Three killed in Madison County, child abducted; ASP makes quick arrest


The Arkansas State Police (ASP) is leading a homicide investigation involving the deaths of three Madison County residents and the abduction of a child from the home where the killings occurred.  Late Tuesday afternoon, the Madison County Sheriff’s Department made a request for Arkansas State Police Special Agents to conduct the investigation.

According to a release from the state police, sheriff’s deputies were contacted about 5 p.m. by an individual reporting three people were dead inside a residence at 3487 County Road 6041, southwest of Huntsville. The homicide victims were identified as Tami Lynn Chenoweth, 51, James Stanley McGhee, 59, and Cheyene Chenoweth, 26.

Arkansas State Police Criminal Investigation Division Special Agents called to the crime scene were able to begin developing leads in the case, prompting a statewide search for two particular vehicles known to have been at the residence earlier in the day and possibly driven away from the crime scene by the killer.  Information was also developed identifying a child believed to have been at the home who was abducted by either the killer or a woman who had also been at the crime scene, the release said.

State troopers assigned to the Arkansas State Police Highway Patrol Division found one of the vehicles abandoned in Faulkner County along Interstate 40 near Mayflower. Troopers secured the truck and transported it to state police headquarters where special agents began searching for evidence associated with the Madison County homicides and child abduction.

At 10:10 p.m., Highway Patrol Division troopers spotted a van matching the description of the second crime scene vehicle traveling westbound along Interstate 30 near Benton. 

As state troopers initiated a traffic stop, a passenger in the van exited the vehicle armed with a rifle and began verbally provoking the troopers who had made the traffic stop. 

Simultaneously other troopers moved-in from behind the gunman and were able to arrest Hunter Chenoweth, 22, of DeQueen.

The driver of the van stopped by state police was a 25 year-old DeQueen woman. Also in the van was the abducted infant, less than one year-old, according to the release.

The child was unharmed and later released to the Department of Human Services. The female driver has been questioned by state police and released.

Chenoweth is being held at the Saline County Detention Center while the homicide investigation continues today. Formal charges associated with the homicides will be determined by the Madison County prosecuting attorney.

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