crimesider

James Herring, Ark. newlywed, charged with killing his pregnant wife a week after their wedding

CBS/WREG

Arkansas woman, unborn child murdered by husband, say police
James Herring and Celestia Duffin
CBS/WREG

(CBS/WREG/AP) LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - Newlywed James Herring was charged with murder Wednesday after his pregnant wife  staggered into a western Arkansas police station. Her blouse covered in blood from the stab wound in her chest.

According to CBS affiliate WREG, police say emergency responders rushed the nearly seven months pregnant Celestia Duffin, 32,  to a local hospital where doctors delivered her baby. Both she and her son died.

Duffin reportedly ran to the police station from the scene of a nearby traffic accident on where officers later found her husband,  Herring. The couple married a week ago Wednesday, according to court records, but Herring told investigators they were already talking about divorce, Fort Smith police spokesman Sgt. Daniel Grubbs said.

Authorities believe that Duffin was driving with her husband when he stabbed her and caused her to crash into a utility pole.

After talking to investigators, Herring, 34, was arrested on suspicion of first-degree murder and attempted murder. Those charges could change because the baby died after Herring was booked into jail, Grubbs said.

Herring is now being held without bond in Sebastian County, near the Oklahoma state border. He didn't have an attorney listed in jail records and a message left at a phone number listed for him wasn't returned.

WREG reports that both bodies are being sent to the Arkansas State Crime Lab for autopsies.

  • Edecio Martinez

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