Former WWF Star Arrested in Wife’s Murder After Police Standoff


Former professional wrestler William Albert Haynes Jr., 70, better known by his ring name Billy Jack Haynes, was arrested at his Portland, OR home last week after a two-hour standoff with police. When he was taken into custody, authorities found his wife, 85-year-old Janette Becraft, dead from a gunshot wound.

Police had been called to the Lents neighborhood of Portland around 10 a.m. on Feb. 8 over reports of gunfire. When they arrived, Haynes initially refused to come out of the residence, until SWAT intervened. He was eventually arrested without incident.

“He is in police custody at a local hospital while he is being treated for a medical condition unrelated to the homicide or his contact with law enforcement,” a police spokesperson said following the arrest. “Once he is released from the hospital, which may be days from now, he is expected to be booked into jail. Haynes’ charges will be released once he is booked.”

Haynes began his wrestling career in 1982. From 1986 to 1988 he wrestled with the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) and even earned a spot on the 1987 Wrestlemania III card in Detroit where he faced off against the wrestler Hercules in the “Full Nelson Challenge.” Although he never achieved the level of fame of some of his colleagues, Haynes went up against names such as Ric Flair and Randy “Macho Man” Savage in during his time in the WWF. 

Billy Jack Haynes has been arrested for Murdering his wife.

— 80’s Wrestling (@80sWrestling_) February 10, 2024

A neighborhood of the couple, Brelynn Matthieu, who lives in the other unit of the duplex, expressed her shock at the killing to KOIN 6 News. “It’s just a huge tragedy,” she said. “I was pretty decently close to both of them and loved them very much. It’s a really sad day, all around.”

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