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Durham man accused of killing wife, abducting children

Posted July 18, 2011

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— A Durham man was charged Monday with stabbing his wife to death and then fleeing with their three children, prompting an Amber Alert.

Police say Kenya Domon Mangum, 29, stabbed his wife, Amanda Mangum, 23, in the parking lot of a KFC/Taco Bell at 1804 S. Miami Blvd. at about 10:30 p.m. Sunday. He then drove off with their three children – Brianna, Devion and Kenya Mcgruder-Mangum – ages 8, 4 and 2, respectively, police said.

"We saw him jumping on her, and now he took off in a van," a 911 caller told a dispatcher. "She's cut up pretty bad."

Amanda Mangum was taken to Duke University Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

Neighbors said that they heard the couple arguing Sunday night and saw Amanda Mangum leaving the house at 1820 S. Miami Blvd. Her husband followed her in their van with the children inside, the neighbors said.

They said they were unsure what the argument was about but noted that Amanda Mangum was holding an envelope and asked Kenya Mangum to give her the van so she could take the children somewhere.

"They were outside arguing. She was standing at the top of my driveway, and he was inside the van with the kids and they were just going back and forth," LaKesha McCullough said. "He was just like sitting there, not responding to her, just looking at her with a straight face. He didn't care."

Amanda Mangum then walked off, McCullough said.

The Durham County Sheriff's Office was called to the Mangum home at about 8 p.m. Sunday, but no one was home when a deputy arrived. The deputy then saw a woman later identified as Amanda Mangum walking along U.S. Highway 70, and he stopped to check on her, authorities said.

Police investigate stabbing at Durham KFC/Taco Bell Durham man accused of killing wife, abducting children

The sheriff's office declined to provide more information about that interaction for fear of jeopardizing the investigation of Amanda Mangum's death. The office has turned over all of its information to the Durham Police Department.

An Amber Alert was issued early Monday for the children, who were later found safe with their father in an apartment on Thames Avenue, which is about 10 miles from Miami Boulevard. Police said the apartment doesn't belong to any family members but declined to comment further.

Kenya Mangum was arrested and charged with murder, and officers took the children to the Durham police station at about 5:30 a.m. Family members picked them up later.

Police haven't said if the children witnessed the stabbing, but neighbors said they believe they probably saw it from inside the van.

"I feel sad for the kids. My prayers go out for those kids," McCullough said.

Kenya Mangum has been charged previously with assault with a deadly weapon, assault on a female and communicating threats, but court records show his only convictions were on drug-related charges in 2005 and a sex offense in 2002.


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  • overonetkb Jul 18, 2011

    This Kid was a good kid . When I found out it was her murdered it made me cry . We shouldn't worry about intervention now . Maybe if we know or see the next Amanda we can stop the violence and brutality that these kind of relationships bring. This kid lost her youth having kids and becoming a bride before her time. I once begged her to go back to school and start over . she responded " How do you learn to fly with broken wings " Miss you Amanda ,may peace be with you now ..

  • gottabkidnme Jul 18, 2011

    I agree gingerlynn and jbarron4950...15 is not an age of consent. Not saying that it would have changed fate. I am pretty sure that even before her death if she could rewind time, she would have had nothing to do with him; but who knows any better at 15. I pray for the children. RIP

  • angelashackle Jul 18, 2011

    These events are happening in alot of relationships. But there are signs of violence and we have to first respect ourselves and leave when you see the first sign. No one instantly gets crazy. Don't want to have a relationships so bad that you take whatever. No one should be hit, verbally abused or disrespected. Respect yourself and your children so they won't have to raise themselves when something happens.

  • tjhiggs68 Jul 18, 2011

    This is aweful what happened to the young lady and her children. Now these precious babies have no mother and no father. I pray for them that they continue in life with a good upstanding family and not with someone who will abuse them. They will forever be broken by the events they may have seen happen to their mother! God bless these children!!!

  • cocker_mom Jul 18, 2011

    way too many women dying at the hands of their spouses 'round here. (and it's not just Durham, and it's not just one race or one socioeconomic group....)

    When women try to leave, it's the most dangerous time.

    How do we get these women (and the children) the help and protection they so desperately need?

  • CharmedLife Jul 18, 2011

    "--If you are hearing "inner voices" maybe you are not well..

    Just saying.." ABM

    It's a thing called "woman's intuition"....just saying....

  • gingerlynn Jul 18, 2011

    jbarron4950 Thank you for clearly explaining why I asked the question.

  • jbarron4950 Jul 18, 2011

    They can choose to be survivors.

    Choose being the magic word here. The world will continue to spin each and every day, regardless of our sitautions....how we CHOOSE to participate in the world is up to us.....btneast

    They can choose to be survivors? Did you even think before you wrote that foolishness. The kids are 8, 4 and 2. After probably seeing their mother murdered, do you think that their rationalization is on survival? Do think that they can comprehend the meaning of choosing to be a survivor? Some of you people are just too much.

  • jbarron4950 Jul 18, 2011

    I think her age came into question due to the fact that she was 23 and the oldest child was 8. That would have made her 14 or 15 when got pregnant and had this child. He would have been 19 or 20. I think what people arequestioning is why he wasn't charged with statutory rape when the initial event took place. It's a valid question. It is quite possible that she might be alive today if someone had intervened back then. She was underage and he was an adult. Did someone just simply not care?

  • gingerlynn Jul 18, 2011

    The reason I think age is a factor is that at 15 she got hooked up with a violent, controlling man who probably told her everything she wanted to hear. Now she is older and wiser and trying to leave and ends up dead. Very Very Sad.