Thursday, October 12, 2000

Victim's kindness cited in her killing

The Associated Press

        AKRON — Family members and friends think a woman's kind, trusting nature and a lack of caution may have contributed to her stabbing death.

        Police Capt. Elizabeth Daugherty said Wednesday that investigators haven't determined what caused the attack early Saturday on Rachelle Greenwood, 25.

        The Akron Beacon Journal reported that Scott E. Henretty, 31, told mental health workers that Ms. Greenwood was “too friendly” and that she had to “be evil.” He is being held at the Summit County jail on $1 million bond, pending trial on a charge of aggravated murder.

        Capt. Daugherty said she didn't know about any such comments from Mr. Henretty. She said Mr. Henretty has refused to comment to police.

        Rob Coombs, one of Mr. Henretty's two attorneys, entered a plea of not guilty on his behalf Tuesday in Municipal Court. A telephone message was left for Mr. Coombs on Wednesday.

        Police think Mr. Henretty, a neighbor in Ms. Greenwood's apartment building, knocked on her door about 1 a.m. Saturday. She apparently invited him in. Shortly thereafter, Ms. Greenwood was stabbed several times in the chest with a kitchen knife.

        Police arrived after receiving calls reporting a woman in the apartment building was screaming for help. Police arrested Mr. Henretty after he was found nearby wearing bloodstained clothing. When officers entered Ms. Greenwood's apartment, they found her lifeless body covered in blood.

        Friends said Ms. Greenwood, an elementary education student at the University of Akron, often bought gifts to cheer her co-workers at a grocery store. She also was growing her hair to donate it to cancer patients.

        “I wish we didn't live in a society where you can't trust the person who lives across the hall, but you can't,” said Michelle Greenwood, Rachelle Greenwood's sister.

        Mr. Henretty has no criminal record besides a few minor traffic violations. There is no evidence that Mr. Henretty and Ms. Greenwood had any sort of history. Her family and friends do not think they were acquainted.

        Eric Smith, Ms. Greenwood's boyfriend of three years, said he had repeatedly warned her to be cautious.

        “She's extremely trusting,” he said. “I told her hundreds of times not to open the door, and if she was going to open the door, she should put the chain on. She assumed everyone was as harmless as she was.”


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