The skeletons in James Hodgkinson’s closet are starting to be revealed and one is particularly gruesome.
Twenty-one years before Hodgkinson went on to become the gunman who critically injured Rep. Steve Scalise, and shot at other Republican Congressmen as they practiced for a charity baseball game, he and his wife Suzanne took in a foster child.
The child’s name was Wanda Ashley Stock, and she was taken in by the Hodgkinson family in the summer of 1996.
But months later, she would take her own life her life came to a brutal end by her own hands.
In October of 1996, Stock parked her car on the side of the road, covered herself in gasoline and set herself on fire, according to a report by the Belleville News-Democrat.
At the time the Hodgkinsons told the News-Democrat that Stock was a “very practical, level-headed girl” and they didn’t know what drove her to suicide.
It was later learned that she had attempted suicide before moving in with the Hodgkinsons and she had a break-up with her boyfriend hours before her suicide.
Years after the incident, in 2002, the Hodgkinsons took the role of legal guardians for their 12-year-old great-niece, Cathy Lynn Putnam.
But Hodgkinson was alleged to have abused Putnam, who took the couple’s last name eventually.
According to court documents, the young woman wound up in the care of the Hodkinson’s next door neighbors legally.
“Since then His Honor has seen fit to award guardianship of Cathy to our next-door neighbors, which is a quite stressful and uncomfortable situation for our family,” The Hodgkinsons wrote in a court document dated Dec. 26, 2006, according to the News-Democrat.
That same year Hodsgkinson had his shotgun confiscated by authorities after a domestic incident with his daughter and two of her friends.
He allegedly went into a neighbor’s house where she and her friends were, punched the girl’s friend Aimee Moreland “in the face with a closed fist,” and pointed a gun at a boy outside of the home. He also fired a round but didn’t hit anyone, the Daily Beast reported.
In 2011 Hodgkinson was seen at an Occupy event in St Louis, Illinois where he gave an interview to Fox 2 News complaining about “the one percent.”
“The 99 per cent are getting pushed around and the one per cent don’t give a damn. So, we got to speak up for the whole country,” he said.
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