State of Missouri v. Charles Mathenia

702 S.W.2d 840 (Mo.banc 1986)

MatheniaCCase Facts:  Decedents were Daisy Nash, 72, and her mentally impaired sister Louanna Bailey, 70. Mathenia had lived with Nash for some seven years prior to her death. At the time of the killings, Mathenia was 25 years old and still living with Nash.

In September of 1983, Mathenia allegedly twice raped Louanna Bailey and in December of the year he was charged for those offenses upon her complaint. In February, Bailey dropped the charges, indicating she would refuse to testify against Mathenia. The evidence indicated that the murders were motivated by Mathenia’s resentment at having been arrested and confined in connection with these charges. Mathenia vowed to take revenge on the two sisters.

Sometime after midnight on April 24, 1984, Mathenia returned home after spending the day with his sister and brother-in -law. An argument began with Nash as soon as he entered the house. During the course of the argument, Mathenia hit the 72 year old woman in the face, knocking her to the floor. He then retrieved a butcher knife from the kitchen and after kicking and beating her, he stabbed her several times.

Shortly thereafter, Mathenia rode his bicycle the two blocks to Bailey’s home and told her he had killed Nash. While Bailey tried to call Nash, Mathenia got a butcher knife. When he returned, Bailey attempted to flee but Mathenia stabbed her fatally in the back. Mathenia was arrested the following day. He was convicted by a jury of two counts of capital murder and sentenced to death in the Circuit Court of Jefferson County.