did it).

      -- Too bad that is not the defense argument. Instead, they offered this "my client had consensual sex with the victim" bullshit to explain away the damning semen evidence.

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    10. The case was botched from the beginning. I would never state with absolute certainty he is innocent but I can tell you that if you have a head hair and a "Pubic hair" right there that isn't his or the families...where did it come from? Plus a person could have had sex with her without killing her. I will not rant but when such s penalty is to be imposed the prosecution should remove any doubt. There is too much in this case that is uncertain but a military Judge would not allow testing of the evidence. The person having sex with her may not have killed her but the person who cleaned up blood surely did. So let the bloody towel be tested. If I comes back as Tim ok but if not you should look elsewhere.

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    11. He's guilty as sin and his supporters all made fools out themselves by vocally stating otherwise only to be proven wrong by dna.

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    12. You are so wrong it's not even funny! It was a 1 in 12 thousand trillion match, I have no idea where you get your 300 number from? But that sounds like a damn good match to me. This is why your stupid argument was never used in his court case, or any of his appeals, there best hope was to suggest that it was indeed his DNA, but that it was not rape, but consensual! And all this after Timothy Hennis had always previously claimed no such contact. The fun part about this is, that the guys wife was out of town at the time, and he had already tried, and failed to hook up with an ex girlfriend of his. Of which he eventually admitted to police. So if he did have sexual contact with the victim, why not just say so from the start??? Now their only hope to get him off is to keep fighting for a loop hole. What does that really tell you about the evidence in this case?

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    13. IMO, the clincher is that there was hair and male DNA under the fingernails of the mother and one of the children - NONE of which matched Hennis's DNA.

      The vaginal swab was the ONLY DNA that matched him. Perhaps there was contamination, deliberate or otherwise, or perhaps they had consensual sex. But without explaining the evidence that didn't match him, they had no right to declare him guilty BRD.

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    14. Would love to know who the DNA under the victims fingernails was as well as the hair found in the bed. Maybe the night walker John

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  5. SO GLAD this devil no longer walks free. ROT, ROT, ROT you bastard. Your wife may be fooled but no one else with a brain is!

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  6. Whose DNA was under Mrs. Eastman's fingernails?

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    1. The police will not the dna ..they know there wrong

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    2. The police cannot test the DNA because A) this is no longer a state police matter and B) there is not enough DNA present under the fingernails for DNA testing.

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    3. If there's not enough for DNA testing to gain a profile, how do you know it's NOT Hennis?

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  7. The need to test the DNA that was found under the mother and daughters nails that did not match Timothy...that the military will not test

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    1. His DNA was found inside the mother in the form of his sperm

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    2. I agree with you fully, this is a dreadful situation. Surely every piece of evidence should be tests now, to once and for all prove this case either way. I would love to see someone outside the Army and the local Police Force who botched this from the very beginning, take the case up, check all the evidence and finally find out who really killed these three beautiful people. As it is now the husband and father will never know the truth and he will never truly be at peace while there is so much contentious evidence.

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  8. While I firmly believe Hennis committed the murders I also firmly believe he was illegally convicted due to the actions of the US Army.

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    1. You might feel a little differently Bonnie, if it had been your little girls...oh wait, do you even have children?

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    2. The law doesn't change based on your family dynamics so no, I don't think she would have felt different. And if you think someone needs to be a parent to feel the devastating effects of a child's murder then you are the ignorant one. Her statement in no way focuses on the morality of the situation, solely the legal ramifications. Interesting though how you completely miss the argument because you are so distracted by your overemotional reaction.

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  9. Do you people even read the whole DNA report before you post? Wether he did it or not, that DNA test does not prove anything no matter how the prosecution tries to manipulate the results.

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    1. Where can we read the "whole" DNA report? Thanks for the tip

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  10. .The DNA under the finger nails did NOT match Mr. Hennis. Who's DNA was it? Is it possible that Mr. Hennis had an accomplice?

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  11. The dna under the fingernails could have come from anyone that she had come in contact with that day and seeing as there wasn't enough under her nails to test then that's probably exactly what it was just a random encounter with someone not associated with the murder....and how convenient he now says that he had sex with this victim (consensual at that), how ridiculous is it that we are supposed to believe that this mother of 3 and wife who is getting ready to move says "yeah, come back tomorrow and we'll have sex while my kids play in the next room"....this demon is exactly where he belongs.....

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    1. Yhott, that comment doesn't make sense. It apparently was enough to test as they proved it was Hennis's. And while I would agree it *could* be anyone's, people do not normally get the DNA of others under their nails. It normally gets there as a result of scratching at someone. Further, if there is blood and hair evidence that doesn't match Hennis, then that becomes a huge red flag that has to be resolved before you can condemn someone to death. However, I DO agree that it is highly unlikely that Kathryn decided to have consensual sex with someone she never met before right about the time she and two of her daughters get slaughtered. Definitely very incriminating but I don't think the prosecution has done everything they need to do to earn a death sentence conviction.

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    2. "Foreign" DNA could be acquired in any unconscious manner - using a gas pump handle, pushing a public door open, picking up something in a gracery store, opening a trash container...you name it. As long as the DNA has not been found comingled with blood or substantial skin cells it could have come from anywhere and be completely unknown.

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  13. There was sufficient circumstantial evidence for one jury to convict him. The DNA evidence served to confirm all of the other evidence pointing to his guilt. As others have mentioned, in earlier questioning before the DNA evidence definitely proved that he had sex with her, he had denied having sex with her. He is guilty as hell. What a monster!

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  14. This was the second time I had heard of these murders and it just proves and that anyone is capable of doing anything.... Even the people with squeaky clean backgrounds. I'm not always proud of how our justice system works but a person 100% guilty should be behind bars by any means.

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  15. the first jury had it right. The second jury ignored the eye witnesses putting him at the crime scene and at the ATM. While often times eye witness testimony will wrongly convict, it was accurate here.

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  16. Kill that chunk of rotten flesh! May he truley rot in the most uncomfortable place in hell...

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  17. Eye witnesses at the sceen and during the time he was using the victims ATM card plus the DNA evidence and there are people out there that think he is innocent.Your all as naive and ignorant as the second civilian jury!

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  18. It's highly unlikely that he was home building a dollhouse. I do wonder if his wife confirmed his alibi and how she can actually live w herself if she fabricated it to keep him out of jail or why she has stood behind him after his last ditch effort was to lie about consensual sex. I hope he's having the same kind of consensual sex while waiting to die.

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  19. Hennis wife had to know with all the evidence and the lies he told about where he was. Then burning items the same night and not coming home.. the car, the dog the witnesses, the ATM - obviously he did it . The whisnot author and Hennis' lawyer are delusional and it is sickening. RIHF

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  20. how on earth can you people say without a doubt that this man is guilty!? is this the only article you've read on the case? he had an alibi for the night he supposedly used the card,unfortunately the prosecution stole the log.
    his jacket had NO blood on it.
    the eyewitness himself said he thought he was not guilty.
    the judge in the final trial wouldn't even allow the defense to use DNA testing on any of the other evidence from the scene..like how is that even a thing!?

    oh and for all of you saying the wife wouldn't have slept with a stranger..LOL this is fayetteville. I'd say it's less likely for military families to be faithful.

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    1. Agreed. I wouldn't like to talk I'll of the dead but it begs a question of a head hair and a pubic hair that do not match Hennis...was she lonely and needing company. I do not care who she sleeps with but in a Death Penalty case I need more evidence than he slept with her. Also a savage murder of children points to either someone who knew the family or a person who could never have avoided trouble for 20 years in the military. Obviously someone else was there to have a head hair and pubic hair on the victim and in her bed that do not match the suspect or anyone who lived in the house. Plus DNA under the fingers that while not a complete profile still do not match Hennis. Plus if I'm gonna kill someone last thing I do is Admit I bought her dog! I mean come on people. The crime is definitely heinous but let's test the evidence and find the real person!

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    2. I agree. There is a lot of adultery in Fayetteville and Fort Bragg. lol

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    3. I have been a military wife for 20 years and have been separated by deployments many times, 10 to be exact and I have NEVER committed adultery. What a horrible blanket statement to make about a woman (the victim) that you know NOTHINg about.

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    4. why assume she didn't know Tim Hennis prior to her murder?

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  21. He killed the children because they could identify him, but not the one who couldn't. There's no other logical reason to murder 2 of 3 children. Since he was there the night before, AND by his own admission there the night of the murders to try and have sex.
    Rejection is a strong emotion and very likely to trigger violence. His ex rejected him, then the victim. I'd guess he might have been intoxicated and the second rejection triggered his rage.
    It's only sad he got 20 years to be free.

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  22. First off no blood on the jacket guess he took it off before he killed 3 people.
    Second of even in 1985 Captain's wives don't go out looking for strange because they love the paycheck and officer wives gossip. Love the military families not being faithful way to stereotype. Third if you did have consensual sex with the victim you wait 25 years to says you did. If your wife stays with you on death row she really going to get pissed you cheated on her? If the military had court had his ass in 1985 and he was acquitted then he still would have been tried for murder in a criminal court. Ask Jeffery McDonald serving life for killing his wife and two children cleared in the Article 32 fried in state court because of you are Army and you kill and make headlines you will go to jail.

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    1. It's hard to make out your position due to your grammar. Yet 'no blood on his jacket' is an almost laughable point. I don't think you'd rape someone with your jacket on.
      CSI in 85 wasn't all that great, and it's not like he was caught at the scene, so why anyone would expect to find evidence on his clothing is beyond me.
      He admits to being at the scene, a matter of hours, mins before the crime looking for sex. Hmmm. Then he just left and coincidently someone else showed up and raped and murdered 2 of 3 children?
      Let's not forget his DNA. Which is like the finger of God pointing down to the perpetrator(s). How many women are married with three kids and are willing to have sex with some guy who she's met once, then shows up at night trying to get laid? Better yet what "man" would show up and try to have sex with a married woman at night, at her house, with 3 kids with her? A scumbag that's who.

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    2. I enjoy reading points of view. I read alot and like to think from the other side. The only two things that come to mind immediately is presumed guilty and lack of substantial evidence. Most importantly is the dna sample in this case right? In retrospect you would think so because that is all the evidence they have. The blood all over the house is not present. Wait... It does and its no match. Then again the dna under the victims nails is not a match either. Guess thats coincidence as well. Thats two strikes against the case. The third would be no one knows when they murdered. Dont say officers wives dont cheat because they cheat all the time. The man is guilty at best of adultery but since they cant determine who really did the murders a man sits on death row like many others and is completely innocent. Fact check stop opinionating.

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    3. Hey, the facts are this: witnesses saw him all over the place, he used their ATM card, he had sex with her and didn't admit to that until AFTER his DNA was found inside her. He was seen carrying a plastic bag from the crime scene, his physical appearance and car matched descriptions given by the witnesses...I study a lot of crimes and I'm in the genetics field...DNA under the fingernails were found inconclusive and the DNA found in her vagina was a good enough match to convict him. The pubic hair could of been planted. It all points to Hennis, so stop living in a dream world!!

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    4. You probably need to do some more fact checking. Hennis is the ONLY suspect in this case. Witnesses saw him leaving the scene with a plastic bag in a members only jacket that he immediately had dry cleaned. He was spotted burning something most likely the bag, in an oil drum. He was seen using their ATM card and how coincidental that he owed 300 for rent and withdrew $150x2. He never admitted to having sex with her till AFTER the DNA showed him to be a match. You're living in a dream world if you think there was someone else. Murderers usually want to help find another perpetrator to take the focus off of themselves. They end up incriminating themselves because they're sick people. It points to him, the unidentified pubic hair could of been planted...by Hennis...maybe..and the fingernail DNA was inconclusive...so it simply points to him, get over it and move on...

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  23. Why was John Andrew Raupach never questioned? He was 17 years old at the time and wondering the streets at 3AM. I find this a bit strange. Everything I have read about this case just states that John Raupach was never a suspect. Why not? He looked eerily similar to Tim Hennis and was also wearing a Members Only jacket. I looked into this man who is now 47 years old and he has very little regard for the law according to his criminal record.

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    1. Maybe his DNA was not compared to that of nail scraping of those 3 victims...but did he not come forth and testify in behalf of Hennis? Anyone deliberately ignoring any obvious evidence as telling as a frantic rape/ murder victims nail scraping should go to Hell themselves

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  24. Hennis is guilty. From other articles I've read, he had financial and relationship issues with his wife. She had gotten angry with him over their lack of funds and went home to her parents the day of the murders. He was most likely feeling humiliated so he went to see an ex-girlfriend who also rejected him. By that time it was late at night, he'd been drinking, and then he remembered the kind lady he bought the dog from and decided to stop by her home. I could see her foolishly telling him her husband was away because in the early 1980's people were more trusting than they are now. He probably didn't go there to kill her initially - just for some tea and sympathy and if she warmed up to him, all the better. Of course, she recognized him and opened the door. She probably thought he was there about the dog. Needless to say, things went downhill from there. It was just one rejection too many for him so he lost it and viciously killed her because he was humiliated and angry with his wife and all women who dared to reject him and make him feel inferior. He killed the two older girls because either they saw him there or may have remembered later about the man who bought their dog. He spared the youngest girl because she was in a crib and had probably not seen him and was too young anyway to describe him and be a threat to him. A few days later his wife had returned and while they were watching TV together a news report came on about the murders and it said the police were looking for a man who had answered an ad in the local penny saver and had bought a dog. I'm sure his wife jumped up and said, "Oh my God! That's you!" Then he was forced to go to the police station and admit he had the dog and had been at the crime scene or his wife would have known something was seriously wrong. Granted, the ATM witness and the teen witness could be mistaken and/or making up stories but years later when the cold case squad sent in a vaginal swab, DNA from semen was positively identified as belonging to Hennis. After there was a dispute about the lab it was sent to, they sent a different sample contained in the rape kit to a second lab and it was also positively identified as his. For dirty cops to have planted it, they would have had to have had a sample of his semen which seems highly unlikely. As far as the DNA under Katie's and one of her children's fingernails not belonging to Hennis, from what I understood there was not enough DNA to either include or exclude Hennis. That's not the same thing as saying it didn't belong to him. The only thing that doesn't make sense is the size 9 shoe print reportedly found when Hennis was a size 12. Make of that what you will!

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  25. How come the DNA evidence alone has so many people convinced that he's guilty? I live in Fayetteville, NC, and it is not outside the realm of possibility that an army wife would cheat on her husband. Maybe the sex was consensual...

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    1. that's pretty sick, tell that to Gary Eastburn and am sure that's not an option, it was 1985 and his wife was NOT EXACTLY the sleazy type....

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    2. The wife did not have to be "sleazy" to have done something like that.....not saying she did by any means...but even officer' wives cheat after many lonely nights...and that's not right either, but statistics on military marriages bears this out.

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  26. I think that those law enforcement people hated the fact that they were wrong. They could have easily taken Hennis' blood and contaminated the vaginal swab. How could a person kill 3 people..very bloodily, very messily and leave nothing of themselves at the scene but their semen? I'm not sure he actually even had sex..maybe his attorneys just made him say he did, since they thought they couldn't refute DNA..? I read the great book by Whisnant (?) years ago..and was torn wondering if he did commit the murders. Figured if he did, it wouldn't be an isolated incident and he would be in other trouble, or his wife would leave him, or he would run his mouth, etc. Nothing ever occurred though.This is one reason I am so anti death penalty. Prosecutors and law enforcement are sometimes crooks with badges and their jobs depend on CONVICTIONS..innocent or guilty makes no difference to some.

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  27. some people are truly stupid. The DNA match meant no one else in the world-but Tim Hennis could have had sex with Katie. Why didn't he tell the police in the first investigation he had sex with her? --because they didn't have DNA back then. The Chevette also was fingered by an eyewitness. How in the world with thousands of different cars did he say the man was driving a white Chevette? I only hope Hennis admits to his guilt so he can possibly save his soul from Hades.

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  28. If you go and do your research you will see that he back a sle sample back in 1985!! So it's possible that the crime lab did mix up samples!!

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  29. This is a travesty of justice. Firstly all the evidence should have been tested. My concern here is that previous samples from the laboratory were contaminated what is to say that the one used wasn't. From what I could see the Prosecution were determined that he was guilty and were happy to use any dirty trick they could including hiding evidence to make sure this man was convicted. It appears to me that this was a matter of we must be seen to be doing something and we don't care if he is guilty or not the Army is going to be seen to be doing the right thing. As a Criminologist I have grave concerns that this case was ever handled properly.

    He couldn't have been at the ATM when it was said he was. The evidence to prove his innocents was collected and hidden by the Prosecutor. There was no bloody on his jacket but that was ignored. The man seen was actually not Hennis but someone else and again that was ignored. If this is the way they handle cases in America I can only say that the system says 'You are guilty until proven innocent and that won't happen when the Army and the Prosecutor are looking for a sacrificial Lamb.

    My heart breaks for not only the husband and father of the three killed but the wife and children of Hennis. Two families lives were ruined in the pursuit of lazy investigators, doggie prosecutors and an Army looking for someone to take the blame for what happen because the husband and father was away from home doing his duty.

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    1. I agree with you. There is no way I could convict Hennis when all evidence was not tested.

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  30. Guilty his DNA put him there he is where he belongs

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  31. U all are funny. So the police got a semen sample from Hennis and that's how it ended up on the swab? When did the police start getting semen samples for cases? GTFOH! if it was consensual he would've brought it up then not 20 years later.

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    1. exactly! He conveniently left that part out in 1985 and '86.... Hmmm?

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  32. I have always wondered why they never questioned John thoroughly. i grew up next to John on Summer Hill Rd. until I went to live with my father at 13-14 years old. I knew John very well and was for a long time one of his better friends. He had a terrible childhood. I witnessed his mother beat him with a horse crop until he had sores on his back. Mrs. Raupach was a strange bird. She was A German wife of a soldier who abandoned them. They were very poor. I can remember John being made fun of because he smelled so bad. They were not allowed to bathe but maybe once a week or flush the toilets until they were full of feces and waste. He had a really messed up childhood. He did drive an old faded yellow AMC Gremlin that was his mother's car and if you compare the Gremlin to a Chevette of the same time period, they could be confused for each other if asked to identify the car by memory. The faded yellow paint and white paint look similar under a street light. He was a big dude too. At least. 6'3" with blonde hair and a mustache He always walked the streets at night. I can remember walking at night with him. The Raupach's epitomized the dysfunctional family. One of his sisters is pretty messed up too. I remember a chicken and a pet skunk roaming freely around their house. Yes, the guy had big knives and other weird stuff around the house. I've always been puzzled with the accusation of rape. I'm sure it happens but if he was raping her, how could Mr. Hennis calmly put on a condom and then be so careless as to hide it under a piece of furniture. Why be careful to avoid pregnancy but be careless and leave it behind. I have always though and will always think John Raupach should have been more thoroughly investigated or more than what the media has reported.

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    1. John was eliminated as a suspect after DNA testing from what I understand. Did you happen to know William Hill or his roommate by chance?

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  33. what a bunch of idiots. none of you know anymore than whats given to you.

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  34. He's guilty, and anyone that doesn't see that is naive and stupid! Kill him! I hope people rape and torture him everyday in prison! Every breath he takes is air he doesn't deserve! Sucks f@ck! And as far as the dumbass writer saying that 'he can't kill then be such a good man and serve the country'... Not everyone continues to kill or the world would have only serial killers! This story is filled with a lot of stupid people... Every person that thinks he's innocent!
    And remember, it's a sperm sample, the reason they couldn't test before is there was no way to test it... it's not a dna sample but a sperm sample people! Also, there was plenty of evidence the first trial, remember the 2 eye witnesses... one outside the house with the composite sketch and someone identified him at the atm using her bank card!

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    1. He had dozens of opportunities at the time to mention that consentual sex occurred - like this would not have been important for the police, DA's office and his defense team to know when one is fighting for their life?? Come on folks - this omission alone on Hennis'part shouts his guilt. How convenient to come up with this story after his DNA is linked. And come on - planting semen???!!!

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  35. He's guilty. Period.

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  36. ? Atm picture of person using victims
    card

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  37. What about picture of person using victims atm card?

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    1. I don't think ARMs or much of anything had cameras back then. One thought...how in the world could anyone his size fit in a Chevette? Maybe the other one with a Gremlin..bigger by a bit.

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  38. Maybe another guy was involved at the crime scene...at a different time from Ennis' involvement.
    It's possible the victim DID have consensual sex with someone BEFORE Ennis came along....that would explain the mysterious pubic and head hairs...and maybe even the fingernail DNA from the victims.
    Other than that, I believe Ennis is guilty as hell.

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    1. probably not. She was a faithful wife and what a sick thing to say! Fatass Alex Jones much? Seem like a conspiracy nut like that fat retard and am sure that loser would come up with something like that....

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    2. So there is evidence - sexual evidence - of two people at the crime scene: one guilty, the other presumed innocent. We know that one of them is Tim Hennis, we don’t know who the other one is. And we don’t know which one is which. Apparently most people think Hennis is the guilty one. He has been thoroughly investigated, so we know what other evidence there is against him, but that evidence has been challenged. As the other person is unknown, we don’t know what other evidence there might be against him. Apparently, the police haven’t even tried to identify him (the owner of that DNA). There might be stronger circumstantial evidence against him than there is against Hennis.

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  39. I respect the views of all these posts, but Tim Hennis is a stone-cold, sociopath who wouldn't know the truth if it bit him in the face!! Look up The roger coleman case of grundy, Va. Coleman was executed in 1992 for the rape and murder of his sister-in-law wanda McCoy. 2006 dna tests confirmed Colemans guilt and his lying, cunning abilities as a sociopath!!!

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  40. I served with him after the first trial. This man practically stalked me. The only thing he didn't do was follow me home. He was like a dad that caught me doing everything wrong. I strongly disliked him and his dwarf sized wife. He is a guilty as they come.

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  41. Omg..there are sooo many idiots in our world. .why would you wish death upon someone you know nothing about? I just watched this on HLN..the entire trial was a mess!!, it's to unclear.. Too many loose ends..He should be free..

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    1. Why should he be free when not one but two DNA tests proved he did it? He is where he deserves to be.

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  42. The troubling things about this case fall into the scientific evidence category. Who did the male hair belong to? Who did the samples beneath the mother's fingernails, and apparently one of the children as well, belong to? None of that was matched to this soldier, and apparently the prosecution was uninterested in following up on that additional, and compelling, evidence. The DNA evidence is troubling, not only because it was a match, but because it's identification has some questions concerning it's validity. This was a horrible crime, but without the DNA match to the soldier, it's an extremely circumstantial case. I'm all for the death penalty, and this case warrents it, but it also warrents making sure the right person pays for the crime. I fail to understand why the other evidence hasn't been more fully explored.

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    1. You'd think that in the interest of justice they'd test EVERYTHING so that they can be sure. I am inclined after seeing/hearing of this case to believe he is likely innocent and I would not doubt the prosecution isn't above dirty tricks to have the DNA contaminated. It's not that hard. All they have to do is lie about the "chain of evidence." That military judge should have had the DNA on pubic hair and hair, and the DNA under the woman's and her daughter's fingernails tested. That way, they could be SURE.

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  43. For the people saying he is innocent....the DNA was tested at not one but two labs, once of which was the military. BOTH DNA tests came back as a match to Hennis. That sick SOB did it!! He is right where he belongs. I hope his appeals are completed soon so he can meet his maker.

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  44. I'm so amazed that no one has mentioned Jeffrey McDonald, who is in jail for raping and murdering his wife and child at about the same time, who was also at Fort Bragg! Katie Eastburn's babysitter was in love with him and calling him all the time, from the Eastburn household. There were also phone calls, threatening the family for weeks. Adultery in the military, is a real problem with the long tour of duties and absences, as is PTSD. ~ Folks, the answer to this mystery is very complicated and with all the botched DNA & lab problems in so many other death row cases on 'Death Row Stories' that this case was featured on, this is not an open & shut case! Also, hairs from the blonde wig, found on the scene, belonged to a thrill-killer who confessed to the Eastburn murders before her death in the 1985. This case is very twisted and complicated and the military doesn't have the imagination or inclination to really investigate it. In time, maybe the babysitter will talk. (Maybe she and Jeffrey did it. He also killed his pregnant wife, assassin-style.) These two cases are definitely linked, I feel. google Jeffrey McDonald Story - Fort Bragg

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    1. interesting...I hadn't realized that. You might have something there!

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