A 9-year old boy vanishes with his mother’s boyfriend, after she is murdered.

A small boy, Chance Wackerhagen, wearing a red and white sweater posing for a school picture.

Chance Wackerhagen

Missing:

Gender: Male
DOB: 9/2/84
Eyes: Blue
Hair: Blonde
Defining Characteristics: Has a small dimple on his right cheek
Remarks: Last seen 12/26/93

CASE DETAILS

On December 27, 1993, Jack White went to visit his daughter, Latricia, at her home in Lockhart, Texas. Latricia, a 38-year old nurse, hadn’t been seen or heard from in almost 24 hours. Jack said that he was worried:

“Everyone was concerned about Latricia because she just hadn’t gone to work Monday. And she never fails to go to work or at least call.”

A middle aged man with a mustache and orange tinted glasses, Lee 'Dub' Wackerhagen, wearing a plaid shirt.

Lee “Dub” Wackerhagen, Jr.

Jack rushed into the home and found his daughter in her bedroom.

“I just called her name and then I went over and felt her. And I knew that she was dead.”

Latricia White had been shot six times in the head with a .22 caliber weapon. Her death stunned her friends and neighbors. She left behind two children and lots of unanswered questions. Despite the violent nature of the crime, there were no signs of a struggle, and nothing in her house had been disturbed.

Just as puzzling was the disappearance of Latricia’s live-in boyfriend, Lee Wackerhagen, a local trucker nicknamed Dub. Also missing was Dub’s nine year old son, Chance, who had been visiting for the Christmas holidays. Sheriff Mike Bading of the Caldwell County Sheriff’s Department said that meant they had two possible scenarios to investigate:

“The fact that her boyfriend, Dub Wackerhagen, could not be found led us to several different areas to investigate. Number one, is he a suspect? Could he have committed this crime? The other one, is he a victim? Has he also been injured?”

A middle aged woman with short curly black, Latricia White.

Latricia White

Three days later, Dub’s pickup truck was found abandoned in Austin, Texas, about thirty miles from the crime scene. In the truck, investigators found Dub’s hunting rifle, which had not been fired, his checkbook, and his wallet. In the back were a toolbox, a spare tire, and Christmas gifts. Some of the gifts were unopened, and they were all streaked with blood. According to Sheriff Bading:

“Initially in the investigation we felt that this blood could have come from our victim. That was later ruled out. The blood type was not the same as our victim. So we feel that someone else was injured. Not seriously, but someone else was injured.”

Could that someone else have been Dub or Chance? The question could not be answered. All of the blood tests were inconclusive.

Lee 'Dub' Wackerhagen wearing a white shirt and cowboy hat.

Was Dub the killer or a victim?

The police and the White family believe that Dub murdered Latricia in a jealous rage. But Dub’s family and friends are convinced that he and Chance also met with foul play. Barbara Stage is Dub’s sister:

“We haven’t heard anything from him at all. And that tells me that he’s got to be dead.”

Dub’s friend, Melissa Reagan, was shocked:

“I don’t know who did it. I just know that he couldn’t have done it and then just disappear off the face of the earth.”

A blue and white pick up truck parked infront of farm silos.

Dub’s truck was found in Austin

To the police, however, Dub was the obvious suspect, especially after they began to take a close look at his relationship with Latricia. According to Latricia’s family, Dub was extremely jealous and suspicious. Dub’s ex-wife and Chance’s mother, Gaye Williams, agreed:

“I saw that he was a good man when I met him, and when I left him I was scared to death of him. He had a temper. He treated my oldest boy terribly, and I was scared.”

Dub’s son, Chance, was often the focus of his arguments with Latricia. Two days before Christmas, a heated argument led to Dub packing his bags and threatening to leave. Just three nights later, Dub, Chance, and Latricia were seen enjoying themselves at a local restaurant. The argument was apparently forgotten. But late the very next day, Latricia’s father found her shot to death in her bedroom. Dub and Chance had disappeared. Three days later, Dub was formally charged with first-degree murder. Four months passed with no sign of Dub or Chance. Then, Chance’s maternal grandfather, O.P. Williams, got an anonymous phone call at his home:

“All he said was, ‘Help me.’ And then the phone was jerked out of his hand and slammed down. I looked over at my wife, and I said, ‘That was Chance.'”

Could the plea for help actually have come from Chance? Dub’s family is convinced the answer is no. They believe that the phone call was a hoax and that Dub and Chance were murdered. But Latricia’s family and the police believe that Dub is a killer and that he’s still very much alive.

UPDATE: Investigators now have evidence that Lee and Chance Wackerhagen were victims of foul play. It is believed that this was a crime of passion and that they were murdered by someone closely associated to the family.


Watch this case now on Amazon Prime in season seven with Robert Stack and in season six with Dennis Farina. Also available on YouTube with Dennis Farina. Various seasons available now on Hulu.

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15 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Beth

    Micheal D Keith

    Good theory but an ex husband was never mentioned in the story. Do you know something about this case that we all don’t?

    Reply

  2. Avatar

    Johnathan

    I don’t think Dub killed latricia.. it has to be a guy that latrica has dated in the past. I believe that he found out that she was with someone else and became jealous. So he killed her..waited until dub n chance got home..took them for a drive and then killed them too. I don’t think that the call chance made was a hoax it was real. They was being held against they’re will and the grandmother could’ve called the police and trace that number to see where was he at.

    Reply

  3. Avatar

    Michael D Keith

    There is no mystery here. The police completely botched this case from the beginning.
    The wife was killed by her Ex-husband. They had been going through a nasty custody battle at the time. Why did no one look at this guy in the first place? Becuase the killer was highly creative. He came into the house, probably when she was alone, or when they all were asleep. The killer used a .22, likely modified with a silencer(a .22/silencer is virtually silent and is commonly used by hitmen, which is a possibility that the ex husband hired a professional) and shot her in the head multiple times. 6 shots is not overkill when dealing with a low caliber weapon. A professional killer would know this, many times a single .22 shot to the head is survivable.
    After the wife was murdered, he either waited for the husband and stepson to come home, or if asleep, woke them both up. He then took them outside and got them into the pickup truck. The pickup truck had the presents and other items in the back. The killer then got them either inside the cab of the truck and forced them to drive to an unknown location where they were both shot multiple times. The blood in the back was blood splatter from the both the step son and father. My guess is that they were in the cab and the killer didn’t realise that the truck had a slider rear window that was left open, and the blood splatter went into the back. The killer cleaned up any blood in the cab and disposed of the bodies. He left the truck where the cops found it, only leaving the wallet and checkbook behind to make sure the truck was quickly identified(this was the early 90s and police weren’t all connected by computers like they are now). This made the father an instant patsy, thus keeping the spotlight permanently on Lee and away from the obvious ex-husband. I think they only now have figured it out becuase the original investigators(idiots) have all since retired and a ne cold case investigator is now on the case. They most likely disposed of the blood spatter evidence long ago, due to the fact of being a small town police force and stupidity.

    Reply

    • Avatar

      Fred

      Very thought out but it doesn’t make a lot of sense. Why would the killer both taking Dub and Chances, seeing that Dub being a man, would be a major risk? Why not just shot him where he first encountered them? Whether that be sleeping or awake. I don’t know? Everything points to Dub. Still the one thing that bothers me with that line of reasoning is that if Dub did kill her, and took Chance on the run, it’s been so long why haven’t Chance at least reappeared. He would be a grown man now.

      Reply

  4. Avatar

    Charles

    So…they are dead, but the elusive question is why and for what reason was Latricia killed along with them? This makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. Perhaps a stalker or ex lover of Latricia killed all three of them? A close associate of the family is equally as baffling. To what end would killing all three of them serve? Does anybody have any theories on this?

    Reply

  5. Avatar

    Benjamin

    Did I miss something? He didn’t “take off with his mother’s boyfriend”

    Reply

  6. Avatar

    Hecate Sparks

    Cayleigh Elsie did a Youtube video regarding the case (The Unsolved Case of Latricia White | DARK MATTERS #9) . Chance’s mother Gayle commented on the video (which is pinned). Like it is stated above, the police now believe they were victims of foul play. Although Dub had a bit of a temper and argued with Latricia White, the family was seen eating and enjoying themselves at a diner prior to Christmas. Police think that Latricia was killed before the boys came home and upon coming home they either interrupted the killer or the killer ambushed them in the truck where blood was found.

    Their bodies have yet to be found and no suspect is named as of February 2018. Gayle was told in a recent meeting with the police that evidence was looked over and the initial investigation was flawed. But they do believe after looking over everything collected and retested, that Dub and Chance are sadly deceased. As of who the person may be is unknown. Gayle did not say it was a crime of passion but the police cant be sure. All that is know is that the killer(s) knew the family well and was welcomed into the home (as a break in was not present) it seems.

    I hope this family finds answers.

    Reply

  7. Avatar

    Tina Taylor

    I always thought that Dub did it and he and Chance were in hiding. You would think that they would have been found in 25 years though. I wonder what the Police have that tells them someone else killed all 3 of them and set Dub up. So sad that Dub’s father committed suicide. I pray that they all get answers soon and the deceased rest in peace.

    Reply

  8. Avatar

    Anna

    To bad you don’t have an aged photo of them both, I think they are alive and the truck was just staged.

    Reply

  9. Avatar

    Rocky Lore

    The police no longer consider Dub a suspect, but a victim.

    http://www.sanmarcosrecord.com/news/rangers-reopen-caldwell-cold-case

    Reply

  10. Avatar

    Anonymous

    I think I might have seen Chance on Monday. I’m going to submit the tip just in case it might be him.

    Reply

  11. Avatar

    reg

    This is a very sad story. I hope that Chance is alive. I pray for the families

    Reply

  12. Avatar

    Miranda shortt

    I hope chance is found alive soon.

    Reply

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