Milwaukee man accused of beating wife for hours, burning her with cigarettes

Archie Griffin

MILWAUKEE — A 40-year-old Milwaukee man is accused of beating his wife for hours, burning her with cigarettes, and whipping her with a phone cord. Police arrived to a home near 16th and Meinecke on Tuesday, Sept. 25 and found Archie Griffin’s 31-year-old wife dead.

Griffin has been charged with the following:

  •  Mayhem, domestic abuse
  • Aggravated battery, domestic abuse
  • First degree recklessly endangering safety, domestic abuse
  • Bail jumping (two counts)

According to a criminal complaint, on Tuesday, Sept. 25 Griffin called 911 saying he “lost his mind” and his wife was injured after they got into a physical fight.

Officials arrived to the home, and found a 31-year-old woman deceased in a bed.

Investigators observed bruising, lacerations, and bite marks on the woman’s chin, thighs, stomach, shoulders and back. Officials say her injuries were consistent with being whipped. The woman also suffered cigarette burns on her backside, arms and legs. Her lips, cheek and neck had marks that appeared to be from a chemical burn.

Investigators determined the woman had been dead for approximately 10 to 12 hours before Griffin called 911. An autopsy revealed her wounds were in the stages of healing. However, an exact cause of death has not been determined yet.

When officials interviewed Griffin, he stated to investigators he believed his wife was cheating on him, which was the cause of the fight. Griffin said he “lost it” and punched the victim in the head and body approximately 15 times and then strangled her but she never lost consciousness.

Griffin told investigators he kicked the victim in the head, arms and neck about five times before hitting her with a wooden leg from a chair. He admitted to whipping the victim with a phone cord, biting her on both shoulders and burning her with cigarettes on her stomach, vaginal area and other places on her body.

Griffin estimated the beating lasted approximately two hours, but wasn’t exactly sure what day the abuse took place — either Sept. 10 or Sept. 17. Afterward, Griffin said he attempted to nurse her back to health.

After about a week of laying in bed, Griffin said she was able to get up and go to the bathroom and eat some soup but that “stopped after some time.”

Griffin told investigators the victim did not want to go to the hospital and claims she was alive at the time he called 911.

During the 911 call, Griffin stated he “knew he was going into custody.”

This isn’t the first time Griffin has been in trouble. In 1998, Griffin was accused of punching a woman in the chest, pinching her with a pair of pliers, and biting her.

Griffin failed to appear in court for that case, which resulted in warrant being issued for his arrest. He remained a fugitive in that case for approximately 20 years until he was arrested in connection to the death of his wife.