In the 1980s, the boy band Hi-Five blew up on the charts with their hit song - "The Kissing Game." But shortly afterward TRAGEDY began to strike the group.
On June 1, 2007, the lead singer Tony Thompson's body was discovered by security officers near an air-conditioning unit outside of an apartment complex in his native Waco, Texas. It turns out that Thompson died from “toxic effects of chlorodifluoromethane,” or inhaling a toxic amount of freon from out of the air conditioner.
Well the curse struck again in 2014 when Hi-Five singer Russell Neal was arrested in the murder of his wife, Catherine Martinez. At the time, most thought it was going to be a cut and dry conviction - but that's not what happened.
The curse struck again last week when a court has declared that Russell is mentally incompetent to stand trial.
Here is how the website Madame Noir is reporting it:
The series Crime Watch Daily, which is hosted by former To Catch a Predator host Chris Hansen, interviewed Martinez’s family about their loved one and the incident. A model and fitness trainer, her family said that they weren’t really impressed with Neal from the beginning, but she liked him and was into the money he said that he had. Catherine’s sister Emy said she could tell something about him was off.
“There was something about him, his eyes, it was just something dark, so I didn’t like him from the get-go,” she said. “It was just the way he came, like you know, he was really stuck up — 'You ain’t got no money, stop it.'”
But the truth was that as their relationship went on, it became apparent that his finances were in a really bad place. Catherine wound up being the breadwinner for their family, and to make matters worse, her family said he was abusive to her.
“There were bruises and scratches and she would try to come to our house with makeup, and she would try and cover it up with makeup,” Martinez’s sister Glenda said. “You would see the foundation, everything trying to cover up her eyes, but we would tell.”
Still, he was a good father according to Martinez, and he kept telling her that he was going to change. Sadly, things took a tragic turn. The last time Martinez saw her mother was on June 28, 2014. A few days later, Neal would enter into the police station and all of their lives would be turned upside down.
“You couldn’t tell it was her,” Glenda said of the condition of Martinez’s body following the attack on her. According to her family, Neal didn’t go to police about the incident until two days after she was killed, their sons locked up in a room in the house during the incident. “I was just hoping they had the wrong person because it didn’t look like her. I mean we all know she was beautiful but it didn’t look like her at all.”
Neal would be arrested, charged, released on bail, and then, out of nowhere, have his bail revoked. While in jail, he started to call himself Jesus Christ and has since been placed in a mental institution in Rusk State Hospital in Texas. Harris County Court decided that as of right now, Neal is mentally ill and remains incompetent to stand trial — this despite police reportedly stating that he knew what he was doing when he attacked his wife in 2014. And to make this situation even more of a mess, Neal's brother Ronald is accused of murdering his wife years ago and pleading incompetence to avoid standing trial. He was abusive to late wife Stovyne Neal, and after she filed for divorce, he attacked her in 2007.
He shot her multiple times while her son was in the home calling police. He initially tried to plead insanity, calling his attack on his wife a crime of passion, but he eventually dropped the claim and plead guilty. Ronald Neal was given 80 years, and he will have to serve 30 years in prison before he is even eligible for parole.