Sandra Cantu Case: Huckaby Swallowed Razor Blades- On Psych Meds

Missing GirlTracy, CA- One day after Melissa Huckaby’s arraignment in San Joaquin County court on murder, kidnapping, rape and molestation charges, new search warrants are issued and troubling new information is surfacing. Yesterday afternoon two additional warrants were served in the case against Huckaby; one at Clover Baptist Church, and the other at the home of Connie and Lane Lawless where the defendant lived.

As previously brought to you exclusively by Blink on Crime, it has now been officially confirmed that Melissa Huckaby was hospitalized for a suicide attempt immediately after Sandra Cantu was found. Huckaby, in an attempt to end her life, swallowed three Xacto blades. What is not known, is how she got there. Did she present herself after swallowing them? Did she tell her grandparents? We do know for certain that she did not call an ambulance. The treatment of ingested razor blades varies greatly based on when they are presented and where they are in the digestive cycle.  Sources within the investigation have also confirmed this is not the first time Huckaby has attempted suicide, or the second.  Blink on Crime has also learned that Melissa Huckaby may be on disability benefits for a psychologial condition, receiving $600 per month.


Connie Lawless, grandmother to defendant Huckaby, asked the public to reserve their judgement and honor Melissa’s right to a presumption of innocent:  

“This is totally out of character for our granddaughter,” she said. “She is a woman who never raised a hand to a child, never raised a voice.” She said she does not believe her granddaughter could have committed the crime, unless “some freakish thing happened.” She said her granddaughter had been taking some psychotropic medication, and that she had no criminal history aside from a shoplifting. 

Psychotropic Medications. Prior Mental Health Issues, including suicide attempts. Court Ordered Psych program. You see where this is going, right? Good Luck with that. I spoke to this woman, as did many reporters.  She was articulate and direct in her communication. She was able to recall very specific details and incidents that are specific to evidence in a rape and murder. She was able to utilize information in an attempt to cover up that crime. I am not a Mental health professional nor do I play one on tv.  However, she is no more schizo, delusional, psychotic and overall bat sh*t than any other alleged criminal I have interviewed.  If this family thinks they are going to spoon feed us the “we tried everything but institutionalizing her” I am going to come out swinging. She was a Sunday School teacher with access to children. She was put in that capacity by her grandfather, the Pastor Lane Lawless. I do believe I have found my new platform.

Head of Child Protective Resigns Abruptly


Lynn Frank, head of Sacramento County Health and Human Services, which oversees Child Protective Services, has resigned after a three year tenure in which 10 of children in the system have died.  By her own admission, 4 of them were preventable. While she is stepping down voluntarily, she is taking a leave of absence and returning July 1st in a different capacity to fulfill her retirement requirements. At this time, there is no indication this agency had any interaction with Melissa Hucakby or her daughter Madison as they are located within San Joaquin County. As Huckaby seemed to only really have a permanent address in Tracy since last Summer and her child is 5 years old, it is not out of the question. At this time, although there is evidence of a history of emotional issues and a condition of huckaby’s probation had a requirement to participate in a psychological program, it is not known if CPS of San Joaquin county has investigated Huckaby previously. 

Request From Tracy Police PD

Sgt. Tony Sheneman of the Tracy Police Department, is asking the public to help in the investigation of the murder of Sandra Cantu by Melissa Huckaby. If you or your child has had contact with Huckaby, you are urged to contact them immediately with any information you can provide: 209.831.4550.

Services for Sandra Tomorrow  sandracantuframe2 

A public memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. Thursday at the Merrill F. West High School gym, which seats about 2,500 people. Burial will be private.

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  1. new says:

    Thanks Brenda in Virginia. Was unaware it was LE instructions. Sometimes I only see the tree, Thank you for reminding me of the whole Forest. I will use biting as an instruction.

  2. Jaelin says:

    Re: comment 27 and 62

    CBS 13 is reporting “genital trauma”. Here is a link to the article Last paragraph

    Jaelin it is in the motion from Behar, as relayed to him, but there has been no autopsy release on specifics. I never thought I would say this but personally I hope they seal it. I just hope someone is counseling this family about staying away from this kind of information for now, maybe forever.

  3. AshleighBrooks says:

    Regardless of whether Melissa was abused, etc… she made a choice to do what she did. No one made her do it. Many people in this world are abused growing up, and they do not rape and/or murder people. I believe even Oprah was abused/molested as a child. Maybe she didn’t get the help she needed, maybe this, maybe that, but it was her decision, no one else’s, to do what she did to Melissa. The police have clearly stated several times that they believe she acted alone and no one else was involved. I truly believe if anyone else were even the slightest bit involved (as an acomplice, etc), they’d have taken them in custody or named them suspects, etc.

    Obviously, we don’t know all the details, but I think the suicide attempts, etc. occurred due to guilt, shame, regret, and probably a whole lot of fear. I have a feeling that she didn’t intend to kill Sandra, but that whatever she did do ended up hurting Sandra and killing her. She doesn’t strike me as being a sociopath only because I think she does feel guilt, regret. and shame. And from the way her friends, family, and ex-husband have all described her, she didn’t have characteristics of a sociopath, but rather of a depressed and unstable, struggling person, which could describe A LOT of people in this world. Her only crimes were shopplifting, and her husband even said she was a “good mom,” and he was very shocked and in disbelief.

    The sad thing is is that families and friends, neighbors and coworkers, often don’t realize or know what the person might do. How many times… time and time again… do you hear someone say, “I never imagined he could do something like this,” or “He was quiet, but I had no idea he would do this.” Obviously, with someone like a hardened criminal or defiant “thug,” you are not surprised, but sometimes crimes/murders are committed by people that you simply would not think capable, and who you really didn’t have reasons to suspect. I think many of the criminals themselves didn’t know they could do what they did, and there isn’t a perfect pattern that fits each criminal and crime.

    I could be wrong, but it’s possible that the death was accidental and happened while Sandra was kidnapped and raped. That’s my theory, at least. Many deaths are “accidental” in that someone hits someone and didn’t mean to kill them, etc. (and often these deaths are “covered up;” in other words, bodies are hidden rather than police called… or a driver leaves the scene of an accident that he caused, etc). It doesn’t mean they are innocent or anything like that. But I don’t that it was a stabbing or something like that, or that she took Sandra to the church with the intent to kill her, but rather some sort of injury occurred as she was kidnapped/raped and it led to her death. Of course, I could be wrong, and I guess we won’t know until the facts are revealed.

  4. NotBuyingInsane says:

    Just a thought. It has been in the comments here that an “instrument” was used to facilitate the rape, and also that the murder weapon was not found. I believe an exacto knife is commonly considered or referred to as an instument. Could MH have been getting rid of the evidence of her crime by swallowing the blade? Adding two additional blades to the mix to use lame suicide attempt as cover up?

  5. NotBuyingInsane says:

    Also, people who are into scrapbooking (as MH has said the suitcase was used for supplies) keep exactos and blades on hand to custom cut paper for their projects. This item would have been on hand at the scene or in the suitcase used for disposal.

  6. sweetpea says:

    I really didn’t want to go here, but I hope to give others an insight to mental illness.

    My ex-husband had mental illness as did many of his siblings. Unforturnately, we got together and had children before his symptons started showing. Both of the children that I had with him have severe mental illness. Most people know that there is a wide variety of mental illnesses. If she suffers from schitsophenia,
    this disorder usually appears between the ages of 15-25 and
    it is very difficult to get any form of help for these individuals. Believe me I went to extreme measures, even calling police, state senators, (you name it) begging for help. Always the same reply “Unless she is a danger to herself or others, there is nothing we can do”. One time my daughter threatened my husband
    her stepfather (whom she truly loves) with a knife and then slit her own wist, he was able to get the knife away from her, subdue her and call 911, an ambulance and sheriff arrived and took her into the hospital. My husband and I were actually grateful. Thinking that we would now get help and she had lived through it.

    Not the case. She was so out of her mind and screaming at the two of us when they took her away, we decided it best to wait until the doctors could sedate her and place her in a mental ward before going to the hospital. We waited about 2 hours. When we arrived no one knew where she was, finally someone informed us that they had sticted up her wist, put her in a cab and sent her away (so much for endanger to herself or others).

    The next day one of her friends brought her home, they were terrified just spending one night with her.

    It was 4 months and 6 visits to the emergency room, before one of the
    doctors finally took pity on us and did a state mental evaluation. She was admitted into a mental facility.

    That was about 4 years ago. She is now living at home again and she has good days and bad. Medications help but are never right.
    The police will tell you “it is not against the law to be crazy”.

    I am not trying to defend Melissa, I am just wondering if when she was ordered by the courts to be under mental supervision, if her doctors put her on medications. There is no magic pill, my daughter went through many different medications and combinations of pills before they kind of got her sane again. Sometimes, these pills can make them violent.

    Also, I read that she filed bancrupcy due to medical bills. What were these medical bills for? Were they for her or her daughter?
    Was she showing signs of mental illness and trying to get help?
    Just a thought.

    As for my other daughter, I don’t even know where she is.

    Sweetpea. My word, I dont even know what to say. I have 2 very close friends with sons that are bi polar, but that is my only exposure and seemingly of no comparative value. I do suspect Huckaby has some serious mental issues that her family is either hiding, or downplaying. Thank you for sharing such a painful experience.

  7. Brenda in Virginia says:

    As far as “LE instructions”…yes and no. Each department has its own limit to what we can tell the general public (due to lawsuits…honest).

    We cannot provide medical advice over the phone in that jurisdiction, nor can officers carry billy clubs…both due to lawsuits targeting the city.

    So, that said…we discuss this type of thing at work, you know, how to we HELP without breaking the rules the city puts on the department? We get around that and one things we simply knew between ourselves was what type of information to provide for those who DO call and ask how to protect themselves, or what to tell children. This was one thing we came up with. (eck, if anyone got bitten and suited the family, they’d have sued US for the advice and God knows we couldn’t have told the info any more. Just how it works.)

  8. JmBrdy says:

    “According to the Tracy Press, three of Huckaby’s friends who did not know each other said that Huckaby told them that she had been raped by a policeman when she was 18 but an investigation cleared the Orange County officer.

    Fox News reported today that Huckaby’s lawyer, public defender Sam Behar, wants Cantu’s body exhumed for a second autopsy because the rape allegation against Huckaby stems from the original autopsy’s finding that Cantu suffered “genital trauma.”

    Judge will rule 4/24 at her arraignment, but there is no way he will grant the exhumation. The pathologist is a neutral party by definition and the autopsy is not even final yet.

    Any word on this Blink? Are they going to exhume this poor girl’s body now? This family just can’t get a moment’s rest can they.

  9. ella says:

    Ive also been a little confised as to why many people insist MH could not have acted alone. Is the perception that women are incapable of sexual violence and murder???
    According to statistics female molestors are rare but I often wonder if they are just under reported. I have friends, siblings who were molested by their step-mother, (the two brothers have since commited suicide), and another friend sexually abused by her babysitter.
    And we all know women are capable of terrible physical and emotional abuse of their own or others children- Ive had alot of experience with some very vicious, cruel women in my life/family.
    Women can and do hurt children all the time.

  10. mom in md says:

    Everyone is outraged over this and they should be, but it will only last until the next story. People who commit these crimes want to blame everything and everyone except themselves. ” I was beat with a belt when I was little” so I’ll beat my child. ” I was locked in a closet when I was small ” so I’ll do it you. ” I was raped by my father, brother, uncle, grandfather, priest, etc. ” you’ll survive. ” ” Feel sorry for me I have mental problems “. Well I don’t. I HAVE NO SYMPATHY FOR ANYONE WHO HURTS A CHILD !!! They are not people they are CREACTURES. Slimey little things that should be squashed under society’s shoe and then scraped off and left in a landfill with the rest of this world’s garbage. And that goes for the dispicible lawyers that defend them. Yeh Yeh I know, everyone is innocent until, well who the hell is innocent. 99% of the people in prison belong there. And as for the other 1% that is there who is truly not guilty, you should be there too, because you must have done something that you didn’t get caught for otherwise the cops would have never come knocking. I know that what I am saying seems a lttle nutty but I am so sick and tired of listening to this bullcrap. If these people were abused as children then they know what its like and how much it hurts. Then why would they do it to another child? That excuse just does not make sense. As adults we are responsible to protect the weak and the true innocent of society, and if we can’t do this then we have failed as humans.

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