Death row murderer Henry Eugene Hodges slices off penis


Henry Eugene Hodges

Henry Eugene Hodges, convicted in 1992 of the murders of three gay men, and suspected of others, chopped off his penis with broken glass after guards refused him a special food package. The former Gay4Pay street hustler has been on death row since 1992.

Henry Eugene Hodges grew up as the favourite child of a violent father who spoiled him while violently abusing his mother and brothers. At twelve, Hodges stopped attending school, preferring to hang out with older men and sniff glue.

After spells in juvenile detention, he served 4 years in prison from the age of 17 for armed robbery and attempted kidnapping. He worked various jobs upon release but also began hustling in Nashville. The Gay4Pay street hustler allowed men to fellate him in exchange for money.

Rippling muscles, piercing eyes and quiet demeanour

The Atlanta Constitution reported ‘the street hustler’s rippling muscles, piercing eyes and quiet demeanour’ initially proved a hit. But hints of the killer’s violent streak sometimes emerged and Nashville gay bar owners started warning customers off Hodges.

In 1989, 22-year-old Henry Eugene Hodges met and fell in love with 15-year-old runaway Trina Brown. His first proven killing occurred two months later. Hodges and Brown planned to make enough money to move to Florida where Hodges planned to give up hustling and set up as a drug dealer. He murdered another two customers before the pair were caught.

A psychiatrist testified at Henry Eugene Hodges’ trial that he possed all the criteria essential to an anti-social personality disorder. Hodges was self-centred, notoriously dishonest, and possessed little empathy. He was willing to use any means to get what he wanted, and knew how to work the system ‘real well’.

In court, Hodges blamed the murders on a never-before-mentioned sexual assault he said occurred when he was twelve. He said he killed customers who did anything to trigger memories of the childhood sexual assault.

However, as the Tennessean reported, the jury never bought the ‘grudge against gays’ defence. They instead saw the murders as the work of a cold, heartless man after money and thrills.

Police suspected Henry Eugene Hodges of multiple other homicides and he admitted to a further 8 in television interviews. However, police closed his files after he was sentenced to two life sentences and death.

Sliced off penis

The recent incident occurred after guards refused Hodges a special meal because he was one month shy of the required six months of clear conduct. He retaliated by smearing faeces on the walls of his cell.

The guards then refused him food prompting him to slash his wrists. Taken to the prison infirmary, Henry Eugene Hodges subsequently chopped off his penis with shards of broken glass. Surgeons have since reattached the penis.

Also: The Doodler: the fight to find America’s forgotten serial killer.

For the latest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) news in Australia, visit qnews.com.au. Check out our latest magazines or find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

Destiny Rogers

Destiny Rogers embarked on her career in the media industry immediately after high school, initially joining Mirror News, which later evolved into News Ltd. She fondly recalls editing Ian Byford's 'Passing Glances: A History of Gay Cairns' as one of her most fulfilling projects. Additionally, Destiny co-researched and co-wrote 'The Queen's Ball', chronicling the history of the world's longest-running continuous queer event. Her investigative work on the history of Australia's COON Cheese and Edward Coon culminated in the publication 'COON: More Holes than Swiss Cheese', a collaborative effort with Dr. Stephen Hagan. Destiny's journey at QNews began as a feature writer, and she was subsequently elevated to the role of Managing Editor of QNews Magazine in 2018. However, in July 2022, she decided to resign from this role to refocus on research and feature writing. For contact, please reach out at destinyr@qnews.com.au.

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