Records show Chambers Co. woman accused of murdering 5th husband assaulted 2nd husband 27 years ago

Sarah Hartsfield is under investigation after her 5th husband's death was deemed 'suspicious' by officials

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Friday, February 10, 2023
Sarah Hartsfield: Woman accused of murdering 5th husband previously arrested for assaulting 2nd husband in Houston 27 years ago
A Chambers County woman accused of murdering her fifth husband has a prior assault history after an incident with her second husband 27 years ago in Houston, records show.

CHAMBERS COUNTY, Texas (KTRK) -- Sarah Hartsfield, the woman charged with the murder of her fifth husband, Joseph Hartsfield, in Chambers County, had one of her earlier brushes with the law during a brief stint living in the Houston area 27 years ago.

ABC13 has confirmed that on March 11, 1996, Hartsfield, who was going by a different last name, was arrested and charged with the assault of her then-second husband. Records from the Harris County Sheriff's Office show Hartsfield and her then-husband allegedly got into a scuffle in their apartment at the 14,000 block of Rio Bonito. The husband received a citation, but Hartsfield was arrested.

RELATED: Chambers County woman given $5M bond after she's charged in husband's murder

Records show that Hartsfield, in her early 20's, allegedly scraped and bruised her husband. The assault charges were dismissed a week later, with the reason marked "other" by prosecutors at that time.

ABC13 spoke with the second husband on Thursday. He opted to remain anonymous. He told ABC13 he wanted to forget he was ever involved with Hartsfield. Married to Hartsfield between 1996 and 1997, he described their time together as miserable and said his feelings were the same as Titus Knoernschild, Hartsfield's first husband, who talked to ABC13 earlier in the week.

"I knew she'd end up in jail someday," Knoernschild told ABC13. "So she cheated things. She would steal money from people. So I knew she would end up getting caught eventually. That was always my hope. But unfortunately, she's turned to (allegedly) murder. And that's what she's facing now."

RELATED: 1st ex-husband sorry that Chambers Co. man 'had to die' to arrest woman who was married 5 times

ABC13 also spoke with a boyfriend of Hartsfield, who dated her around 2014. He, too, wanted to remain anonymous, saying he had been looking over his shoulder since their breakup, wondering if she would come for him.

On Wednesday, officials in Minnesota announced they were reopening an investigation into the shooting death of David Bragg, Hartsfield's one-time fiance. He was shot to death by Hartsfield in 2018. Officials did not press charges at the time because it was determined to be self-defense.

RELATED: Minnesota death investigation involving Chambers Co. murder suspect Sarah Hartsfield reopens

Hartsfield remains behind bars in Chambers County on a $5 million bond. ABC13 made a call to her court-appointed attorney, but there has yet to be a response.

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