Police records show the deaf man charged with stabbing his estranged wife to death and critically wounding her boyfriend at the woman’s Willis residence Saturday morning had a history of violence.
Earl Handy, Jr., 38, of Conroe is charged with Capital Murder and Aggravated Assault in the death of 35-year-old Donna Rene Allen Handy and the serious injury by stabbing of Joseph Taylor of Conroe (age unknown).
February 4 would have been Earl and Donna Handy’s third wedding anniversary.
Earl Handy had at least three convictions for Assault Causes Bodily Injury prior to their 2007 wedding, based on readily available public information.
Handy’s first arrest for Assault Causes Bodily Injury occurred on June 14, 2001. The second charge, which specified “Family Member” occurred on April 17, 2003 in conjunction with a Criminal Mischief charge for damage to property valued at $500 to $1,500. Those charges resulted in suspended sentences, fines and probation.
Handy’s third Assault Causes Bodily injury charge also specified “Family Member” and occurred on Oct. 1, 2006, just four months and three days before his marriage to Donna Allen. Information accessible online does not indicate whether she was the victim of that assault. Handy pleaded guilty to the charge three days later and was sentenced to 90 days in jail.
He also has a prior conviction for resisting arrest and another for Driving While Intoxicated.
Earl and Donna Handy were recently separated, according to police.
Click the arrow to view on-scene video.
Saturday’s brutal attacks occurred around 8 a.m. when police say Earl Handy gained the element of surprise by parking in the driveway of a vacant mobile home on Cedar Court, and walking two blocks to his wife’s residence in the 13000 block of Aspen Way in the Pin Oak Subdivision west of I-45.
Investigators believe Handy lay in wait near the back door of the mobile home, where he first encountered Taylor and stabbed him multiple times in the chest with a kitchen type knife. Handy then headed inside to deal with his wife, who he also stabbed in the chest. Her 17-year-old son was home at the time of the stabbing but was not harmed.
There is conflicting information as to who reported the crime. Dispatchers were overheard telling officers the teen said Handy stabbed his mother and her boyfriend. However, on Saturday afternoon, police said a neighbor called 911 after hearing sounds of a struggle then seeing Taylor in her yard wearing a blood soaked shirt.
Handy was hiding inside the mobile home, but without his SUV in sight, witnesses initially thought he fled and a description of the truck was broadcast to area law enforcement.
Patrol units from the Willis Police Department and the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office were dispatched along with EMS, but it was Willis Police Officer Brian Skeiro who first arrived and found Earl Handy.
Once discovered, Handy began stabbing himself with a screwdriver, ignoring the officer’s commands. Skeiro deployed his Taser device and was able to subdue Handy and take him into custody.
Medics arrived on-scene to find Donna Handy in traumatic arrest and Taylor critically injured.
Donna Handy was transported to Conroe Regional Medical Center with CPR in progress. She was pronounced dead on arrival. Taylor was transported to Ben Taub Hospital in Houston where his condition was upgraded to “stable.”
Medics transported Earl Handy to Memorial Hermann Hospital in The Woodlands with an MCSO deputy in the ambulance. Handy was treated and released to the deputy, who returned him to Conroe for questioning. Because he is deaf, police had to use the Language Line service to locate someone who could assist their investigation and communication through sign language.
Willis Detective Sgt. Alton L. Nelson spent all day on the scene, along with Montgomery County District Attorney Bret Ligon. They were assisted by Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene investigators, Criminal Investigations Division and additional patrol units.
The investigation is continuing and additional information will be posted as it becomes available