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Brutal double homicide

A mother and her daughter are dead at the alleged hand of the daughter’s boyfriend, Joe Whittenburg, 43, reports Bledsoe County Sheriff Jimmy Morris.

Deanna Lawrence, 47 and Dedra Lawrence, 24, were found lying in the floor of their home at 64 Sawmill Road in Pikeville, he said. They shared the home with Dedra’s boyfriend, Whittenburg, the sheriff noted.

Deputies George Hodge and Ricky Hodge arrived at the scene at 7:15 p.m. Thursday evening and found the women lying in the floor in a pool of blood. Whittenburg was lying on a bed in a bedroom at the home, trying to overdose, explained Sheriff Morris. He was transported to Erlanger Medical Center where he is listed in stable condition, said the sheriff, with officers stationed with him at the facility.

“It was the worst murder scene I have ever seen, and as far as we know, the worst ever in Bledsoe County,” said Sheriff Morris. At this time the type of weapon used is not being released by authorities.

As the night’s events unfolded, and Tennessee Bureau of Investigation agents joined the investigation, Sheriff Morris said it was determined Whittenburg had brutally killed the two women.

Whittenburg has been charged with two counts of criminal homicide. Once released from the hospital, Whittenburg will be held at the Bledsoe County Detention Center.

Four TBI agents, the Bledsoe County Sheriff’s Department and Pikeville Police Department are investigating the double homicide.

More details will be released in the December 7 issue of The Bledsonian-Banner.


Correction: an earlier version of the story stated Whittenburg worked for Puckett EMS. Puckett EMS stated Whittenburg had not worked for their company since 2014. 

1 Comment

  1. Sandra Morgan on December 5, 2017 at 4:19 pm

    My mind can’t comprehend how someone could do.this .

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