Madison County
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Huntsville, Alabama
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08/14/2015

Additional Capital Murder Charges added for Saint Clair Fire

PRESS RELEASE

 

Madison County Sheriff’s Office

Huntsville, Alabama

Blake L. Dorning-Sheriff

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE-Additional Capital Murder Charges

August 14, 2015

 

Sheriff Blake Dorning announced today that Deputies with the Madison County Sheriff’s Office responded to a residential fire on August 4, 2015, in the Northeastern area of Madison County, at 215 Saint Clair Lane. The home was occupied by: Jean Smallwood 67 years old female, Kristin Henderson 35 years old female who was currently nine months pregnant, Clayton Chambers 8 years old male, and Eli Sokolowski 1 year old male; all of the residents perished in the fire. All four of the deceased were taken to the Alabama Department of Forensic Science for autopsy (the results will not be released due to this being an active investigation). Madison County Sheriff’s Office Investigators along with the Alabama State Fire Marshal’s Office processed the fire scene to determine cause and origin. Investigators with the Madison County Sheriff’s Office arrested: Christopher Henderson 40 years old male, from Huntsville and Rhonda Carlson 42 years old female, from Huntsville on August 5, 2015 and both were charged with Capital Murder, for a murder committed during an Arson, with the victim being Eli Sokolowski. Investigators have continued to actively investigate this case and have consulted with the Madison County District Attorney’s Office and the following charges have been added to Christopher Henderson:

 

  1. Capital Murder during a Burglary in the first or second degree, with the victim being Jean Smallwood.
  2. Capital Murder where two or more people are murdered by the defendant, with the victims being: Jean Smallwood, Kristin Henderson (with unborn infant), Clayton Chambers, and Eli Sokolowski.
  3. Capital Murder where a court has issued a Protection from Abuse (PFA) Order, with the victim being Kristin Henderson.
  4. Capital Murder for a victim that is less than fourteen years of age, with the victim being Clayton Chambers.
  5. Capital Murder for a victim that is less than fourteen years of age, with the victim being Eli Sokolowski.
  6. Capital Murder for a victim that is less than fourteen years of age, with the victim being the unborn infant of Kristen Henderson.

 

 

 

The following charges have been added to Rhonda Carlson:

  1. Capital Murder during a Burglary in the first or second degree, with the victim being Jean Smallwood.
  2. Capital Murder where two or more people are murdered by the defendant, with the victims being: Jean Smallwood, Kristin Henderson (unborn infant), Clayton Chambers, and Eli Sokolowski.
  3. Capital Murder for a victim that is less than fourteen years of age, with the victim being Clayton Chambers.
  4. Capital Murder for a victim that is less than fourteen years of age, with the victim being Eli Sokolowski.
  5. Capital Murder for a victim that is less than fourteen years of age, with the victim being the unborn infant of Kristen Henderson.

Both Christopher Henderson and Rhonda Carlson’s arrest and additional charges were based upon Probable Cause and both are considered to be innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

Due to the fact that this is an active and ongoing investigation no further details will be released.

Questions concerning this release may be directed to Madison County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigations Division (CID) Investigator Jeremy Hughes (256) 533-8857.

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