Day of Remembrance 2018

In memory of the Texas women and men killed by their intimate partners in 2017

Ellis County

Josie Blackburn, 57
Waxahachie | September 5, 2017
Michael Blackburn, 62, stabbed and killed his wife Josie in the front yard of their home. He then shot and killed himself. Law enforcement located Josie, who told officers Blackburn had stabbed her. Blackburn remained inside the home and after several hours of no activity, the SWAT team forced entry and found Blackburn deceased. Emergency responders transported Josie to the hospital where she later died. Josie is survived by her three adult daughters and adult son.

Tia Marie Spearman, 21
Alma | July 15, 2017
Guy Lynch, 47, killed his girlfriend Tia and moved her body to a field in Ellis County. Tia’s family reported her missing after not hearing from her since May 2017 and contacted police in Biloxi, Mississippi because they believed she had visited there. Law enforcement in Mississippi contacted the police department in Lancaster, Texas after finding an address for Tia there; after receiving the tip from Lancaster Police Department, Ellis County law enforcement confirmed the remains were a match to Tia. Authorities arrested and charged Lynch with murder.

Hill County

Debra Murdock Ballard, 58
Hillsboro | February 1, 2017
Michael Hodge, 60, beat and killed his girlfriend Debra and left her body in a field. Debra was reported missing. A rancher discovered Debra’s body. Authorities listed Hodge as a person of interest and issued a warrant for his arrest. U.S. Marshals located Hodge and pulled him over. Hodge then exited the vehicle and shot himself. He died from his injuries the following day.

McLennan County

Monica Tharpe, 31
Bruceville-Eddy | May 20, 2017
Kevin Tharpe, 40, shot and killed his wife Monica in her friend’s home. There were several witnesses present in the home at the time of the murder, including one of the couple’s young daughters. Witnesses called 911. After a standoff and the arrival of the SWAT team, Tharpe killed himself. Monica had recently moved out of the house, separated from Tharpe, and planned to file for divorce. Two days prior to the murder, Tharpe had been arrested for harassment and criminal mischief involving Monica as the victim. He was out on bond for those charges at the time of the murder. Monica is survived by her two daughters, ages 3 and 7.

Valeria Martinez, 24
Waco | November 5, 2017
Christopher Weiss, 26, shot and killed his ex-girlfriend Valerie in her car. Weiss also shot and killed their daughter Azariah, age 1. Authorities arrested Weiss and charged him with two counts of capital murder.

Twila Gail Saulter Mooney, 48
Waco | July 20, 2017
William Mooney, 47, shot and killed his wife Twila inside their home. He then shot and killed himself. A coworker was concerned that Twila had now shown up to work and went to the home and discovered their bodies. Twila is survived by her three adult children.

Navarro County

Penny Stovall, 43
Mildred | February 9, 2017
Jefferson Stovall, 46, shot and killed his wife Penny inside their home. Stovall also shot and killed their daughter, Makenzie, age 8, and then shot and killed himself. A family member requested a welfare check after she stated she had not spoken with the family within the past 24 hours. When officers arrived, they observed a body on the ground through a window and entered the home, they then discovered all three bodies.


Read the full 2017 report here: Full 2017 TCFV Report