The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Local News

June 28, 2012

Murder suspect’s girlfriend charged

— A Pocahontas County woman was arrested Monday and charged with four felony counts of accessory after the fact in connection with a quadruple homicide committed in Nicholas County in May, according to West Virginia State Police.

Carrie Nelson, 31, was remanded to Southern Regional Jail Tuesday on a $300,000 bond, said Cpl. J.K. Cooper of the Rainelle State Police detachment.

Nelson is the girlfriend of James Roy Belknap, 26, of Leivasy, the man believed to be responsible for the killings of Steven Hendrix, his girlfriend, Amber Martin and his two children, 6-year-old Dakota and 4-year-old Kaylee Hendrix. Police believe the murders took place after an argument over a drug debt.

State Police began looking for the four May 21 after receiving a missing person’s report from Hendrix’s daughter, Cheyenne, stating they had last been seen May 19 in the Crichton area, police explained.

Hendrix’s minivan was found on May 25 near White Buck Knob Road in Leivasy by the Nicholas County Sheriff’s Department, not far from Belknap’s home.

A subsequent search of his property turned up evidence that Hendrix had been on the property with Martin and the children; troopers also found evidence the four had been killed, stripped naked, and dumped over the side of a mountain.  

Police believe Hendrix went to Belknap’s home to collect a debt and that Belknap intentionally shot and killed the two adults and two children.

Belknap is being held at Central Regional Jail in Flatwoods without bond on four counts of first degree murder, Cooper said, and is expected to appear in Greenbrier County Circuit Court July 10 after waiving his preliminary hearing.

Wanda Einstein, 48, of Summersville, was also charged with four counts of accessory after the fact on Sunday and is also being held at CRJ as a pre-trial felon on $300,000 bond, Cooper added.

Both arrests were made without incident, police explained.

Einstein allegedly knew  Belknap was wanted in connection with the slayings when she drove him to his home from another residence on May 26, police said.

Mark Haynes, 54, of Leivasy, has also been charged with helping Belknap, police added. He was arrested for obstruction and accessory after the fact, but has since been released on bond.

Trooper First Class M.A. Agee of the Marlinton detachment, said additional arrests are anticipated.

— E-mail: Kvanpelt@register-herald.com

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