The Difference Between A and THE looks at additional accusations against Charles Wakefield Jr., including one crime he admits committing. For more, read the show notes or listen to the episode above.
Jim Christopher’s notebook
The police file on the Looper murders contains the names of more than 30 suspects in the case. In the middle of hundreds of pages of files, Jim Christopher made notes on some of the street information on Charles Wakefield Jr. Below is some of the information that led Christopher to pursue Wakefield.
Feb. 2: Jim Christopher wrote he had Wakefield in a cell with Tommy Shaw and that while Wakefield was inside, some guy managed to slip in through the side door. Shaw told Christopher Wakefield said, “Blood” and put his fingers to his lips. Shaw told Christopher that Wakefield said, “Go to Frank Street and tell Cruel to take care of things.” Another Christopher informer told him there were only two “Bloods” on the streets — Raymond “Blood” Young and William “Blood” Keith.
Feb. 3: Christopher picked up Dexter Cruel (Wakefield’s cousin) and Cruel confirmed Wakefield was at his house at 2:20 p.m. when he arrived. Cruel would later say he heard a man named Truman Murray had done the killings, but no one had ever heard of Truman Murray; an informer called Christopher and said a man that worked third shift at the Dunean Mill looked like the composite; another informer called and said Terry Edens and Pop Arnold would make good suspects.
Feb. 4: Lt. Jim Christopher (in a report dated two days later) said he had gone to Aladdin Manor apartments and talked to a liquor house owner from 108 Pack St., Ulysses Jones. Jones allegedly told Christopher that Charles Wakefield and his cousin Dexter Cruel had tried to sell him a stolen television. Jones also went on to describe Dexter’s mother, Inez, and sister Rebecca, who Jones said had killed her stepfather (there is no follow-up or explanation for this allegation). Nevertheless, Jones denied seeing Wakefield on the day of the murders.
Christopher made another report on that say, writing that Cruel called him again and gave him two more names: Marty Dacus and Ronnie McIntosh. Christopher decided Cruel was “trying to throw me off.”
On that same day, Christopher said Wakefield showed up at police headquarters and said he’d been out looking for whoever had done the killings and that he heard Larry Poole was in New York. Christopher wrote “I had to release him on 02-04-75 on own recog. On assault…” He also wrote, “Wakefield wanted to know how much had been found out about the one who did the killings.” Charles Wakefield denies he visited Christopher on this occasion.
Christopher also ran a tag check on a car that came back to Thomas G. Williams of 7 Norwood St. and indicated on the report that was where Charles Wakefield lived.
It’s clear from Christopher’s reports that he is 100% focused on Wakefield on Feb. 4. He enters into the file a “Consent to Search” waiver Mary Wakefield signed on Jan. 31, 1975, with Willie Johnson and Louis M. Clinkscales at 1 Kingston Court Apartments. They were searching for a gun and clothes. He also submitted the arrest warrant for the assault and battery from Jan. 3, 1975, involving the fight Wakefield and Cruel had gotten into with Furman Wakefield.
Feb. 6: Christopher makes first note of Wyatt Earp Harper, saying an unnamed informer told him Harper had been stealing with Wakefield and that Harper was the robber.
Feb. 7: Detective Charles Edens showed up at the Sheriff’s Office and said that a subject named Ed (last name is either redacted or not known) who worked with Wakefield had information he wanted to turn over but “he was in fear of what Chas. Wakefield would possibly do to him if he ever found out that he had talked to officers.” Edens told the confidential informant to pass on to his source that officers would meet with the subject at a time and place where Wakefield would never know. There is nothing in the police file to indicate this meeting actually took place.
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The Difference between A and THE takes a deep dive into accusations Charles Wakefield Jr. faced in the years before and after the Looper murders.
Beginning with Wakefield’s teenage years, the episode tracks Wakefield’s run-ins with the police leading up to the murders.
The episode primarily focuses on a crime Wakefield committed after the murders, one to which he pleaded guilty and went to prison prior to the grand jury indictment that ultimately led to his trial, conviction, and death sentence for the Looper murders.