CHEYENNE – A Cheyenne man has been charged with first-degree murder in connection with the death of his 80-year-old mother.
If convicted, James Wallace, 48, faces a maximum penalty of life in prison or the death penalty. His mother, Carol Wallace, was found dead last week in the home the two shared.
According to court documents:
Laramie County Sheriff's deputies were dispatched to the 1100 block of Green Mountain Road, northwest of Cheyenne, for a possible weapons assault at 7:30 a.m. May 10.
Glenn Wallace called to report his brother, James Wallace, was “high on meth and freaking out, said he hit his mother with a hammer.” Glenn Wallace said his mother was beyond any help, and dispatchers heard James Wallace shouting that his brother was lying, adding “I didn’t kill my mom, I killed a dummy.”
Glenn Wallace said he was at the home to pick Carol Wallace up for a day of garage sale shopping. He told dispatchers James Wallace had a methamphetamine problem.
When deputies arrived on scene, they discovered Carol Wallace’s body in the basement on the east side of the home. The woman was lying face down, and deputies noticed what appeared to be blood drops on the stairs from the basement to the first floor.
After a search warrant was issued, detectives found multiple bloody drag marks leading to the body, and began moving items in an effort to search for more evidence. They located a larger pool of blood and other blood droplets throughout the basement, much of which was hidden by boxes and other items in an apparent attempt to conceal evidence.
Several small-caliber guns were found at the home, two of which had ammunition, according to court records. A large hammer found outside the room where Carol Wallace’s body was found appeared to have blood and hair on it, as did a knife found in the vicinity.
An automobile body hammer wrapped in a towel also appeared to be concealed intentionally.
After being taken into custody, detectives reported James Wallace was mumbling to himself in the interview room, talking about “robots and other things.” During his mumbling, he said “what was I do...thinking? Yo mom, boom,” and began to cry.
James Wallace told detectives he didn’t kill his mother, but later pointed to himself and said, “I’m the one who killed the mother.”
During a May 11 autopsy, pathologists said Carol Wallace suffered blunt force trauma to the head and chest, a gunshot wound to the head and a cutting wound on the chest. Pathologists also identified what they believed to be several defensible wounds on one of Carol Wallace's hands caused by a sharp object.
The Wyoming State Crime Lab's blood pattern analysis results are still pending.
James Wallace had previously been arrested for domestic violence against Carol Wallace. He was released on bond March 25 in that case, and failed to appear for his May 6 court date.
He’s currently being held in the Laramie County jail. His initial appearance in Laramie County Circuit Court is scheduled for Thursday.