Son Kills Both Parents Before Running Off

Suspect ran over his father, then struck his mother over the head

APTOS — Sheriff’s Deputies with Santa Cruz County arrested the son of Joseph and Edith Henderson after he had reportedly killed them both at their residence on Ridgeview Drive in Aptos. Authorities believe that 39-year-old James Henderson hit his father with the vehicle that he was driving then went inside the house and struck his mother over the head with blunt object.

James Henderson

On Sunday afternoon, at 4:48 pm, authorities received a report of a family disturbance that occurred on the 100 block of Ridgeview Drive in Aptos.  When deputies arrived they found the body of 71–year-old Joseph Henderson outside his home, and inside the home they found the body of his wife, 68-year-old Edith Henderson, dead from what appeared to be blunt force trauma.

According to KSBW Reporter Amy Larson’s news report, Mrs. Henderson was on the phone calling 911 when she was killed.

Authorities had information that their son James Henderson, a potential suspect, had left the area on foot.  Santa Cruz County Deputies sent out a reverse 911 call informing people to lock their doors and report anything suspicious.

Authorities found Henderson hiding on a nearby property after a 3-hour manhunt.  He was arrested after a short struggle with the deputies.  No one was injured in the struggle.

“This was not a just an unusual crime for the neighborhood but an unusual for the city as well,” Santa Cruz County Deputy April Shalland said. “The entire city is saddened about this crime, these people were well-known in the community of Santa Cruz.”

Edith Henderson was the Vice President of Artistic Advisory and an active member of the Boards of Directors of the Santa Cruz County Symphony since 2011.  Mrs. Henderson also played violin with the San Jose Symphony Orchestra.  She was also active with the American Cancer Society

Authorities believe James Henderson suffered from a mental illness.  The investigation remains ongoing and the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office is asking anyone with information regarding this crime to call the Sheriff’s Office at 831-454-2847.

Read more:

KSBW: 3 hour Aptos double homicide manhunt ends; 1 arrested

Contra Costa Times: Aptos man and woman found slain at home; transient arrested

Son Kills Both Parents Before Running Off was last modified: July 2nd, 2013 by admin

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Daniel Miranda

Dan Miranda is a Journalist, Photographer and Sports Writer for the San Jose, Santa Cruz, and Monterey area. He can be reached at