Mangum remains in jail after confessing to murder of gay flight attendant
A South Texas man awaits arraignment after admitting Saturday, July 14, to killing a gay Southwest Airlines flight attendant in the name of doing God’s work.
Terry Mark Mangum, 26, has said he plans to plead guilty to the murder of Kenneth Cummings Jr., 46.
Mangum told Brazoria County newspaper The Facts that he went to E.J.’s, a Montrose Street bar in Houston, on June 5, had a few drinks with Cummings, then went back to Cummings’ house and murdered him.
“I did it,” Mangum said. “Bottom line is I stabbed him in the head with a knife.”
Mangum feels that his work was “righteous” and said God called on him to “carry out a code of retribution” by killing a gay man because “sexual perversion” is the “worst sin.”
Mangum said he has studied the Bible for “thousands and thousands of hours” and claims that God first commanded him to kill during a “visitation,” or dream, while he was in prison for an earlier conviction in 2001.
Mangum said planned the kill for six months before stabbing Cummings with a 6-inch blade, and that Cummings was chosen by random.
The confession to The Facts contradicts what Mangum originally told police.
After becoming a suspect in the disappearance of Cummings, Mangum told police that since he was “definitely not a homosexual” he was only at the gay bar to find a gay man to pay for him to attend welding school.
Brazoria County District Attorney Jerri Yenne told the newspaper she does not plan to seek the death penalty, but that she does plan to charge Mangum with a hate crime. She went on to say that if a defendant has a hate crime enhancement, officials are not as like to grant parole.
Mangum also faces charges of tampering with evidence, because he cleaned up the murder scene before disposing of Cummings’ body, and fraudulent use of identifying information, because he used Cummings’ credit cards.
Mangum is being held on a $500,000 bond.
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition July 13, 2007