Texarkana, TX 77° View Live Radar Sun H 81° L 65° Mon H 84° L 65° Tue H 83° L 65° Weather Sponsored By:

Autopsy shows woman stabbed several times

Autopsy shows woman stabbed several times

Nashville woman was killed last week by her boyfriend, who then hanged himself

May 19th, 2017 by Jim Williamson in Texarkana News

Nashville, Ark., police officers secure the scene of what is believed to be a murder-suicide Friday morning in Nashville.

Photo by Evan Lewis /Texarkana Gazette.

EDITOR'S NOTE: This story contains some disturbing details.


The Arkansas Crime Lab ruled Gracie Haddox, 43, of Nashville, Ark., died from "sharp force trauma" by being stabbed to death, according to Howard County Sheriff Bryan McJunkins.

She was stabbed "several times" by a kitchen knife by Gerald Martin, 47, who later hanged himself in a closet in the house at 310 Meadow Lane in Nashville.

McJunkins is calling the deaths murder-suicide.

Based on evidence from a cellphone at the scene, Prosecutor Bryan Chesshir said it was estimated Haddox's time of death was about 9:30 a.m. May 10.

Martin's death by hanging from a rope was briefly after 4 a.m. May 11.

Martin's purchase of a package of knives from Walmart earlier in the morning was documented with surveillance cameras at Walmart, said Chesshir.

He removed one knife from the package and the other knives were found in the back seat of a car parked at the house.

"The knife was at least 6 inches. It was found next to her body," Chesshir said. "We don't know why he bought the knives, but he did."

Martin reportedly texted Haddox's cellphone and left a message she had died about 9:40 a.m. The cellphone was found next to her body.

Martin texted his cellphone and the message was sent at 4:04 a.m.

"The texts were like handwritten notes. He (Martin) texted her phone after she was killed, and he texted his phone about himself," Chesshir said. "It was macabre."

The bodies of Haddox and Martin were discovered by Haddox's 16-year-old child after opening a bedroom door early May 12, McJunkins said. The first call about the deaths came in about 7:35 a.m. May 12.

The motive for the deaths were arguments concerning his previous girlfriends, Chesshir said.

"Some friend sent a photo of his past girlfriend, and it escalated over several days. She (Haddox) had taken the children to look at other places to live," he said.

Haddox shared the house with three of her children, one of her grandchildren and Martin.

Haddox is the mother of seven children.

One of the children, age, 17, was scheduled to graduate last Friday night from an area high school.

Martin, who is originally from Mineral Springs, Ark., had lived with Haddox for about two years.

Chesshir said this is a situation of a man on parole for murder, killing the mother of seven children.

In 1991, Martin was arrested for killing a woman in Texas. He was convicted and sentenced to life in prison in 1993 and placed on parole in 2013, Chesshir said.

"He (Martin) was on parole for life out of Texas, and the parole was transferred to Arkansas when he moved back," Chesshir said.

"There is something wrong with the system when someone is sentenced to life for murder and is let out early," he said.

Getting Started/Comments Policy

Getting started

  1. 1. If you frequently comment on news websites then you may already have a Disqus account. If so, click the "Login" button at the top right of the comment widget and choose whether you'd rather log in with Facebook, Twitter, Google, or a Disqus account.
  2. 2. If you've forgotten your password, Disqus will email you a link that will allow you to create a new one. Easy!
  3. 3. If you're not a member yet, Disqus will go ahead and register you. It's seamless and takes about 10 seconds.
  4. 4. To register, either go through the login process or just click in the box that says "join the discussion," type your comment, and either choose a social media platform to log you in or create a Disqus account with your email address.
  5. 5. If you use Twitter, Facebook or Google to log in, you will need to stay logged into that platform in order to comment. If you create a Disqus account instead, you'll need to remember your Disqus password. Either way, you can change your display name if you'd rather not show off your real name.
  6. 6. Don't be a huge jerk or do anything illegal, and you'll be fine.

Texarkana Gazette Comments Policy

The Texarkana Gazette web sites include interactive areas in which users can express opinions and share ideas and information. We cannot and do not monitor all of the material submitted to the website. Additionally, we do not control, and are not responsible for, content submitted by users. By using the web sites, you may be exposed to content that you may find offensive, indecent, inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise objectionable. You agree that you must evaluate, and bear all risks associated with, the use of the Gazette web sites and any content on the Gazette web sites, including, but not limited to, whether you should rely on such content. Notwithstanding the foregoing, you acknowledge that we shall have the right (but not the obligation) to review any content that you have submitted to the Gazette, and to reject, delete, disable, or remove any content that we determine, in our sole discretion, (a) does not comply with the terms and conditions of this agreement; (b) might violate any law, infringe upon the rights of third parties, or subject us to liability for any reason; or (c) might adversely affect our public image, reputation or goodwill. Moreover, we reserve the right to reject, delete, disable, or remove any content at any time, for the reasons set forth above, for any other reason, or for no reason. If you believe that any content on any of the Gazette web sites infringes upon any copyrights that you own, please contact us pursuant to the procedures outlined in the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (Title 17 U.S.C. § 512) at the following address:

Copyright Agent
The Texarkana Gazette
15 Pine Street
Texarkana, TX 75501
Phone: 903-794-3311
Email: webeditor@texarkanagazette.com