2020-05-21 03:51:10 UTC
Charles “Jack” Walls. TW: Sexual abuse:
Wade Knox was only 5-years-old when he began showing signs of emotional distress. His tantrums and anti-social behavior were alarming to the Knox family, and they did everything they could to get him help. He was diagnosed with dyslexia and attention deficit disorder, but even with doctors addressing Wade's apparent social and academic issues, his defiant nature persisted. As Wade grew a little older and entered into his formative teenage years he was constantly turning up with injuries. Bruises that he would shrug off and wounds requiring stitches that there was always an excuse for. By the time he had reached the eighth grade Wade had lost an eye, but somehow even that seemed to have a reasonable explanation. Heath Stocks had also been suffering from similar difficulties. His relationship with his parents had been described as “strained.” His father -- who has been said to have had violent outbursts at times -- was thought to have been the source of the sudden alienation of the Stocks family from Heath's life. In spite of his troubles, Heath seemed like a straight-laced kid and enjoyed his role as an Eagle Scout. Heath went on to go to college, and though there was a deep wedge in their relationship, the Stocks family continued to be supportive of Heath and desperately strived to understand Heath's anger and frustrations. When Heath was arrested and charged for a D.U.I., the rift between Heath and the rest of the Stocks family grew ten-fold. On the night of January 17, 1997, after returning from a dinner date with his grandmother, Heath Stocks shot and killed his father, mother, and sister Heather in cold blood. Heather attempted to call 9-1-1, but it was already too late.
Heath fled his family's home and drove to Henderson University, where he had been attending school. Staying with a friend overnight, Heath threw the gun he used to kill his family in a nearby river, while other evidence was concealed behind a Pizza Hut. What would drive an Eagle Scout to kill his entire family? A family, who in spite of their tense relationship, were loving and supportive of their children. Heath Stocks says that after returning from dinner with his grandmother he went home to watch a basketball game. Tensions were high and his sister could tell something was wrong with Heath. Heath claims he had retrieved a gun and what began as a suicide attempt, ended with his entire family murdered within an instant. Heath Stocks was arrested and charged with the murders. He was later sentenced to three life prison terms. The only logical conclusion is that Heath's father, known for his temper, had driven Heath off the deep end. It wouldn't be until six months later, on Wade Knox's 18th birthday, that the truth would come out. Wade Knox's uncle, Charles “Jack” Walls, had been a longtime leader of the boy scouts. He was at one point voted “Man of the Year,” within the small community of Lonoke, Arkansas, and was known to attend church every Sunday. He forged a strong relationship with the boys entrusted within his care, and no one found anything about Walls the slightest bit unusual. As the boys began maturing into young men, Walls would use the opportunity to give the boys alcohol and provide them with pornographic materials during their scout-sponsored camping trips. In 1992, another Eagle Scout by the name of Doug Hogan blew the whistle on what was going on during these camping trips after he alleged that Walls attempted to unbuckle his pants. He and several other scouts spent the rest of the evening hiding inside of Walls' truck. The following day Walls confronted Hogan about the incident and asked him to keep quiet about the “joke,” but by then, Walls' secret was already out. The Hogan family confronted Jack about the allegations. They struck an agreement that if Jack resigned from his role as a Scoutmaster and agreed to stay away from minors that they would not press charges. Walls was forced to carry on his affairs with young boys in secret On Wade's 18th birthday, he forced Jack Walls into his family's home at gunpoint and demanded that he confessed to the Knox family what Walls had been doing to him for most of his life. The mysterious injuries, the missing eye, suddenly things about Wade's personality, and the unexplained accidents made sense. By then the damage was long done. Wade would go on to kill himself five years later. Jack Walls was sentenced to two 40-year terms and four life terms for his role in the rape of six boys, three of those boys being Wade Knox, Doug Hogan, and Heath Stocks. In the trial of Heath Stocks for the murder of his family, his relationship with Walls was kept under wraps. Stocks says the murders were at the direction of Walls after his secret had been exposed, but in court, there was to be no mention of the role Jack Walls played in Heath's life. Heath Stocks was released on March 12th, 2020. I chose this story because it happened right in my hometown, not even thirty years ago. There’s a child advocacy center in Lonoke dedicated to Wade Knox and his story, you can find them here: