The unimaginable, infamous case of Pam Hupp

A tangle of lies, greed, sex, and death—and a surprise arrest


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Great Article

I had not heard of this case but stumbled upon it while looking for interesting crime stories. The prosecution seems entranced by her. I hope she doesn't get away with killing poor Louis Gumpenberger. The evidence seems so obvious here that it really astounds me that Russ was found guilty in the first place. (WTF Jury???) I hope there is a book or a movie made about this. It's so fascinating!

DeeDee 56 days ago


Great read! Stellar reporting!

Han Del 70 days ago

Excellent Reporting, Ms. Cooperman!

I thought I knew this case pretty well, having followed its twists and turns from the beginning. But this is by far the most comprehensive narrative I've had the pleasure of inhaling - I mean reading. Your research is impeccable, the level of detail is intoxicating to someone like me and your writing skills are riveting... I love longform, and you do it justice. However, I couldn't help but feel like the bottom kind of falls out after this line: "On August 16, 2016, news broke that Pamela Hupp had shot a man." Everything after that just feels a little rushed. There is a lot of detail available that doesn't make it into the last act. I would love to see it fleshed out in the same compelling style as the rest of the article. And if you cared to explore the prosecutorial / judicial collusion angle, and maybe follow it up...why, that would be phenomenal. Thank you for an excellent read.

Devon Rémy 114 days ago

Pam hupp

I hope she is finally stopped from hurting anymore people. Hard to believe it could get this far.

susan 130 days ago

Pam hupp

I hope she is finally stopped from hurting anymore people. Hard to believe it could get this far.

susan 130 days ago

Great article but... lets Judge Kunza Mennemeyer off too lightly. Glad to hear she is now suspended, but her inexplicable ruling in the first trial that the defense could not introduce evidence of another suspect is what allowed the terrible policing and willful ignorance of the prosecutor to delay Pam Hupp's apprehension long enough for her to kill two more people. Judge Kunza Mennemeyer's name needs to be mentioned earlier in the article as the reason for the terrible ruling. She was elected with very little experience (nice job voters of Lincoln County--just saying "tough on crime" doesn't mean someone has the skill to get killers off the street), and (word on the street is) she did everything Ms. Askey asked of her to cover for her ignorance.

Otherwise, this is a deep and engaging take on a story that needs to be told over and over until those responsible for this miscarriage of justice are properly shamed.

Zak Meh 180 days ago

Judge Kunza Mennemeyer

I agree, a little more background on Judge Mennemeyer and the relationship between her and DA Askey would flesh out the depth and breadth of the corruption surrounding this severely mismanaged case.

Devon Rémy 114 days ago


I bet if Her Mothers death is investigated, they will find out, she probably not only killed her own Mother for the Money, but also because she knows her own Mother would tell the police that, she was very capable of doing something like this!

Mark Sanborn 192 days ago

Not for the money

I believe she and someone else killed her mom, but not for the money. She lied about her mom having a half a million policy. Her mom only had a final expense policy that paid a little under 4K. Her mom was broke, and family could not keep her in the facility any longer.. I believe they killed her to just get rid of her so she wouldn't be a burden to the family.

WantTheTruth....... 119 days ago

Jeanette Cooperman

Fantastic Article!!! Well done!

Jan 192 days ago

Fantastic Article

I totally agree with you. This article was very well written. It gave the facts. It also gave some details to allow the reader a chance to develop a sense of each person involved. Very well done, indeed.

Dawn Terry 155 days ago

Joel Schwartz

This man is a hero. I know he gets paid to do this, but he was the one sane person in this story to see through the obvious lies, to care about the truth and to fight for justice. I would love to meet him, shake his hand and personally thank him. He is the only redeeming element in this story of corruption and incompetence.

Marty Haas 193 days ago

Not All Heroes Wear Capes

I could not agree more strongly, Marty.

Ellie 154 days ago

Great Article

This was article was great! Informative, interviews, etc.

Brenda Jarvis 193 days ago

What is it with Missouri?

I followed the Ryan Ferguson trial and exoneration and was stunned at the level of corruption involved then. This case is horrifying. Do they only send the innocent to prison in Missouri?

Wide Eyed 195 days ago

Russ Faria was the obvious suspect

Can't blame the police. Russ Faria is the one who had the biggest motive, and is the one whom Betsy had told people she was afraid was going to hurt her. Certainly Pam Hupp now appears to be the most likely one to have murdered Betsy. But that was not the case until this most bizarre killing.

Lane 208 days ago


It's obvious to look at him first. But since when is 4 witnesses identifying you somewhere else not enough evidence to look around at other suspects? Especially the psychopath who was mysteriously in line to receive the insurance payout?

Reaves 206 days ago


So tell me, oh omniscient one, who all was it that Betsy complained to that Russ was going to hurt her? I would really like to know the answers to that one since as far as I know, have seen and have read there is only one person that has ever claimed that Betsy was afraid of Russ--Pam Hupp. Hupp has no credibility. Anyone with half a brain could've seen that VERY early on....and many did. Perhaps you can tell me at what point in which trial did anyone but Pam &/or the Prosecution claim that Betsy was afraid of Russ?

Mike 206 days ago

Pam Hupp surrogate?

I've heard Pam Hupp replied to other online comments thru the years using alias's. Have to wonder if someone isn't speaking for her here....... Pam (and prosecutor) were the only ones ever to advance the story of Betsy being afraid of Russ.

Karen 206 days ago

Not So Fast

Are you nuts? The only person Betsy allegedly told she was afraid of Russ was Pam Hupp.

Amy 206 days ago


Is this you, Leah Askey?
I can't think of anyone else who would say something so outragoues.
Betsey never told anyone she was afraid of Russ-- that was a lie by Pamela Hupp, the only person who profited off of Betsey's death.
By the way, how can you sleep at night knowing this woman killed two more people?

Angelia 203 days ago


Is this you, Leah Askey?
I can't think of anyone else who would say something so outragoues.
Betsey never told anyone she was afraid of Russ-- that was a lie by Pamela Hupp, the only person who profited off of Betsey's death.
By the way, how can you sleep at night knowing this woman killed two more people?

Angelia 203 days ago


Yes, the police CAN be blamed and so can the PA. Go read the court docs from BOTH trials and watch the videos of interviews of Pam and investigators along with the PA. They all knew Pam was beneficiary of Life Insurance which made her have the biggest motive. Betsy's own brainwashed family never even said she was afraid of him. Only Pam did via allegedly planting a letter on her computer. Can't fix stupid.

Not Lane 201 days ago

Lane, Russ is inocent

Labe, how about you sign over a life insurance pilicy to Pam Hupp and let us ttack how your death story plays out? Will she put your lived one on the spot for her actions? Even when that person has evidence showing them to be elsewhere? It truly comes down to evidence before casting judgement.

Ali 170 days ago


I'm almost speechless after reading this. I can't believe how horribly this investigation was botched. Because of bad police work, the murder was lazily pinned on the husband. That narrative was only kept up because of a relationship between the investigator and the prosecutor. What a travesty of justice! Two more people died because of bad police work. My takeaway from all of this is: God help me if I ever tangle with the justice system in Missouri. Thank you to St Louis Magazine for printing this story.

Stephanie 209 days ago


Not just lazy police work, a lot of prosecutorial misconduct. Google "Leah Askey".

Reaves 206 days ago


My parents lived down the street from Pam. My old man would walk their incredibly kind and loving dog everyday past Pam's house and he said the few interactions their dog had with her he did not trust her at all. Said he growled at her every time. I don't think that dog had ever growled at anyone else but her. I trust that dog's judge if character. She was a cruel woman. To kill someone for the insurance money is cold but to stab someone one considers their friend 55 times? Messed up.

Chris 210 days ago

Murder is Evil Period

Murder is cruel period.

It all makes sense now why Pam allegedly killed her mother too. Even her own Mom knew Pam was a bad seed.

Amy 209 days ago

Great Article

Wow, I haven't seen writing like this in a news source in years. Are you writing a book on the subject? Fantastic. You, dear writer, are a gem amongst many grains of sand.

jenny niendick 210 days ago

Pam Hupp

Great article!

Amy 212 days ago

PLot Twist

this would make a really good book

bob duncan 190 days ago