Linda Collins’ Murder: How Did She Die? Who Killed Her? Know Everything Here!!

Linda Collins’ Murder: How Did She Die? Who Killed Her? Well, this is the question that is causing people’s minds to whirl these days. So, let’s delve a little deeper into this individual’s life to learn more about who she is and how she died. So, in June 2019, Butch Smith’s worst nightmare came true when he discovered his mother, Linda Collins’ lifeless body, outside her home in the small Arkansas town of Pocahontas. The assassination of the former State Senator sent shockwaves across the country. The Hands of a Killer on Dateline NBC explores the incident, concentrating on the terrible details revealed throughout the inquiry that created serious doubts about Linda’s close circle’s integrity. Do you want to discover more about this case? Let’s get started!

How Did Linda Collins Die?

Linda Collins was born in the Arkansas town of Pocahontas. From 2014 until 2018, the 57-year-old was a member of the Arkansas Senate as a Republican. Prior to that, she served in the Arkansas House of Representatives for a brief period from 2011 to 2013. Linda also served on a number of committees and was the American Legislative Exchange Council’s Arkansas House Chair. Linda commenced her career as a real estate salesperson before purchasing and operating the Days Inn in Arkansas from 2001 to 2016.

Linda was described by colleagues and loved ones as a superb listener and helpful person who was constantly striving for the good of the people. Philip Smith, a former circuit judge who retired in 2017, was her first husband. They have two children: Butch Smith, a son, and Heather Tate Williams, a daughter. In 2018, the couple split, which was followed by a protracted legal struggle over the partition of their financial assets.

Linda Collins’ Murder
Linda Collins’ Murder

Butch and Linda’s father, Benny Collins, decided to check up on her on June 4, 2019, because they hadn’t heard from her in a while. Butch discovered a horrible odour coming from her driveway when he arrived, and after searching, he discovered Linda’s body behind a tarp. Her corpse was decomposing, and she was covered in one of his blankets with her face turned upside down. Butch was so terrified that he contacted the cops.

Her death was thought to be caused by a gunshot wound. This was due to the fact that multiple gunshot wounds had been reported by neighbours a day or two before Linda was discovered. Furthermore, due to the partially decomposed state of the body, which made identification difficult, the date of death could not be determined. Linda had died of many stab wounds, and her body had been forcefully shifted from inside the home to the driveway, according to a later assessment.

Who Killed Linda Collins?

The authorities were perplexed as the investigation into Linda’s murder began because there were few suspects. However, on June 14, 2019, they unexpectedly detained Linda’s close friend and employee, Rebecca O’Donnell, who had previously assisted her in her financial and marketing operations in 2014 and 2018. She was also a witness in Linda and Philip’s divorce proceedings, and her long-time partner Tim Loggains served as the former senator’s power of attorney at one point.


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Rebecca was stopped while travelling to Linda’s memorial service with Tim on the day of her arrest. With charges of capital murder, tampering with physical evidence, and abuse of a corpse, she was held in custody without bond. Rebecca became the lead suspect in her friend’s murder after surveillance footage revealed her messing with the surveillance cameras at Linda’s house. Aside from that, on May 28, 2019, she was the last person to see Linda alive.

Rebecca pleaded not guilty during her arraignment on July 30, 2019, causing prosecutors to seek the death sentence for her. Furthermore, they believed her motivation was based on disguised financial motives. In a surprising turn of events, Rebecca’s earlier charges were amended in mid-January 2020 to include two counts of solicitation to conduct capital murder and solicitation to commit tampering with physical evidence.’


Rebecca attempted to recruit several fellow convicts in prison to murder Philip and make it look like suicide, according to a thorough probable cause document filed by Jackson County officials. She believed he had framed her and that murdering him would help her prove her innocence in court. Rebecca is also accused of ordering the assassination of Judge Harold Erwin and prosecutor Henry Boyce, as well as the destruction of her automobile, which had evidence stored in the Randolph County Jail. According to ABC News, another person on whom she most likely ordered a hit was Philip’s second wife, Mary.

As payment, Rebecca agreed to give them gold and silver coins from Philip’s house. She claimed to be the one in charge of the Days Inn’s books, but Benny had wrongly accused her of money laundering. She then claimed the investigators had a “doctored” video depicting her holding a bloodied knife over Linda’s body and buying bleach, alleging Linda had been stabbed 16 times. Rebecca, on the other hand, insisted that she had not killed Linda and that the knife had been used to roast chicken. When Rebecca Landrum, an inmate, refused to follow her plan, she threatened to kill her.

Linda Collins’ Murder
Linda Collins’ Murder

Rebecca had sold gold and silver coins in three separate transactions in Memphis and Little Rock in 2018, according to online evidence. She had removed them from Linda’s house in exchange for a payment of $15,110. These were the coins that Philip had previously indicated were in Linda’s possession. With all of the evidence against Rebecca in hand, it was determined that she had stabbed Linda to death and dumped her body in the victim’s driveway.


Where is Rebecca O’Donnell Today?

On August 6, 2020, Rebecca O’Donnell accepted a plea deal. She pleaded guilty to murder, tampering with physical evidence, and mistreatment of a corpse, as well as no contest to two counts of solicitation to kill and two counts of solicitation to tamper with physical evidence. “I went to Linda’s residence and purposefully killed her and then hid the body,” she confessed to killing Linda in court. Rebecca was given a 50-year prison sentence.

Rebecca was initially detained at the McPherson Unit Prison in Newport, Arkansas, but was relocated to a secret out-of-state facility in October 2020. Her relocation was cited as a security precaution. Therefore her current whereabouts is unknown to the general public. She is currently imprisoned and will not be released until at least 2070.

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