Court documents: Murder suspect killed then-wife in 1994

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – An Indianapolis man was preliminarily charged with murder Sunday after his wife was found dead in their northeast side home. The victim’s sons told 24-Hour News 8 that Tony Degrafreed, 50, also killed his then-wife more than 20 years ago and court documents confirm he was convicted of murder.

Jordan Yarbro, 19, told police that he heard thumping noises coming from his parent’s bedroom on Sunday morning. He said he banged on the door to see if everything was alright and that Degradgreed responded back that everything was fine.

Yarbo told police that his stepfather then came out of the bedroom and stabbed him in the chest. Degrafreed then fled the home on foot. Officers arrested him near the intersection of North Arlington Avenue and Devington Road, about a mile away from the home.

Police arrived at the home to find Rebecca Degrafreed, 47, dead on the bedroom floor with head trauma. Yarbo told 24-Hour News 8 his mom was beaten by a baseball bat and her throat was slit.

Rebecca Degrafreed (Provided Photo/Jordan Yarbo)
Rebecca Degrafreed (Provided Photo/Jordan Yarbo)

Jeffery Yarbro described his mother as an excellent motivator that pushed everyone to be their best. He said she helped teach them to always put family first.

“She was taken from us. You know it would be a completely different story if it was natural causes or it was a slip and fall, but she was taken from us,” Jeffery said.

24-Hour News 8 reported the murder of 26-year-old Stacy Degrafreed in January of 1994. IMPD said Tony, her estranged husband at the time, shot three people during a domestic dispute. Stacy died in that shooting.

“Is she dead, is she dead?!” Tony was seen yelling at police in 24-Hour News 8’s 1994 file video.

According to court documents, Degrafreed was convicted of murder in March of 1995. He was sentenced to 30 years in prison but only served about half of that time behind bars.

“He actually got out of prison not too long ago and he came here,” Jeffery said. “My mother gave him a place to stay, she put clothes on his back. She found a way to get him a job, make sure he could try to provide.”

The cause and manner of Rebecca Degrafreed’s death will be released by the Marion County Coroner’s office following an autopsy.

Tony Degrafreed when he was arrested for his then-wife's death in 1994 (top) and again when he was arrested Sunday for his wife's death (bottom)  Provided Photo/WISH TV
Tony Degrafreed when he was arrested for his then-wife’s death in 1994 (top) and again when he was arrested Sunday for his wife’s death (bottom) Provided Photo/WISH TV
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