Cheri Brooks, the woman who killed Vera Reigle in 1982, has a long criminal history and has never seemed to have mended her ways. In fact, she is still committing crimes and is currently incarcerated.
Cheri was a violent criminal and even had her own son killed after he got caught for obstructing the course of justice in connection with his mother’s murder. In addition, she was obsessed with a child that was not her own daughter and would not let her out of her sight. This was in direct contrast to her treatment of her own son who she abused and neglected.
When Vera Jo Reigle became pregnant, Cheri’s daughter Sugarbabe was ecstatic. She was overseeing her mother’s disability checks and knew she was going to have a baby girl. The baby was born and named Willadean Messersmith. Sugarbabe took total control of the child and would not allow Vera Jo any contact with her, not even allowing her to see the child.
Over the years police began to investigate the Brooks family and found that the entire household was aware of the abuse Vera was experiencing and were either complicit or involved in her brutal treatment. In fact, in several interrogations and confessions, Daniel Bixler admitted that he assaulted her MANY times and was not charged. In the end, Vera was murdered and her body dumped in the Blanchard River. A black gravestone now marks her resting place.