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Editorial: Clemmons neighborhood takes big step in leaving nightmare behind
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Editorial: Clemmons neighborhood takes big step in leaving nightmare behind

From the Read more: The Journal's Pazuzu Algarad coverage from beginning to end series
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In the fall of 2014, the discovery of the skeletal remains of two men was plaguing residents along Knob Hill Drive in Clemmons, a normally quiet neighborhood of predominantly older citizens.

We’re glad the neighborhood is finally putting this nightmare behind it.

Pazuzu Algarad, a Satanist, and his girlfriend, Amber Burch, lived at 2749 Knob Hill. Both were charged with first-degree murder and accessory after the fact of first-degree murder in the deaths of Joshua Wetzler and Tommy Dean Welch, whose skeletal remains were found in shallow graves in the backyard. The men, who police say had been shot, vanished in 2009.

A third person, Krystal Matlock, faces a charge of accessory after the fact of first-degree murder.

In the weeks after the charges, residents endured gawkers driving through their neighborhood to peek at Algarad’s house, with its occult markings on the front door.

“Every five minutes, a car stops in the middle of the road in front of the house,” Keith Bryson, who lived across the street from it, told the Journal at the time.

Then there were worries about what would become of the house after Wells Fargo Bank gained possession of it through foreclosure.

“There’s a bad aura to it,” Bryson told the Journal. “Nobody would ever buy the house. But there was that worry that the only person who would buy it would be some nut. When it’s gone, there will be a lot of happy people. It’ll be a good thing when it’s gone.”

The house was demolished in April. Neighbors cheered.

And a few months ago, Stephen and Vicki Brewer, who lived next to the property, purchased the empty lot, the Journal’s Richard Craver reported last week.

The nightmare is receding.

Algarad killed himself in October in prison, where he was awaiting trial. The cases against Burch and Matlock are pending.

But on Knob Hill Drive, things are getting back to normal.

Neighborhoods are prone to luck, good and bad. Many people, bound by money and other pressures, don’t have much choice about where they live. Some land in high-crime areas.

Others can choose the neighborhoods they want and cultivate good neighbors. But even then, things can go terribly wrong, such as what happened on Knob Hill Drive.

We’re glad the nightmare there is receding.

wsjeditorial@wsjournal.com or send letters to the editor at letters @wsjournal.com.

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