Tuesday, March 17, 2009
Douglas County Man Allegedly Kills Pregnant Wife And Infant Son:
A Douglas County man has been charged with the slashing deaths of his wife and 9 month-old- baby boy.
Family members say that they were so concerned about Dan Allen Andrews (l.) mental health, and what he might do to his family, that they took him to a West Plains hospital a month ago because they feared he might kill someone.
On Monday (03-16-09), he allegedly did.
Dan Andrews father, Starlin Andrews, said he knew something bad had happened at his son's house when he got a phone call about 1:30 a.m. at his Jefferson City home.
Dan Andrews, 30, made knifes and swords to make ends meet......it is believed that a pocket knife and one of the double edged swords he made ended the life of his wife and baby boy.
Andrews was charged in a Douglas County Court on Monday with two counts of first-degree murder and two counts of armed criminal action for allegedly stabbing to death his wife, 24-year-old Mary Burchell , and 9-month old son, Taylor Andrews.
The couple had dated since they were teenagers and have been married for several years, Starlin Andrews said.
Investigators discovered a pregnant Burchell lying on the couples bed with extensive injuries to the left side of her face. She also had suffered repeated stab wounds to her body, her intestines protruding from her stomach, according to a probable cause statement filed with the case.
If that scene wasn't horrifying enough, deputies then spotted a crib in the bedroom.....and when they pulled back a blood-soaked baby blanket they found little Taylor lying in a pool of blood with multiple stab wounds to his tiny body.
Dispatchers received a call from Dave Fleetwood, who had been living with Dan Andrews and his family about 1:40 a. m.(03-16-09), and when Sheriff Chris Degase arrived at the small house about 5 miles from Ava he encountered Dan Andrews standing in the driveway.
Degase said that Andrews had blood on his hands and that his right hand was wrapped, but still oozing blood. Andrews attempted to flee, but was caught in a matter of minutes.
When Degase asked Dan Andrews’ what he would find in the house, he allegedly told the law enforcer: “I killed her.....and I killed my son, too.” Since he lawyered up, Andrews has refused to give authorities any further details, including a reason for the murders.
Preliminary autopsy results confirmed both died of multiple stab wounds, the sheriff said.
A pocket knife and a 36-inch double-edged sword were recovered from the scene, both with blood on them, the probable cause statement said.
The statement goes on to say: "There was significant blood splatter on the walls and ceiling."
Just last month cops confiscated a cache of swords from Dan Andrews following the family's request to have the man committed for inpatient mental health treatment.
“My son needed help — serious medical and mental help,” Starlin Andrews said.
Starlin Andrews said his son's bizarre behavior began after he suffered head injuries from a car crash years ago....and he believes brain damage from the accident may be the reason behind his son's paranoia, delusions and schizophrenic behavior.
Dan Andrews said he heard voices in his head and talked about outer space aliens.
He also claimed his infant son was the second coming of Christ and he was the anti-Christ.
Starlin Andrews said his son voluntarily committed himself to the Mid Missouri Mental Health Center in Jefferson City two years ago.
The sheriff said Dan Andrews will undergo a mental health exam, but was cognoscente of the crime he allegedly committed.
Although Monday’s incident didn’t come as a complete surprise to Dan Andrews’ family, they place some of the blame for the tragedy on the mental health system that they tried repeatedly to get help for their son.
They say that they would keep Dan Andrews inpatient at a hospital for a few days, then release him.
Taylor Andrews’ grandparents are heartbroken. “We took care of him over 80 percent of the time,” said Andrews step-father, Landon Fleetwood, who lived next door to his stepson....“I loved him like he was my own.”
Dan A. Andrews is scheduled to be arraigned before Circuit Judge Craig Carter at 9 a.m. March 26