BLOG: Defense questions suspect Rhonda Carlson, first wife of capital murder suspect Christopher Henderson


HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – A capital murder trial continued for the third day of testimony on Monday.

Christopher Henderson is accused of killed five people, including two children and a pregnant woman, at a New Market home before setting it on fire in 2015.

Victim Kristen Smallwood was 9 months pregnant with Henderson’s child at the time of the killings. Her unborn daughter, her mother Jean Smallwood, her 8-year-old son, Clayton Chambers, her 1-year-old nephew Eli Sokolowski, were also killed that day.  

Last week, during the first two days of testimony, extremely disturbing autopsy photos were presented along with extensive details about those crimes.

The prosecution continued questioning Christopher Henderson’s first wife and alleged accomplice, Rhonda Carlson, Monday morning. Carlson is also facing capital murder charges that are still moving through the court system.

Defense attorney Bruce Gardner has argued Rhonda Carlson, Henderson’s first wife – who he never divorced before marrying Kristen Smallwood – was to blame for the killings. Gardner questioned Carlson about divorce proceedings that were never completed and if she knew about Henderson’s marriage to Smallwood. Carlson said she learned of the marriage in 2015.

Gardner asked Carlson, “Do you agree that the truth does not come easy for you in this case,” and stated, “You’ve lied and lied all about your involvement in this case.” Carlson answered both with “Yes.”

WARNING: The link below includes graphic details.

After the video of Carlson’s interview with an investigator was played for the court, Gardner accused Carlson of smiling several times while “they were talking about five people being dead and you’re smiling.”

The defense made accusations that Carlson wanted Smallwood’s child and hated the fact that she was pregnant with Henderson’s baby. Gardner said Carlson wanted revenge and had every motive in the world to kill her. Carlson said, “Yes sir.” to every statement Gardener made.

The prosecution called also called forensic scientist to the stand and a retired investigator for the Madison County Sheriff’s Office, Eugene Nash. Nash was the lead investigator at the scene on the day of the murders.

The prosecution rested their case on Monday. The defense will begin to present its case on Tuesday.

We follwoed the case in the blog below.

If you’re on our app, tap here to access the blog.

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