|Elmer Wayne Henley Jr.|
|Birth name:||Elmer Wayne Henley Jr.|
|Born:||May 9, 1956
|Number of victims:||27|
|Span of killings:||1970–August 8, 1973|
Elmer Wayne Henley (born May 9, 1956) is an American convicted serial killer, incarcerated in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) system. Henley was sentenced to six consecutive life sentences on July 16, 1974 for his role in a series of murders in Houston, Texas, in which a minimum of twenty-seven teenage boys were abducted, raped and murdered by Dean Corll between 1970 and 1973. Many of the victims were lured to Corll's home by Henley or Corll's other teenage accomplice, David Brooks. Dean Corll, the ring-leader of the murders, was shot dead by Henley, then seventeen years old, on August 8, 1973.
Wayne Henley was introduced to Corll by David Brooks, apparently as an intended victim, in late 1971 when he was aged fifteen. By the time Corll met Henley, he and David Brooks had abducted and murdered a minimum of nine Houston teenagers aged between thirteen and eighteen, including two friends of Henley, David Hilligeist and Malley Winkle, whom Henley had actively participated in the search for prior to meeting Corll. Corll apparently decided Henley would make a good accomplice and offered Henley $200 for each boy he could lure to his apartment. Henley became Corll's second accomplice and for almost two years, assisted Corll and Brooks in the abduction and murder of teenage boys. On August 8, 1973, Henley shot and killed Dean Corll, then phoned Houston police and confessed to his role in the murders.
Jack Cato, a reporter for Houston's NBC television affiliate KPRC-TV, accompanied Henley and police as Henley led them to a storage shed where he and Corll had buried some of murder victims' bodies. Cato allowed the use of his CB radio for Henley to call his mother. Henley told her that he had killed Dean Corll, all while Cato was capturing the conversation on film.
Henley was brought to trial in June, 1974 charged with the murders of six teenage boys whom he himself lured to Corll's apartment between March 1972 and July 1973. Henley was found guilty on July 16, 1974 and sentenced to six consecutive life terms. He appealed against his sentence, and his conviction was overturned on December 20, 1978. Henley was tried for a second time in 1979, but was again convicted and sentenced to six consecutive life terms.
David Brooks was tried in 1975 for the June 1973 murder of Billy Ray Lawrence, and sentenced to life imprisonment. Both men are still serving life sentences for their involvement in the crimes.
While in prison, Henley took up art. In an interview on KPFT's The Prison Show, he told host Ray Hill that he first discovered his artistic interest in 1993, after the Harris County medical examiner finally identified the body of the 26th victim of the early 1970s killing spree. Henley told Hill that he suffers from a severe color deficiency in his eyesight that makes it impossible for him to clearly distinguish reds and greens. To compensate, Henley said, he decided his portraits of humans would only be done in black and white; color would be reserved for still lifes and landscapes.
In 1997, the Hyde Park Gallery in Houston's Montrose area hosted Henley's first art show. Survivors of some of Henley's victims expressed outrage when they learned of Henley's show. In 1999 the city of Houston expressed interest in building a monument to victims of violent crime, which Henley said he would be willing to help pay for with part of the proceeds from a second art show.