Calvin Fields and Laverne Fields are the subjects of ID’s latest crime show, Lone Star Justice, episode “The Killing Fields.” In 1999, Laverne Fields shot her husband to death in his Lindale, Texas home. The Texas murder resulted in a 90-year sentence for Laverne Fields, who police say gunned her husband down for the insurance money.
Lone Star Justice episode “The Killing Fields” on ID
A woman drenched in blood flees to her neighbor’s home to report that her husband has killed himself in their bedroom. The 911 operator hears Laverne Fields say in the background that her husband shot himself. Police arrive and find a deceased black man, lying face up in his bed. A bottle of pills and a gun are nearby. It appears to be a simple case of suicide until the local coroner changes the manner of death.
Two days after Calvin Fields’ body was found, the coroner discovered a bullet hole in the back of his head. The problem was the coroner had already embalmed the body when he discovered it, and according to him, the gun was fired three to six inches from the back of the head. There was no way it was a suicide.
Who Killed Calvin Fields?
To find out, Texas detectives spoke with Laverne Fields a second time. Her explanation was—she heard an explosion as she walked from her bedroom back into the kitchen to finish making Calvin Fields’ breakfast and coffee. Frightened by the sound, she returned to the bedroom, where she found her husband on his stomach. Before going to a neighbor’s home, Laverne performed CPR and tried to save his life.
The poor widow cried as she told police that she didn’t think it was a homicide. She claimed that she hadn’t seen anyone enter the house and that her husband’s depression and problems with diabetes caused him deep stress. With Laverne Fields’ permission, detectives searched the home again to look for forensic evidence. Back in the bedroom, police investigators were appalled to see that someone had cleaned the crime scene from top to bottom. Laverne Fields told Smith County detectives she couldn’t stand looking at the blood any longer, so she stripped the bloody sheets from the bed and washed them.
By October 1999, police were still working the puzzling case. A friend of Calvin described him as a hardworking, good man, who always did the right thing in life.
Detective Pam was brought into the case. She dug deep into his financial records and discovered that $42,000 was deposited into Calvin Fields’ account the year prior. The money came from the sale of a home. The buyer was a well-known money launderer named Kenneth Jordan, who was under investigation. Calvin had cooperated with the FBI. Now police wondered if Calvin Fields was murdered for it.
Texas police traced Calvin Fields’ money to a casino. Did he have a gambling problem? They went to the jail to talk to Calvin Fields’ daughter. She had gotten caught up with a bad crowd who sold illegal substances. She told them her ex-boyfriend didn’t like her father. And after the murder, word got back to her in jail, that he had intimate details of the murder. Recently, he had left town. To gather leads, Detective Pam performed a stakeout at Esquire, a dangerous nightclub that was known to cater to big-time drug dealers and shady people.
Instead of finding the dealer who had left town, a stunned Detective Pam found Laverne Fields hanging out at the club in seductive attire, just a month after Calvin Fields’ death. Suspicious of Laverne, investigators looked into her background and discovered she had a criminal record, which included charges for issuing bad checks and forgery. She had also been married three times. Laverne Fields is also known as Laverne Denise Fields, Laverne Simmons, Laverne Williams, and Laverne Carey. Two of her former husbands were dead. The third was still alive. He told them Laverne Fields had a violent temper and that while he was stationed in Germany, she stole money and struck a child.
Episode 3 will have you on the edge of your seat!
Lone Star Justice
Wednesday 9 pm @DiscoveryID
A distraught woman calls 911 to report that her husband has taken his own life; a discovery made by a mortician leads detectives to suspect murder; #geofffalk #lonestarjustice pic.twitter.com/NqARiUTxzI
— Geoff & Jan Falk (@gjfalk) June 17, 2019
Laverne Fields’ former husband’s commander ordered him to send her packing back to the United States. He divorced her when he returned. But he claimed that recently, she contacted him and wanted to get back together. Then he dropped a bombshell. Laverne Fields was going to kill her husband and collect the insurance money.
Sure enough, Calvin Fields was dead, and Laverne Fields was the beneficiary of a $97,000 life insurance policy that Calvin had taken out during his time as an employee at his job at The Trane Company. And there was another disturbing detail, Calvin Fields told co-workers he was going broke because his wife was spending his money and gambling at casinos.
— renewcanceltv (@renew_cancel_tv) May 7, 2019
A surveillance video at a Louisiana casino confirmed his statements. All the other suspects were cleared in the case, and Laverne Fields, who had failed to show up for the polygraph test, was finally arrested. A person in the benefits department at Calvin’s job said that his wife demanded that he change the insurance policy, making her the beneficiary instead of his mother. She also issued an ultimatum, if he didn’t change it, she would leave him.
Laverne Fields never loved Calvin. Instead, she married him for money then concocted a plan to kill him, get the insurance money, and live her life. Sadly, Calvin Fields missed all the red flags. (More arrest photos of Laverne Fields can be found here.)
[Image via Department of Corrections]