The haunting case of Terry Todd Wedding resonates deeply in the small town of Greenville, where he committed the gruesome act of taking four lives in a single night. This incident forms the heart of ‘American Monster: A Wedding and Four Funerals,’ leaving the community in disbelief and profound grief. While the initial shock may render the crime seemingly incomprehensible, the series gets into the complex layers of the killer’s motives. Unraveling the psychological complexities behind such violent acts, the documentary explores the depths of human behavior and the disturbing circumstances that lead individuals to embark on violent rampages. The episode compellingly underscores the unnerving reality that every criminal act, no matter how senseless it may appear, is driven by a set of underlying motivations.
Who is Terry Todd Wedding?
Curiously, there is a scarcity of information regarding Terry Todd’s childhood within the public records. It is just known that he finished his school from Madisonville-North Hopkins High school and was a graduate of Life Christian Academy in Madisonville. By June 1999, at the age of 28, Wedding resided with his parents near Depoy in rural Muhlenberg County. While reports indicate that he had encountered minor brushes with the law, facing charges for relatively trivial offenses, there is no concrete proof of the same. Police records reveal a history of mental health issues, yet the specifics remain undisclosed to the public due to the confidential nature of such information.
In early 1998, Terry Todd Wedding received a diagnosis of bipolar disorder, also known as manic-depressive illness. Initially under care, Wedding’s mental health took a concerning turn by mid-June 1999 when he abruptly ceased taking his prescribed medications for reasons unknown. On June 15, Wedding’s family, consisting of his mother Beverly Wedding, father Manville Wedding, first cousin Joey Vincent, who was a Greenville police officer and pastor at New Cypress Baptist Church, and Joey’s wife Amy Vincent, grew alarmed by his erratic behavior. Living as neighbors in a mobile home, the Vincents had a one-year-old daughter. Reports indicate that Wedding’s mother, troubled by his refusal of medication, took decisive action, resulting in Wedding being forcibly admitted to Western State Hospital with the assistance of Joey Vincent, who, as a police officer, played a role in serving a mental-health 72- hour emergency protection warrant on Wedding.
Police records reveal that Wedding displayed reluctance to be admitted to the hospital, even issuing threats to Vincent. However, the sheriff deemed such behavior not uncommon among mentally ill patients. Subsequently released from the hospital, Wedding returned to his parents’ residence. Court records recount the events of June 26, around 6 p.m., when Wedding, under the pretense of visiting his grandmother’s cemetery approximately 3 miles from home, bludgeoned his father to death with an aluminum bat. He callously disposed of the body in a nearby railroad bed. Continuing his killing spree, Wedding then coerced his mother to the same location, where he callously shot her in her Dodge pickup truck.
On the morning of June 27, at approximately 6:15 a.m., Wedding, positioned in his parents’ backyard, had a clear view of the Vincent residence some 100 yards away. Joey Vincent, was preparing to take his ailing daughter, Brooklyn, to the hospital. Wedding, armed with a high-powered rifle, shot Joey as he was getting into his car. A violent struggle ensued as he approached the vehicle, where Amy, who was pregnant with her second child, fought desperately to protect Brooklyn. Wedding forcibly separated the child from her mother and shot Amy as well. Wedding did not harm the child and he took her to his residence. Derek Hembrick, Vincent’s brother and a witness to this nightmarish ordeal, promptly dialed 911. The child was with him till the police arrived and he surrendered to them.
Where is Terry Todd Wedding Now?
The trial for the four murders commenced in 2001. During the court proceedings, Wedding entered a guilty plea for all four murders. While admitting guilt, his voice quivered slightly, and he maintained a subdued demeanor throughout the hearings. Wedding informed the judge that he had committed the crimes but asserted that he was mentally ill at the time. Subsequently, he had received care and medications for his bipolar disorder. Despite the prosecutors’ efforts to secure a death sentence for his crimes, Wedding was ultimately sentenced to four life terms, one for each murder, without the possibility of parole on February 27, 2001.
Wedding, now 52 years old, is serving his sentence at the Kentucky State Reformatory, facing the destiny of spending the rest of his life in prison. The Greenville community was profoundly shocked by the incident. In the aftermath of the murders, flags flew at half-staff, and large blue ribbons adorned the doors of all businesses along Main Street, including the Harbin Memorial Library, in honor of the victims. The loss of a beloved police officer added to the community’s grief, as they mourned the lives lost, deeply affected by the tragedy that struck so close to home.