NewsCrime and Courts


Body of woman murdered in Billings found in suitcase by teenage son

Posted at 3:12 PM, Mar 06, 2023
and last updated 2023-03-06 17:12:14-05

BILLINGS - Prosecutors say the body of a woman killed inside a Billings residence was found inside a suitcase by her teenage son.

Charging documents filed later Monday against Terrell Lee Spotted Wolf revealed gruesome details about the woman's murder that police first described as a "suspicious death."

Spotted Wolf, 30, was charged Monday afternoon with deliberate homicide during an initial appearance scheduled in Justice Court.

Spotted Wolf is accused of murdering a 48-year-woman prosecutors only identified in court documents by the initials S. L., although family members identified the victim as Susan LaForge.

Prosecutors said the crime first surfaced on Feb. 28 when a teenage boy identified in court records by the single initial "L" called police to report he had found a body in a suitcase inside the family's home on 12th Street West and he feared the body was his mother's.

Officers who arrived at the residence said that during an initial search of the house they located blood stains in a bedroom and observed a large suitcase.

Officers and medical personnel opened the suitcase and found LaForge's body inside.

Three juveniles, including LaForge's teenage son "L", who is 13 or 14 years old, according to court records, were at the residence when officers arrived.

"L" was upset and crying, court records state, and told officers that his mother and her boyfriend, Spotted Wolf had gotten into an argument on Sunday, two days prior to the body being discovered.

During the subsequent investigation, police detectives searched the residence and said they observed LaForge's body "folded into a large suitcase" placed near the garage, which had been converted into a room, court records state.

Blood was located in the master bedroom, where detectives also noted broken shelving and a large broken mirror, court records state. The room also smelled heavily of cleaning products.

Detectives also observed a mop containing blood in the master bedroom, court records state, and they noted a blood trail from the bedroom through the living room and into the kitchen where they found a pair of size 11 shoes with blood on the toe and shoelaces.

Detectives also noted that "furniture and other items appeared to have been moved to cover up some blood stains," court records state.

Detectives also noted they found numerous items in a large garbage bin outside the kitchen entry door, including broken glass, women's jewelry, a clump of black hair, a broken man's watch, a broken gold chain, and a towel with blood stains.

An autopsy determined LaForge suffered blunt force trauma to the arms and head.