Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

The Murder of Mindy Schloss

Joshua Wade


Joshua Wade
Joshua Wade
Joshua Wade was, in many respects, the opposite of Mindy Schloss. In photos Schloss projects a calm confidence and friendliness. Wade appears to be nothing other than a thug who demands "respect," or, more precisely fear.

Wade, who spent much of his adolescence in a juvenile detention center after a series of drug convictions, could best be described as a repeat loser. According to documents introduced into evidence by the prosecution, Wade "has demonstrated violent and aggressive behavior from on or about the age of 10 and continuing into his adult life, and between 2000 and 2007, has violently killed two women."

Wade's first brush with the law was at age 12. At 16 he was caught carrying a handgun, and by 19 he was an accused-but-acquitted felon. Unfortunately Wade's criminal career was only getting started.

Della Brown
Della Brown
The next year, at age 20, Wade violently raped and murdered Della Brown, a 33 year-old Native American woman by bashing her head in with a rock. During the trial the coroner testified that Brown's skull was so damaged it resembled a "bag of ice." Brown's hair had either been cut or ripped out; and burnt matches littered the shed's floor near her body. Brown's body had been found by unsympathetic gawkers who paraded through the shed for days, lighting matches to see her battered corpse. No one called 911. Although initially Wade confessed to the murder, he soon recanted. His lawyer claimed that Wade had merely been trying to impress his associates.

The jury was swayed by his defense, and Wade was acquitted of Della Brown's murder. He was, however, convicted of evidence tampering in the case.

After the acquittal, Wade, who has the unfortunate tendency to grandstand, stated, "Even though 12 people said I'm not guilty, everyone believes I am guilty....I just want to say thank you to my jury for being fair."

He added, "The only thing at all in this case that I'm sorry for is I did not call the police whenever I found that lady's body," clearly showing no remorse for the crime of which he had been convicted.

Wade managed to illegally obtain a handgun, a Glock .45 with a laser sight, despite his multiple felony convictions. Never one for subtlety, Wade took the gun home and proceeded to brandish it for his friends. He even took photographs of himself posing with the gun, the menacing red pinpoint of the laser sight resting on the wall. In mere days that red pinpoint would come to rest on the back of Mindy Schloss' head before Wade ended her life.

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