5 Things To Know About Pam Hupp And The Murder Of Betsy Faria

The murder of Betsy Faria gripped Troy, Missouri, when the terminally ill woman was found dead in her home just after Christmas in 2011.

Pamela Hupp is shown in a mug shot wearing an orange prison top. She has blonde hair and is posed against a gray background.

This 2016 photo provided by the St. Charles County, Mo., Prosecuting Attorney’s Office shows Pamela Hupp. The Missouri woman will spend the rest of her life in prison after admitting that prosecutors had evidence to convict her of killing a mentally disabled man in what authorities believe was part of a complicated plot to divert attention from another homicide case.

Photo by: Courtesy of the St. Charles County, Missouri, Prosecuting Attorney’s Office via AP

Courtesy of the St. Charles County, Missouri, Prosecuting Attorney’s Office via AP

Russ Faria had been to a weekly game night with his friends on Dec. 27, 2011, and was horrified to find his wife, Betsy, dead when he returned that night. The details behind the truth—that Betsy had been killed by her friend, Pamela Hupp—turned out to be more twisted and sinister than anyone could imagine.

Police were certain that Betsy’s husband, Russ, had killed her

Russ Faria was at his regular Tuesday game night with friends the day Betsy was killed. Betsy, who was undergoing treatment for terminal breast cancer, had a chemotherapy appointment the day of the murder. Russ had planned to pick her up from her mother’s house afterwards, but instead she let him know that her best friend, Pam, would be taking her home after treatment. Russ returned home that night and called 911 after he found Betsy with a knife sticking out of her neck. Authorities zeroed in on Russ after Pam painted him as an abusive husband who was out to get Betsy’s life insurance money. Russ was wrongfully convicted for Betsy’s murder in 2013 and served more than three years in prison before a judge overturned his conviction.

Betsy and Pam Hupp worked together

The two women met when they worked together at a State Farm office in 2001. Pam had reportedly been fired from other jobs for forging signatures prior to her employment at the State Farm office. Betsy, who was 11 years younger than Pam, struck up an office friendship with the woman, though the two lost touch until news of Betsy’s metastatic cancer diagnosis in 2011. It was then that their friendship rekindled and Pam often drove Betsy to and from her chemotherapy appointments. Hupp reportedly called Betsy her best friend, but in an interview with Fox 2, Russ said Betsy had plenty of other friends with whom she was much closer than Pam.

It took police almost 10 years to charge Pam Hupp in Betsy’s death

Police formally charged Pam with first degree murder and armed criminal action in July 2021. Pam, who was the last person known to see Betsy alive, had apparently stalked her friend’s movements all day and then attacked her with a knife while she was tired after chemotherapy. Pam reportedly worked to make the crime scene look like a domestic violence incident. Pam, who had been named the beneficiary of Betsy’s life insurance policy just four days before her death, received a $150,000 payout.

Betsy was not Pam’s only victim

Pam is currently serving a life sentence for her role in the death of Louis Royce Gumpenberger, a disabled man who police say Pam lured to her home in August 2016 and then shot him with a gun five times as she called police to say he had pulled a knife on her. According to The Washington Post, the murder was part of a larger plot to redirect suspicion about Betsy’s death back onto Russ, who had been aquitted less than a year earlier. Police have also grown suspicious about the death of Betsy’s mother, who reportedly fell through a third floor balcony at her assisted living facility in October 2013, just days before Russ went on trial. Pam was reportedly the beneficiary of her mother’s $500,000 life insurance policy.

Russ was awarded a settlement for his wrongful conviction

The wrongly convicted man was awarded $2 million dollars in a settlement in 2020. Russ sued the officers who arrested him, alleging that they “fabricated evidence” and “failed to investigate the other obvious suspect,” according to People. In July 2021, at the same time Pam was charged in Betsy’s killing, the prosecutor also announced he was launching a criminal investigation into the officers and former prosecutors who handled Betsy’s case. Findings in that query have not yet been made public.

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