Retired wrestling star Billy Jack Haynes — who grappled with the likes of Ric Flair and Randy Savage during his nearly 15-year career in the ring — has been arrested for allegedly fatally shooting his wife in their Oregon home last Thursday.
Police responded to reports of gunfire in the Portland neighborhood of Lents around 10 a.m. on Feb. 8 and learned that Haynes, 70, was inside the residence and refusing to come out.
With the help of SWAT teams, Haynes was taken into custody without incident after a two-hour standoff.
Police found his wife, Janette Becraft, 85, dead inside the home.
“He is in police custody at a local hospital while he is being treated for a medical condition unrelated to the homicide or his contact with law enforcement,” police said after the arrest.
“Once he is released from the hospital, which may be days from now, he is expected to be booked into jail. Haynes’ charges will be released once he is booked.”
A long time friend and neighbor said the couple was a fixture in the local community, with Haynes often regaling local wrestling fans with war stories from his glory days.
“It’s just a huge tragedy,” Brelynn Matthieu told KOIN. “I was pretty decently close to both of them and loved them very much. It’s a really sad day, all around.”
Becraft’s son from a prior relationship, Tod Becraft, was a close childhood friend of Haynes. After her first husband died, she would later marry the wrestler 10 years her junior.
“You are now flying with the angels,” the victim’s daughter, Kim Becraft, wrote on Facebook. “They are lucky to have such a beautiful soul. Love you Mom.”
Haynes is best known for his run in the World Wrestling Federation from 1986 to 1988, when he earned a spot on the famed 1987 Wrestlemania III card in Detroit.
He would eventually hang up his trunks in 1995 after brief tenures in several smaller promotions.
Born William Haynes Jr., the grappler has given frequent retrospective interviews since retirement, and acknowledged involvement with cocaine trafficking rings during the 1980s.
In 2018, Haynes claimed to have witnessed the 1987 beating death of two Arkansas teens after they stumbled on a drug deal being conducted by corrupt local police. His recollections were never confirmed.
Courtesy: New York Post