ATHENS, Texas (January 27, 2009)—Beverly Clark, 54, the aunt of late Branch Davidian leader David Koresh, remained in the Henderson County Jail Tuesday, charged in the stabbing death of Koresh’s mother, Bonnie Haldeman, 64.
Haldeman was found slain Friday at Clark’s home in a rural area near Chandler, about 175 miles north of Houston in East Texas.
Haldeman wrote a 2007 autobiography called “Memories of the Branch Davidians: The Autobiography of David Koresh’s Mother,” which described how her son, Vernon Howell, became David Koresh.
CHANDLER — A woman charged in the stabbing death of her sister last Friday has a long history of mental illness, a family member told the Review Monday.
Hollie Helrigel, the niece of Beverly Clark and Bonnie Haldeman, said she lived near both aunts on Farm-to-Market Road 3079. Clark is accused of stabbing and killing Haldeman, 64, last week.
Haldeman is the mother of David Koresh, the infamous self-proclaimed leader of the Branch Davidian sect. Koresh, along with many of his followers, died in a fire during a standoff with federal agents on April 19, 1993. Seventy-five people died that day.
Helrigel said she remembers Haldeman often coming to the aid of Clark, her sister. Haldeman had reportedly gone to Clark’s residence Friday to take her to the doctor on the afternoon of her death.
“Beverly had suffered from mental illness since she was in her late teens,“ Helrigel said. “She was sick. Like so many other times, Bonnie was trying to get her to where she needed to be to get the help she needed to get her back on track.”
Clark, 54, remained in the Henderson County Jail Monday, with bond on the murder charge set at $500,000.
Helrigel said Haldeman should be remembered for more than the Koresh connection.
“She had gotten past all that and was moving on with her life,” Helrigel said. “This incident doesn’t have anything to do with what happened in Waco. I think they need to let them rest in peace.”
Bonnie had recently started attending the Chandler Seventh Day Adventist Fellowship, Helrigel said.