Amber Burch Pleads Guilty in Clemmons 'House of Horrors' Murder Case
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C.-- Thursday morning Amber Nicole Burch pleaded guilty to murder for her involement in the deaths of two men found buried in the backyard of house in Clemmons. The men bodies were found in July 2009.
Burch was sentenced to at least 30 years in prison.
Burch was indicted by a Grand Jury, January 2017, on charges of murder, armed robbery and accessory after the fact to murder. According to court documents, Burch is accused of shooting and killing Tommy Dean Welch and stealing his personal property. The report also states Burch helped boyfriend, Pazuzu Algarad dismember and bury Joshua Fredrick Wetzler' body in July 2009 after Algarad killed him.
Burch and Algarad were self-proclaimed devil worshipers.
The third suspect, 31-year-old Krystal Nicole Matlock was indicted for accessory after the fact to murder.
July 2009 - Skeletal Remains Found in Backyard of House in Clemmons
Forsyth County Sheriff Deputies found the skeletal remains of Joshua Wetlzer and Tommy Dean Welch buried in a shallow grave in Algarad's backyard in October 2014. Both men were reported missing in 2009. Deputies also arrested and charged Algarad's wife, Amber Burch, with first degree murder. Investigators say Algarad and Burch each killed one of the men, and helped each other bury the remains. Krystal Matlock, 28, was also arrested and charged with one count of Accessory After the Fact to Murder. She is accused of helping Algarad bury remains.
According to the Medical Examiner's report, both Wetlzer and Welch died after being shot.
PREVIOUS: Satanic Rituals and Assaults
Documents filed in the Forysth County courthouse show there were "satanic rituals" and "animal sacrifices" in the house dating back to about 2010. The documents show Pazuzu Algarad performed the rituals "regularly" at the house. Algarad changed his name from John Lawson in 2002. 'Pazuzu' is the name of a demonic god who was referenced in the movie the Exorcist.
According to criminal records, both Algarad and his wife, Amber Burch, also charged in the murders, have been convicted of assaulting his mother in the last few years. The first incident in the Forsyth County court system happened in 2010. According to statements, Algarad choked his mother until she couldn't breathe. When officers tried to charge him, his mother said she didn't want to 'prosecute' him because she was afraid of him.
Burch was also convicted of hitting her mother-in-law in 2011. Records say, she "slapped, pushed and attempted to choke her."
Even in light of the assaults, Algarad's mother lived with the couple in her house on Knob Hill Drive where the skeletal remains were found. She was one of four people at the house when deputies arrested the couple.
Foreclosure, Demolition and Sale
Toxic and Unsafe
The house on Knob Hill Drive was declared uninhabitable just days after the remains were found in 2009. A housing inspector noted several health hazards including:
- Hundreds of flies dead and alive
- Feces and urine that have been ground into the floors and walls
- Decaying animal parts and remains
- Appeared dried blood like substance appears on walls
- Mold and soot damaged walls and ceilings
- Animal cages with carcasses
A housing inspector with Forsyth County Housing and Community Development wore a Go-Pro camera as he walked through the house. He captured rooms with trash piled waist high, glass on the floor, pentagrams, swastikas and other satanic images spray painted on the walls.
The inspector is heard on the video saying, "Definitely unfit for human habitation," 46 seconds after walking in the front door.
Animal carcasses were found in a cage in the main living room. The hallway connecting the bedrooms is barely passable because of all the trash on the floor. As the inspector is walking down that hallway, one person is heard saying, "You haven't been to the worst part yet."
One of the bedrooms has trash piled about 4-feet high and the windows were painted black. In that room, the inspector noted "dried blood" appeared to be on the walls.
The so-called "House of Horrors" was foreclosed on in March 2015. The next month, it was sold to the highest and only bidder, Wells Fargo, for $123,798.39. By the end of April, the house was demolished and the lot was cleared. The lot was sold to a neighbor in August.