BLACK MILLIONAIRE MURDERED:
Lance Herndon (pictured above) was a poor boy made good: he launched a computer consulting company that made him a millionaire; he was awarded a 'National Service Award,' at the White House for his philanthropy. He was also a ladies' man with a sex addiction and three failed marriages behind him. He had a penchant for expensive cars and-light skinned black women.
As a prominent member of black Atlanta's young, wealthy, and powerful set, he was surrounded by the city's beautiful people, whom he wined and dined with finesse. In April of 1996, Lance Herndon, 41, stood beneath a magnificent Baccarat crystal chandelier and greeted his guests, among them the mayor and the district attorney of Atlanta. He was celebrating his forty-first birthday with the creme de la creme of Atlanta's Black elite. Four months later, he'd be dead--viciously bludgeoned in his sleep.
When he failed to show up for work one day, friends and family started to worry. Their concern soon turned to horror when he was found murdered in his own home, in what appeared to be either an act of jealousy-fueled rage or a seedier sex crime. At the time of his death, Herndon had at least three women in his life; each would become a prime suspect in his murder.
One woman is now serving 10 years for killing him-as he slept after they had sex: Dionne Baugh (pictured above), a hot headed Jamaican immigrant, was enraged that Herndon wasn't planning to appear in court to ask for charges against her to be dismissed in an earlier trespassing charge at his home.
On August 5, 2000, a 31-year-old homeless crack addict (pictured above) admitted to strangling five Brooklyn women, adding that images of his mother clouded his mind as he committed the murders. He killed all of his victims on Thursday because it was his mother’s only off day and he didn’t think she deserved to be off-therefore he hated Thursdays.
"The thoughts of my childhood and foster care and mom came into my mind" just before he crushed the life out of Patricia Sullivan, Brooklyn Strangler Vincent Johnson told investigators. "I didn't see strangling her as doing something wrong at the time."
Johnson admitted to killing Sullivan, Rhonda Tucker, Joanne Feliciano, Vivian Caraballo and Laura Nusser. Johnson still hasn't admitting killing Katrina Niles, the sixth woman whom cops believe was part of Johnson's alleged year-long strangulation spree. To date he has been charged with five murders and could face the death penalty.
All six victims had arrest records for prostitution or drug-related offenses and all were found nude or partly clothed. In all of the cases, the women were strangled, apparently with whatever the killer found at hand: two with their own sneaker laces, one with the drawstring from a pair of sweat pants, two with electrical chord and one with a piece of cloth. The first three victims may have had sex with the same man shortly before their deaths. Two where found on rooftops. Three of the victims -- Caballero, Feliciano and Sullivan -- were killed on a Thursday, and a fourth -- Rhonda Tucker -- was found in dead her apartment on a Saturday, but was last seen on a Thursday.
The 5-foot, 3-inch, 130-pound suspect told investigators that Nusser was his first victim, killing her after they had sex in Williamsburg last August. He then wrote out a short apology to Nusser's husband and daughter and pleaded for help. "I'm sorry I did it," he wrote. "I hope this brings closure. I need help."
Cops had initially thought Caraballo, killed August 26, 1999, was the strangler's first victim. DNA from her corpse, as well as DNA from Tucker and Feliciano, matched a DNA sample obtained from Johnson's spit. Police obtained a DNA sample from Johnson after he left the police station and was seen from a window by an interrogating officer spitting in a cup. The officer ran out of the police station and recovered the cup for genetic testing.
Johnson was originally fingered by another homeless man who was suspected of being the killer. The man was cleared because his DNA did not match, but he identified Johnson as a possible suspect and called officers when he saw him crossing the Williamsburg bridge.
Accused killer Paul Durousseau (pictured above) was described by his former Jacksonville neighbors as a lewd womanizer who fought with his wife over his philandering, their finances and his string of jobs.
Durousseau, who at one point was a Duval County school bus driver before becoming a cab driver last year, was charged Tuesday with the slayings of five young Jacksonville women (two of the women were pregnant) between December and February.
The case will go to a grand jury, where prosecutors will seek an indictment allowing them to ask for the death penalty.
Since his arrest in February, Jacksonville police as well as state and federal agencies have built a case using DNA and other forensic evidence against the man police are calling a serial killer.
Durousseau is also charged with killing a sixth woman in Georgia. All were strangled, authorities said.
The family moved to Jacksonville in late 1997 from Fort Benning, Ga., where Durousseau and his wife had been stationed while in the Army. They were married in Las Vegas in 1995, between his enlistments. Neighbors who live in the Washington Heights Apartments complex where Durousseau, his wife and two daughters lived in recent years, said Durousseau would use false names around the complex and made suggestive sexual comments including asking women to do things like make pornographic films with him.
"He always wanted people to 'make flicks' with him," said Nakkia Green, 28. "When you going to make this movie, girl?" he would ask.
Jeff Brooks, who lives in the apartment next door to Durousseau's former unit, said Durousseau was his partner in impromptu card games and the men had an easy relationship, joking, sometimes barbecuing or visiting.
But Brooks, 25, said Durousseau did unsettling things.
"He had a problem with the little women, the young ones," Brooks said.
Once, he and Durousseau were on a job search and driving past the Paxon middle and high schools when Durousseau started to talk to a girl walking by. The girl didn't look like she was more than 14 or 13," Brooks said. "I said 'Get me away from here.' He was trying to pick her up."
Police were called to the apartment off Moncrief Road several times while the family lived there.
In August 1999, police told Durousseau's wife, Natoca, how to seek a domestic violence restraining order after she told them she was slapped and that her husband tried to grab her around the neck in a fight over finances.
The first time she petitioned for protection came a year later, when Durousseau "became violently angry when I told him that I was planning to file for a divorce," she wrote.
The violence was ongoing, she wrote in the 2000 petition, and "I am afraid it will escalate," she said.
The couple worked out the differences and the injunction was never granted.
In March 2001, she sought another injunction. Durousseau had grabbed her neck then and threatened to kill her, she said. Physical fights had been ongoing throughout the marriage, she wrote, and had driven her to a shelter in the past.
Brooks and others remembered the fights.
"You hear everything through these walls," he said. "Him and his wife used to argue about him messing with women all the time."
Others said they were concerned for Durousseau's wife.
"She was a good person. She worked and went to school," said Charlita Green. "She didn't deserve this."
Jobs came and went for Durousseau, who was discharged from the Army in 1997 on the heels of a not-guilty court martial finding on a rape charge and about the same time he was found in possession of stolen goods.
In Jacksonville, Durousseau worked at a variety of jobs, including school bus driver for First Student in August 2001, according to court documents. Company officials did not return calls about Durousseau's job or length of employment as a bus driver.
He was a part-time animal control worker for several months in late 2000 and early 2001 before being fired for not showing up, said Audrey Moran, chief of staff for Mayor John Delaney.
Natoca Durousseau said this week that the two argued and had an often-strained relationship.
"We had issues before, with pushing and shoving," she said. But reconciliation usually prevailed, she said.
A scattered work history and domestic violence weren't the only troubles in Paul Durousseau's life.
In addition to the sexual battery case at Fort Benning, Durousseau pleaded guilty in Jacksonville to sexual battery in July 2001 after a woman said she was grabbed by the hair and had her head beaten against a washing machine before she was raped.
In 2002, he spent several months in jail on a burglary charge before being acquitted by a jury late in the year.
It was after the acquittal that Durousseau took the cab-driving job that became the key in the cases against him.
Two of the victims were linked to the Gator City Taxi job he had between Jan. 9 and Jan. 27 when, a company spokesman said, Durousseau dropped the cab off and walked away.
He was arrested Feb. 6 on a probation violation charge. The prosecutors are seeking the death penalty.
Source: Dana Treen (Union Staff writer)
Black serial killer Donald Lang's (no photo available) case-has got to be one of the strangest in the annals of crime Lang's alleged crimes were not particularly unusual. They would have gone largely unremarked-upon if not for the fact that Lang was totally deaf and mute. Lang was born around 1945 in Chicago. It is believed he lost his hearing at the age of about six months after a high fever and a fall from his baby crib. His family was too poor to afford proper social and educational intervention, so the little boy grew up without any schooling of any kind. He did not even learn American Sign Language or lip reading.
The trouble started one evening in late November of 1965 when a 37-year-old prostitute, Ernestine Williams, was plying her trade in a bar on the South Side. Witnesses saw a young black man who appeared to be deaf approach her, put his hand to her crotch and then hold up ten fingers, as if offering ten dollars. (Donald Lang's work friends had taught him the concept of money and had also introduced him to the practice of hiring hookers.) Ernestine agreed and they left the bar together. She was not seen again till the next morning when she was found stabbed to death in an outdoor stairwell. Donald Lang was quickly identified as the deaf man seen with her at the bar, and he was arrested.
After much legal wrangling, the charge was reduced and Lang was confined to several institutions for the deaf and for the mentally impaired. He was released after a few years and went back to his job on the loading docks. In July of 1972, again on the South Side, Lang was observed checking into a by-the-hour motel with a prostitute named Earline Brown, 39. She would later be found beaten and strangled to death. Lang was sentenced to 25 years to life. Today, at age 62, Lang is now confined to a mental institution. Source: crimezzz.net
Maury Travis (pictured above) was described by neighbors as a polite and pleasant man who took good care of his yard. Little did they know that Travis was slaying drug addicts and prostitutes in St. Louis, Missouri, and neighboring East St. Louis, Illinois. Police were reluctant to admit that a serial killer was responsible for the string of killings (17 victims). His activities had caused barely a ripple even in the cities in which he prowled.
Perhaps because of this lack of attention, Travis decided it was a good idea to point authorities to the decomposing body of an undiscovered victim near West Alton, Missouri, by sending directions to the local paper St. Louis Post-Dispatch, which was later found to have come from Expedia.com and linked to his computer. The woman's body (still unidentified) was found just across a road from where two of Travis' earlier victims were discovered. Unfortunately for Travis he had enclosed an internet-generated map with his typed letter. Police soon traced the map back to the only IP address to download it recently. The user was MSN/maurytravis.
On June 7, 2002, police arrested Travis and began an extensive search of his Ferguson, Missouri, home. Travis told investigators he knew why they had come to get him but made no confessions under this first interrogation. Travis hanged himself in his cell three days later despite being under a suicide watch. Investigators are now left to forge ahead knowing they will get no help from the man who knew exactly what happened to the number of women he killed.
At least the police search turned up a wealth of evidence against Travis. Blood splatters were found throughout Travis' home and belts and ligatures discovered were also smeared with blood. The most damaging evidence was video tapes that searchers found hidden inside a wall. The tapes documented Travis engaged in bondage and rough, sadistic sex with women and what appeared to be two killings. Only one woman on the tapes, Betty James, has been identified. She has been found murdered, though it is not shown on the tapes. Travis' basement had been modified into a kind of sadistic torture chamber and was likely where several women took their last breath.
Bill Torphy from the “Atlanta Journal-Constitution” wrote a fascinating piece on the Wayne Williams (1st photo) case, as follows: Sidney Dorsey (2nd photo) the former DeKalb County sheriff is currently confined to an isolation cell. Dorsey was convicted in 2002 and sentenced to life for allegedly ordering the murder of Derwin Brown, the man who defeated him for sheriff. Dorsey continues to proclaim his innocence.
The news that former partner (now police chief) Louis Graham had reopened five of the Atlanta Child murders cases-which Wayne Williams was convicted of makes Dorsey happy.
When Dorsey and Graham were partners and investigating the Williams case, they never believed that Williams committed the murders, even the two he was convicted of. Dorsey says, “Wayne Williams was the perfect suspect, perfect fall guy.” Many in the black community speculated that the killings were the work of the Ku Klux Klan or even a cop.
Twenty-four years ago, Dorsey said he entered Williams home with a search warrant for the carpet used to convict Williams. From the beginning, Dorsey had doubts about the fibers collected that day. He said, back at the crime lab, a technician told him, “Those fibers are flying everywhere.” Dorsey says, “Those fibers weren’t as unique as prosecutors purported them to be.” The fibers used to convict Wayne Williams even showed up on an investigator’s sport coat.
In 1986, Williams’ father, Homer, told Dorsey that an unknown woman repeatedly called Wayne wanting to meet with him to get into the record industry; claiming she had a voice like Aretha Franklin. Williams, a budding music promoter couldn’t bypass this opportunity. The woman gave him directions, which included, crossing the Chattahoochee bridge; when Williams crossed the bridge, cops heard a splash and a body was discovered. Williams was arrested, despite the fact that his car never stopped on the bridge. The woman who called has never been identified.
Dorsey said, he too, received a similar strange phone call in 2001 when he was being investigated for Derwin Brown’s murder. The call, Dorsey claims, came from an insistent woman who contacted his private security firm. The woman, he said, was worried that her husband, a recovering drug addict, might slip off to buy drugs. She wanted Dorsey to trail him.
The woman wanted to meet him one night in Marietta, Dorsey said. But she sounded suspicious, he said. Her story didn’t add up. “I didn’t go, it was similar to Wayne Williams-they lured him out to Cobb County. But I didn’t go.”
Dorsey adds, “I identify with Wayne Williams. We are two men, framed for murder and in prison for life.
Sidebar: The murders of young black men continued after Williams was convicted. Oddly, this wasn’t reported in local or national media outlets. Also, a Georgia judge has ordered DNA testing of evidence used in the trial of Wayne Williams, who was accused of killing 29 blacks, mostly boys, in the Atlanta Child Killings case of 1979 and 1981. Attorneys for Williams argued that such DNA testing was not available when Williams was tried in 1982.
A former Penn State defensive lineman was recently arrested in the killing of a student who was stabbed 93 times last spring.
LaVon Chisley, 23, (pictured above) of Waldorf, Md., was arrested after arriving at the Centre County courthouse for a hearing related to the murder investigation. He had been considered a "person of interest" in the case for months.
Chisley was arraigned in district court on charges of first-and third-degree murder in the death of Langston Carraway, said Patton Township Police Chief John Petrick. He was sent to jail without bail.
Chisley was booted off the Penn State football team before the 2005 season because of poor grades. After starting nine games in 2003, Chisley was mainly a reserve in 2004.
The body of Carraway, 26, a senior in labor and industrial relations, was discovered inside his State College apartment on June 5. Why would Chisley murder his best friend Carraway-by stabbing and slashing him with knives 93 times and trying to make the crime scene look like a hate crime? On the wall near his body was the word ‘Ni**ger’ smeared in his blood!
Centre County District Attorney Michael Madeira and police are working on an answer to that question and believe robbery may be a motive for the homicide.
If robbery is established as a motive, Chisley, who maintains his innocence, could face the death penalty if the Commonwealth chooses to make his a capital case.
Chisley, who was arrested and charged with first- and third-degree murder Tuesday, last played defensive end for the Penn State football team in 2004 before he was declared academically ineligible in August 2005. The following year, Chisley was an NFL prospect with a few sports agents; however, he was never drafted.
Madeira said money was fronted to Chisley "in anticipation of him making the NFL draft, which he, of course, did not."
"That's the whole idea of the motive ... is that he realized 'I wasn't going to make it to the NFL, so I've gotta repay these debts somehow,' " he added.
The search warrant lists a number of parties authorities believe Chisley is indebted to, including sports agents, a dog breeder, a tattoo artist, an ex-girlfriend, a roommate and Centre County for various fines. The money being claimed as unpaid by these parties adds up to about $51,475, according to court documents.
Carraway was last seen alive by one of his brothers at 8 p.m. June 3 at his residence, 110 Northbrook Lane, where he was later found dead, according to court documents. Prior to that, at 3 p.m., he was seen buying wine at the Wine and Spirits Shop on North Atherton Street, police said. The criminal complaint indicates the murder happened between 8 p.m. June 3 and 6:30 a.m. June 4.
The complaint states Carraway was wearing a diamond watch and carrying a wad of cash about 1 1/2 to 2 inches thick at the shop. Carraway's brother and his girlfriend confirmed to police that a JoJo diamond watch, valued between $500 and $1,500, was Carraway's. Madeira said police did not recover the watch or the cash.
Another indication that robbery may have been a driving factor in the crime was blood on the doorknobs upstairs, implicating the killer might have been searching the apartment for money or valuables, Madeira said. The murder occurred downstairs, he said and Chisley's DNA was found at the scene. Blood matching Carraway's was also allegedly found in Chisley's car. Source: "The Daily Collegian."
A prominent businessman (pictured above) was arrested last week for impersonating his mistress and posting an ad on the Internet requesting someone abduct and rape her.
On Feb. 26, an unidentified woman notified the New Canaan Police Department that someone posing as her posted an explicit personal ad to an adult Internet Web site. When the woman guided investigators to the Web site, they were stunned by what they found.
The Web site was Collarme.com, a bondage and fetish site that hosts personal ads and offers users the ability to chat and communicate with one another. According to the Web site's homepage, the site is "the largest BDSM community on the planet." This is the same site that wife-murderer, Woody Woodring, used when searching for a mistress.
When investigators viewed the ad, they were shocked to discover that it not only contained the woman's photograph and personal contact information, but it also listed her home and work addresses, motor vehicle license plate number and information on which train she takes to work everyday. The premise of the ad was even more surprising. According to police, the ad said the woman wanted to be "kidnapped and raped" as part of a sex fantasy. The ad also dictated that the respondent not make contact beforehand because it "would ruin the fantasy."
"We acted on it as quickly and as urgently as we could to protect the safety of the victim," Lt. David Bender told the Associated Press on Tuesday. "We felt she was in grave danger."
What exactly led authorities to the suspect is not yet known; however, on March 2, the New Canaan Police Department arrested Albert W. Hsu. The following day, the police department issued the following press release:
On March 2, 2007 officers went to Hsu's home and arrested Hsu without incident. A search warrant had also been obtained and was executed shortly after Hsu was taken into custody. Source: Crime Library
The girls (two young sisters) and three friends were driving to the local theater to see the film, "The Bourne Supremacy," suddenly, oncoming headlights loomed into their lane, forcing their car into a ditch and their lives into the unfathomable. Quadriplegics both -- 19-year-old Shannon Deering, once a scholarship-quality fastball player, now in a wheelchair for life; and 16-year-old sister, Erica (pictured above), a petite redhead with an infectious smile, also wheelchair-bound.
"The last thing I remember were those car lights coming towards us," Erica says. "And then waking up in hospital two weeks later and not knowing where I was, or even what had happened. Would I ever walk again? I asked. "No, they said. At that point, all I could do was cry." Durham Regional Police had called Tony Deering's home in Port Perry at a little past midnight on that August night last summer. His two daughters' beds were empty.
"There's been a serious accident," the cop's voice said. By then, Erica Deering was already at Sunnybrook hospital, having been airlifted there after being flung through the sun roof of her sister Shannon's 2002 Pontiac Grand Am -- her recently acquired pride and joy, treated like a baby, washed every day -- having been pulled out of that car's centre back seatbelt by the sheer force of ramming into a country culvert. Older sister Shannon, behind the wheel when the front tire accidentally slipped off the pavement in the swerve to dodge the oncoming car, home after attending Florida's Broward County Community College on a fastball scholarship, was en route to Sunnybrook from Oshawa General. Both sisters were paralyzed from the neck down.
Three other kids were in the car. Alex Heroux, Amanda Davey and Ceri Boosma, all then 17. They were the lucky ones. In early March, the town of Port Perry got together and held a fundraiser for the Deering girls. It came in the form of a women's hockey game, one that featured Canadian Olympic women's hockey gold medalist, Cheryl Pounder. They sold ads for the program, and hyped it in the local weekly. In the end, they packed the Scugog Arena. One of the players on the ice that day was Ceri Boosma, one of the five in Shannon Deering's car the night of the accident. More than $25,000 was raised. It is Saturday in the Deering's newly rented Port Perry house. The girls are finally home. But it was a long haul.
After 10 weeks at Sunnybrook, they had to spend the next five-plus months undergoing intensive therapy at Toronto's Lynhurst Centre -- learning to get the most out of what was left, learning how to be the best quadriplegic that a quadriplegic could possibly be. As for the Bourne Supremacy, well, the girls have yet to see the movie they had set out to watch eight months ago. But they have the DVD. "We will watch it one night soon," Shannon says. "All five who were in the car that night. "We're all going to watch it together." Source: Mark Bonokoski @ The Toronto Sun
FEMALE KINGPIN/HUMAN TRAFFICKER:
Despite being 21, Ermira Hatija (pictured above) headed a multi-million dollar Ecstasy trafficking ring based in Detroit, Michigan.
Authorities also believe that Hatija has been involved in human trafficking along the Canadian-US border. Hatija first came onto the police radar in 2003, when police say that she arranged for a 13-year-old-boy and his mother to cross the Canadian-US border on a Wave Runner. According to investigators, the young boy fell off and drowned, and the mother was subsequently arrested by the Coast Guard.
Allegedly, when Hatija went to collect her money for trafficking the boy and mother, the person who hired her refused to pay up because of the drowned boy. Authorities say Hatija severely beat up the associate, and Canadian police arrested her for assault. But without enough evidence to hold her for the death of the young boy, she was released and returned to the US. But her business through the northern border wasn't over.
It was in December 2005 that authorities arrested two couriers attempting to smuggle 14,000 tablets of Ecstasy from Canada into the US. Investigators determined that the Ecstasy was going to Hatija. In April 2006, police arrested Hatija at her apartment in Wixom, Michigan. However, she was granted bond and then disappeared. Police believe that Hatija may be in New York or Albania.
Recently, after 10 days of deliberations, a jury found two young men (reported gang bangers) guilty today in the 2003 shooting of a pregnant woman on a crowded Orange Line train that killed her unborn baby boy.
Chimezie Akara, 23, and Andre Green, 22 (pictured above) were both charged with firing an errant bullet that struck Hawa Barry in the stomach on Feb. 5, 2003 when she was 8 1/2 month pregnant. Barry survived, but her baby died 45 minutes after being delivered by Cesarean section at Boston Medical Center.
A Suffolk Superior Court jury, which began deliberating on March 13, found both men guilty of first-degree murder.
At trial, prosecutor David Meier alleged that the two men acted together when they fired a military-style semiautomatic handgun at another man inside a crowded subway train and missed their target. They hit Barry and almost struck another man, whose guitar stopped a second bullet. Meier said surveillance video played for the jury showed the two men fleeing the rear of the train, where they opened fire.
Source: Boston Globe
*Warning: The following story is extremely graphic and very disturbing.
TORTURE & BONDAGE PSYCHOPATH:
Gary Michael Heidnik was an criminal who kidnapped women and kept them prisoner in his basement. He is often referred to as a serial killer, although having committed only two murders, he would not fit the standard FBI definition of a serial killer. FBI standard dictates "three or more murders" to classify as serial killer.
Heidnik used a mail-order bride service to meet his future wife, who he corresponded with by mail for two years before proposing to her. Betty arrived from the Philippines in September 1985 and married Heidnik in Maryland on October 3, 1985. The marriage rapidly deteriorated and she found Heidnik in bed with three other women and forced her to have sex with them. He beat and raped her until she left him three months later. A child was conceived from their brief marriage.
Heidnik signed his mentally retarded girlfriend's sister out of a mental institution on day leave and kept her prisoner in a locked storage room in his basement in 1978. After she was found and returned to the hospital, examination revealed that she had been raped and sodomized. Heidnik was arrested and charged with kidnapping, rape, unlawful restraint, false imprisonment, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse and interfering with the custody of a committed person. The case went to trial in November 1978; he was found guilty and sentenced to three years jail.
Beginning in November 1986, Heidnik abducted six women and held them in the basement of his house in Philadelphia. The captives were sexually abused, beaten and tortured in front of each other, and forced to beat each other with a shovel so that they wouldn't gang up on him. He used electric shock as a form of torture; one victim was electrocuted when she was bound in chains, thrown in a filled bathtub, and house current was applied to the chains. Heidnik dismembered her body, ground it in a food processor and mixed it with dog food, which he then fed to the surviving victims. He had a problem dealing with the arms and legs, so he put them in a freezer and marked them "dog food." He cooked her ribs in an oven and boiled her head in a pot on the stove.
Several weeks later, another of the women died of starvation.
Heidnik would torture and sexually abuse the women individually or in groups. He dug a four-foot-deep pit that he would throw a "misbehaving" victim in. The pit would then be covered with plywood and heavy weights. The victims were also encouraged to inform on each other in return for better conditions.
One of the kidnapped women escaped on March 24, 1987. She had convinced Heidnik to let her go out, promising to bring back another captive for him, but instead she went straight to the authorities who secured a search warrant. Heidnik was arrested. At his arraignment, Heidnik claimed that the women were already in the house when he moved in. During his trial, Heidnik repeatedly denied all allegations of mistreatment of his captives, and claimed that Sandra Lindsay was killed by the other captives for being a lesbian. Before his execution, Heidnik reportedly went on a tirade, claiming that he wanted to be executed because the execution of an innocent man would stop the death penalty in America.
Convicted of two counts of murder in 1988, Heidnik was sentenced to death and incarcerated at the State Correctional Institution at Pittsburgh. In January 1999 he attempted suicide with an overdose of prescribed thorazine. Heidnik was executed by lethal injection on July 6, 1999.
"KIDNAPPERS & MILLION DOLLAR KIDNAPPING RINGS"
The man suspected of abducting a woman from her Riverside home on Wednesday and holding her in a box had detailed plans to commit at least 15 more kidnappings for ransom across Southern California, Riverside police said Friday.
Mark Herbert Warren, 47, a contractor, (pictured above) of Victorville, kept the woman in a lightproof and soundproof custom-built crate, complete with its own ventilation system, in his van for seven hours until a sheriff's deputy freed her, according to police Detective Rick Cobb. Also in the van was a stun gun, a shower curtain, a blue tarp and the extensive personal data on other potential targets.
"I've never seen anything this extravagant," Riverside police Detective Rick Cobb says Friday of a handmade, padded crate (pictured above) in a van where a 57-year-old woman was held captive earlier this week. Mark Herbert Warren, 47, is accused of kidnapping her from her home.
Sophisticated and high tech kidnapping rings operate discreetly in this country. There is no publicity or statistics on these rings because the victims don’t report the crime to the authorities. They target wealthy families, usually a family going through marital difficulty. They kidnap children, demand a multi-million dollar ransom to be paid within 24 hours and they return the children safely with the threat, ‘if you go to the police, we will kidnap your child again.’ During the kidnapping, whomever-is assigned to watch the child is called every 45 minutes by the ringleader, if the ringleader misses a call, the captor assumes the ringleader is in jail and kills the child. We have been informed by a source, that one of these rings is still operating and has committed eight family related kidnappings with no end in sight.
Parts of Mexico have become notorious for kidnapping rich tourists and holding them for ransom. In extreme cases, the victim’s ear or fingers are cut off and sent to their loved ones with a ransom demand. This crime continues to affect tourism in Mexico.
Two Colorado teens (pictured above) have been arrested after the mother of one of them was found stabbed to death in the trunk of her car.
Investigators allege that Linda Damm's body had been in the car for nearly a month as her daughter and friends tried but failed to get rid of it. On one attempt, police said they buried the body at the edge of a cemetery only to retrieve it later, fearing the grave was too shallow.
Investigators claim 15-year-old Tess Damm and her live-in boyfriend were planning to drive to Wyoming to make a third attempt, when police received an anonymous tip. The two teens are being held without bail. They are being prosecuted as adults in connection with the woman's killing. Two other teens have been arrested in the case, but only one has been charged.
The family of Linda Damm held a private memorial service Friday afternoon outside the woman's home, but her daughter was unable to attend.
A Boulder district judge on Thursday denied a motion by Damm's guardian that she be released from the Platte Valley Detention Center in Weld County in order to attend the funeral.
The family had offered to pay for the sheriff's deputies who would have had to accompany the girl while she was attending the service.
Helen said in the statement that her family wants everyone involved in the crime to be held accountable, but they plan to support Tess.
"We want Tess to know that we love her," said Helen, who took Tess in last summer.
Tess Damm's boyfriend, Bryan Grove, 17, and his friend Jared Guy, 18, have also been charged in the homicide. A fourth teen is under arrest but has not been formally charged.
Grove is charged with first-degree murder, conspiracy and tampering with evidence. He is being held in adult confinement at the Boulder County Jail and has been on and off suicide watch.
Tess Damm is charged with conspiracy to commit murder, tampering with evidence and being an accessory to a crime. Guy faces the same accessory and tampering charges. Police allege he and Grove attempted to dispose of the body twice, once in a landfill and the second time by burying it in a cemetery.
A police affidavit alleges that Guy also watched the body as it decomposed because he was taking a police forensics class that dealt with the stages bodies go through after death.
Guy told a Longmont Times-Call reporter on Wednesday that he's not the bad person being portrayed in the press.
"I have seen the news and stuff, and they are not portraying me as I really am," he told the reporter. "They are portraying me as this really bad kid, and I am really not."
According to the ‘National Examiner,’ since 1971, nearly 30 women and girls between the ages of 12 to mid-20’s have mysteriously vanished along an infamous stretch of Interstate-45 between Houston and Galveston in Texas.
About 25 of the missing females bodies were found, either whole or in parts, dumped everywhere from parks to bayous and even Galveston Bay. Many of the victims were raped. Most died from gunshot wounds while others were beaten or strangled to death. At least two were decapitated or dismembered.
The majority of the cases can be linked to the work of a single man. The killer has yet to be apprehended.
LOS ANGELES SERIAL KILLER:
LOS ANGELES, California (AP) -- DNA evidence ties a rapist to the murders of 10 women and an unborn fetus, a prosecutor told jurors Tuesday in the trial's opening statements.
Chester D. Turner, 40, (above) faces the death penalty if convicted of the murders, which spanned an 11-year period.
He also is accused of the special circumstances of multiple murder and murder committed during rape.
Deputy District Attorney Bobby Grace said Turner was finally caught after he was arrested in 2002 for raping a woman in Los Angeles. His DNA was submitted to cold-case investigators and "like water from a faucet" each unsolved murder was linked to Turner, Grace told the jury.
The defense deferred its opening statement.
The women were killed between 1987 and 1998. In October 2004, Turner was charged with 11 counts of murder and the special-circumstance allegations. He has pleaded not guilty.
Police allege Turner accosted most of his victims in crime-plagued South Los Angeles and raped and strangled them before dumping their bodies.
His defense is expected to claim that he was a drug dealer whose customers were mainly prostitutes who often paid in trade. That, they say, would account for the DNA evidence.
The killing of one woman was recorded on a grainy security camera videotape, but Turner's lawyer has said the footage is so rough that it is impossible to identify the victim or assailant.
Turner is already serving an eight-year prison sentence in the 2002 rape case.
Before police identified Turner as a suspect, a mentally disabled janitor was wrongly convicted of three other slayings police believe are connected to Turner. Turner has not been charged with those murders.
David Allen Jones, 44, was released in March 2004, after spending 11 years in prison. Jones received $720,000 in compensation for his false conviction and long prison sentence.
Jonathan P. Luna (pictured above) was a Baltimore-based Assistant United States Attorney who was stabbed 36 times with his own penknife and found drowned in a creek in Pennsylvania.
Luna grew up in the projects in the South Bronx near Yankee Stadium. He was of African-American and Filipino ancestry. He was a graduate of Fordham University and the law school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He worked at Arnold & Porter in Washington, DC in 1993–1994 and the Federal Trade Commission in 1994–1997. He worked as a prosecutor in Brooklyn before moving to Baltimore. He was married to an obstetrician and had two children. He was 38 years old when he died.
Before his murder, Luna was scheduled to take a polygraph test concerning $36,000 which disappeared from a bank robbery case that he had prosecuted.
At the crime scene, authorities noticed that Luna did not have the expected substantial defense wounds on his hands.
Luna also had a credit card (with a $25,000 debt), which his wife, Angela, did not know about and his name was on an Internet dating site.
Luna left his glasses, which he needed to drive, and his cell phone on his desk. He had called defense attorneys earlier in the night saying he would fax over documents that night but they never arrived. The pool of blood in the back seat would suggest Luna was in back and someone else was driving.
In early February 2007, a private investigator and an attorney, both hired by Luna's family, filed a petition for a writ of mandamus in order to force the Lancaster County coroner to conduct an inquest into Luna's death, after an earlier request was declined. This murder remains unsolved despite a $100,000 reward being offered, leading to the capture and conviction of the killer.
Sisters, Barbara Grimes, 13, and Patricia Grimes, 15, (no photos available) were big Elvis fans. On December 28, 1956, they left their house and were headed to the Brighton Theater to watch Elvis' movie Love me Tender. Brighton Theater was a short distance from their house. In their pockets they had $2.15, but it is unknown how they arrived at the theater (whether they took the bus or walked).
They were seen in the popcorn line of the theater at around 9:30 pm. The movie was over at around 11 p.m., and they were expected home around 11:45 pm. At 2:15 p.m., the two sisters were reported missing by their mother.
Their disappearance launched one of the biggest missing-persons manhunts in Chicago history.
In a statement, Elvis Presley asked the girls to come home.
On January 22, 1957, a construction worker named Leonard Prescott found the Grimes sisters. Their naked bodies were discarded next to the German Church Road near Willow Springs.
At the crime scene, pictured above, Barbara Grimes lay on her left side with her legs slightly drawn up toward her body. Patricia Grimes lay on her back and her head was turned sharply to the right.
The autopsy, performed by experienced pathologists, earned much criticism. They concluded that the Grimes sisters died on December 28, the day they vanished, and the cause of death was due to shock and exposure to low temperatures. The cause of death was only determined by excluding all other possibilities.
However, Harry Glos, one of the chief investigators in the case, believed that the Grimes sisters were still alive when their bodies were discarded next to the German Church Road. He stated that the thin ice layer on the bodies of the girls indicated that their bodies must still have been warm when they were dumped there. Only after January 7, 1957 would there have been enough snowfall to create the ice layer. Therefore, according to this theory, the Grimes sisters must have been alive until January 7.
Also, the corpses contained various bruises and marks (for example puncture wounds in the chest that may have come from an ice pick) that were never fully explained. Glos has also theorized that Barbara Grimes was sexually molested before she was killed. Although the pathologists denied this claim, the Chicago police crime lab confirmed Glos' theory.
This case still remains unsolved, 51 years after the crime.
Robert Charles Browne (above) is a self-avowed woman hater. He hated the ground women walked on and felt they were only good for three things, “cooking, sex, and giving birth,” other than that, they were a total waste of time. He was often overheard complaining about women, often referring to them as b**ches and scum of the earth. He once told a friend, “Some people hate minorities but I hate women with a passion.” Browne decided to act on his hatred. Yet, despite his hatred for women, a few of his victims were men.
Robert Charles Browne (born c.1953) is a serial killer currently serving a life sentence in Colorado. Browne was born in Coushatta, Louisiana. He was a high school dropout who joined the Army and served from 1969 to 1976, when he was dishonorably discharged for drug abuse.
In a confession, authorities say Browne admitted to murdering up to 49 women in a period spanning from 1970 until he was arrested and put in prison in 1995. Browne instigated the new investigation by sending a cryptic letter to the authorities in 2000. The letter read "Seven sacred virgins entombed side by side, those less worthy are scattered wide, the score is you 1, the other team 48.”
The letter included a hand drawn map with outlines of Colorado, Washington, California, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Arkansas and Mississippi, with the body count written inside each state. Browne claims he murdered seven people in Texas, nine in Colorado, 17 in Louisiana, three in Mississippi, five in Arkansas, 2 each for California, Oklahoma and New Mexico with a single victim in Washington state. If true, his claims would put him as the most prolific serial killer in United States history, surpassing the Green River Killer (Gary Leon Ridgway) who, in 2003, became the nation's deadliest known serial killer after admitting to 48 murders (although the Green River Killer boasts to have killed up to 71 people, only 48 of the murders have been conclusively linked to him). Browne was arrested in 1995 on charges of murdering Heather Dawn Church in 1995.
On July 27, 2006, he pleaded guilty to first-degree murder in the death of Rocio Delpilar Sperry, who was killed at the age of 15 on November 10, 1987, at a Colorado Springs apartment complex.
FEMALE SERIAL KILLER:
Dana Sue Gray (above) is a former surgical nurse who had a need for money and an obsession for extravagant shopping sprees. She murdered several women and used their assets to get her hair done and buy thousands of dollars of merchandise.
After the vicious murder (of retiree June Roberts). Less than an hour later; Roberts Cadillac was parked in front of Bally's Wine Country Cafe in Temecula, where June Roberts's killer puffed cigarettes and charged the crab cake and scampi to Roberts's credit card. It was too much to eat, so the waiter packed the rest to go.
The next stop was an eyebrow wax and a perm for herself. Signing the $164.76 charge "June Roberts," she told the stylist she was on a "shopping spree." She spent $511 on a black suede jacket and several pairs of cowboy boots, $161 on a pair of diamond drop earrings--all charged to Roberts. Heading home, she swung by a drugstore and picked up dog treats and two bottles of Smirnoff.
By the time Riverside County Police caught up with Dana Sue Gray, she had garroted and bludgeoned to death a number of elderly women, then gone on binges with their credit cards. "I had," she said later, "this overwhelming need to shop after each murder.”
Ten days later, Dorinda Hawkins, 57, was strangled while working at an antiques store in Lake Elsinore and left for dead. But she survived and gave officers a description of a blonde, wavy-haired female attacker. Within the week, 87-year-old Dora Beebe in nearby Sun City, another golf mecca for retirees, was strangled and beaten to death with a household iron.
The outcry over the murder was enough for Riverside County sheriff Cois Byrd to show up in person at the crime scene, hoping to quell the fear among his older constituents.
Finding the suspect didn't take long. Earlier in the day of the Beebe killing, a police task force, acting on a tip, had been following a woman on what looked like routine errands to the bank, drugstore and supermarket. The cops were watching her unload shopping bags from the trunk of her Cadillac when they learned of Beebe's death--and suddenly realized they had been following her killer on another of her post-murder spending sprees.
During a search of Gray’s home, police found Beebe's credit cards in her lingerie drawer; a closet full of new clothes, tags still attached; boxes of Nike Air athletic shoes; a purple boogie board; a $1,000 Trek mountain bike; and unopened bottles of Opium perfume. The items were spread out as if in a post-Christmas quandary of where to store all the presents. "It looked like Bullock's," one officer said. Gray was handcuffed and put into a police cruiser, still wearing the diamond earrings purchased with Roberts's credit card.
There have only been 36 documented female serial killers in this century.
Source: Crime Shots.
BLACK FEMALE SERIAL KILLERS:
A female serial killer is an elusive and rare creature, especially a black female serial killer. Marie Dean Arrington, (pictured above, black woman on the far right) killed two victims in 1964/1968. She shot her husband and killed another female, she also kidnapped someone to extort her son's release from prison. Arrington was the first black woman to make the FBI’s Most Wanted list. She was sentenced to 20 years for manslaughter in 1965, condemned in 1969, and then her sentence was commuted to life in 1972.
Also, Patricia Jackson, (no photo available) of Tuscaloosa, AL., killed two victims in 1966. She slashed her boyfriend with a razor, and then stabbed a female bartender. She received 12 years for second degree murder in 1966, she was paroled in 1970. Condemned in 1981, her sentence was commuted to life on appeal.
BLACK MYSTERIES IN HISTORY:
The end of the 19th century saw the beginnings of a new type of crime; the modern serial killer. While some consider Jack the Ripper the first modern serial killer, the events in Austin Texas preceded him by almost 3 years and proved to be just as brutal.
The first victim, Molly Smith (above) was found on New Years Eve in 1884, Smith was a black servant girl found outside her home, raped and violently murdered. Over the months more murders occurred and the papers of the era had a field day coining the term “the servant girl annihilator.”
By the end of September there had been 5 victims, all black servant girls who lived behind the homes of their employers. Citizens discussed forming vigilante groups to keep watch and the local Marshall invited a team of detectives from Houston to help with the case. As a result several local black men were arrested and subjected to brutal interrogation methods before being released. While the white populace was concerned they felt somewhat protected by the fact that the killer had never attacked a white woman. That fact was to soon change.
On Christmas Eve, 1885, the killer struck again, brutally raping and mutilating the bodies of 2 well to do white women, Sue Hancock and Eula Phillips. Local papers announced these new developments with such headlines as “BLOOD, BLOOD, BLOOD!” and “The Demons Have Transferred Their Thirst For Blood To White Women!” These new attacks coupled with the newspapers stirred up such fear that some now spoke of the attacker as a supernatural being. Firearms were sold in number, the governor offered a reward, and bars were forced to close at midnight. “Moonlight Towers” of steel with bright spotlights were erected around town in an effort to provide safety.
Because of these precautions, or some other unknown factor, the killings abruptly stopped almost a year to the date that they had begun. Over the decades several suspects have been brought forward under different theories but to this day the case have never been solved.
HOLLYWOOD HILLS, June 8 – A man was charged with murder and held without bail after allegedly fatally shooting his girlfriend on Tuesday, June 5th. The charges of the case are odd as both the victim’s body and the murder weapon remain missing.
Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney, Cathryn Brougham, charged David Mahler, a 43-year-old attorney, with the May 27 killing of Kristin ‘Chrissie’ Franya Baldwin, 38. Brougham said that Mahler is also charged with assault with a firearm on Donald Van Develde, a roommate in Mahler’s multi-level Hollywood Hills home on Cole Crest Drive.
Mahler pleaded not guilty to both charges at his June 5 arraignment and was denied bail. Brougham said the special circumstances and the serious nature of his crime warranted the denial of bail and stressed the possibility that the defendant could destroy evidence if he was released.
According to witnesses, Baldwin and Mahler were arguing when Mahler allegedly shot and killed her. The witnesses – whom the district attorney’s office will not identify – said Mahler disposed of the body and attempted to clean up the crime scene.
Witnesses waited several days before alerting police officials of the incident. Detectives stated that fear for their lives caused the delay in reporting the incident.
Despite evidence at the scene, the police hunt for the murder weapon and Baldwin’s body continues. Baldwin is described as a Caucasian woman in her late thirties with blond hair and green eyes, five feet four inches tall and 120 pounds.
At the hearing, Mahler’s Defense Attorney, Michael T. Melo said, “We don’t even know that this woman is really dead? What is the evidence she’s dead?”
Brougham told the court: “We have two witnesses who provided information that the defendant did in fact kill this woman in his room. We also have evidence from the defendant himself where he indicated on more than one occasion that he knows where the body is and gun is.”
Mahler remains in custody at the Foltz Criminal Justice Center. His bail review hearing is June 12 and preliminary hearing date is June 15. If Mahler is convicted, he could face up to 50 years to life in prison.
Source: Canyon News
Hugh Christopher Newsom, Jr., 23, and Channon Gail Christian, 21, were a couple from Knoxville, Tennessee. They were murdered and, according to a Tennessee grand jury, both the man and woman were raped after being kidnapped early on the morning of January 7, 2007. Their vehicle had been carjacked.
Five suspects have been arrested and charged in the case. The grand jury indicted four of the suspects on counts of murder, robbery, kidnapping, rape and theft, while one final suspect faces federal charges as accessory after the fact to carjacking.
According to news reports, Christian and Newsom had gone on a date at a local restaurant on Saturday, January 6, 2007, but did not return home. During their night out, the couple was "hijacked, bound and blindfolded and taken back to Lemaricus Devall 'Slim' Davidson's rented house on Chipman Street."
Christian's parents found her abandoned Toyota 4-Runner two blocks away from the Chipman Street house on Monday, with the help of her mobile phone provider. An envelope recovered from the vehicle yielded fingerprint evidence that led police to Lemaricus Davidson and 2316 Chipman Street. When police went to the address on Tuesday, January 9, One of the suspects, Vanessa Coleman, later told police that "she witnessed Christian's mouth being cleaned with a bottle of some type of cleaner," in an attempt to remove DNA evidence. Coleman also said that she had seen "clothes that were stained with blood and smelled of gas being put in the washing machine at the house." Newsom was shot three times, "his body wrapped in a blanket, set afire and dumped alongside nearby railroad tracks." He had also been anally raped.
The national news media was initially criticized by some for not giving the crime adequate coverage because the victims were white, and the suspects black, but some commentators have explained that "as bad as this crime is, the apparent absence of any interest group involvement or any other 'angle' might also explain the lack of coverage." This criticism was also fueled by erroneous reports of dismemberment, mutilations, and the duration of Christian's rapes allegedly committed by the suspects, especially in early reports. Most of the original reports were later denied by the District Attorney.
Police Chief Sterling Owen IV said that there is no indication the crimes were racially motivated, and that the murders and assault "appears to have been a random violent act.""There is absolutely no proof of a hate crime," said John Gill, special counsel to Knox County District Atty. Randy Nichols. "We know from our investigation that the people charged in this case were friends with white people, socialized with white people, dated white people. So not only is there no evidence of any racial animus, there's evidence to the contrary." Some commentators, including Newsom's parents, disagree, claiming that such a crime would require a motive of racial hate.
Christian moved from Louisiana to Tennessee with her family in 1997. She was a graduate of Farragut High School and a senior majoring in sociology at the University of Tennessee. On January 12 her family released a statement to thank the Knoxville community "for all their prayers and everything." A candlelight vigil was held on the university campus January 25, 2007 in her honor. Newsom, a former baseball player for the Halls High School Red Devils, graduated in 2002. He was interred at Woodhaven Memorial Gardens.
A cop removes evidence yesterday from Brigitte Harris' apartment, above.
She lured her stepfather to a Queens apartment, then handcuffed, asphyxiated and sexually mutilated him - all to settle a horrific score from two decades ago, sources said.
Cops investigating the twisted slaying of Eric Goodridge, 55, believe stepdaughter Brigitte Harris, 26, cut off his penis to exact revenge for alleged sex abuse when she was a girl, law enforcement officials said yesterday.
Harris, who called herself the Original Dark Angel and Lady Vengeance, left chilling notes in her Rockaways apartment accusing Goodridge of abuse and justifying her crime, sources said.
"He wrecked my life," read one note found near her stepfather's body Saturday. "At first, I blamed myself. Now I know it's not my fault," another said.
"She planned this - it was premeditated," a law enforcement source said. "In her mind, it was justified vengeance."
Police recovered a bloody knife and caught up with Harris after she checked herself into a mental hospital and ranted incoherently about the slaying.
Goodridge, an emigrant from the West African nation of Liberia, had arrests for reckless endangerment in 1978 and menacing in 1982, but no details were available.
Harris was born in 1981.
Police said Harris sent e-mails to Goodridge to lure him to her apartment. Then she handcuffed him to a chair, gagged him with duct tape and throttled him until he died, authorities said.
He was already dead when she cut off his penis, officials said, noting there would have been much more blood if he had been alive when it was severed.
"This is a homicide that had meaning and reason," said one source. "It is like a movie, let me tell you."
The cause of death was "homicidal violence, including gagging and neck compression," according to a medical examiner's spokeswoman.
Goodridge lived in Staten Island when he was married to Harris' mom. He later married another woman, who died five years ago.
That woman's mother defended Goodridge yesterday as a decent dad to his other children, who are now orphaned.
She acknowledged hearing rumors that Goodridge had abused Harris - but she didn't think it was true.
"I would die if I could believe that," said his former mother-in-law. "He wouldn't pay child support, but I wouldn't believe that."
But a former brother-in-law said he had also heard of the sex abuse claims long before Goodridge's shocking death.
"It stands to reason if someone pulls a Lorena Bobbitt, there's a good reason," he said.
Harris has twice made criminal complaints against her stepsister Carleen Goodridge, once for grand larceny and once for assault.
Carleen Goodridge said she couldn't talk about the dark family secrets behind the slaying.
"It will all come out," she said outside her home in Staten Island.
The family arranged for a lawyer to represent Harris, but the lawyer told the Daily News he had not spoken with her yet.
The relatives said Goodridge told them he worked for the government of Liberia, but a diplomat at Liberia's Mission to the United Nations said she had never heard of him.
BLACK SERIAL KILLER: (THE STOCKING STRANGLER)
Soon after Carlton Gary (above) moved to Albany, two elderly white woman were beaten, raped, and strangled. One died, the other survived.
Carlton Gary moved to Syracuse after getting out of prison in 1976, two more elderly white woman were attacked, raped and strangled in their homes. One died, the other survived. Both attacks occurred within four days of each other. The two survivors were not able to identify Gary positively as the crimes occurred in the dark; at least one victim was sure that her attacker was a black male, and she was strangled with a scarf. Gary was never charged for any of these crimes. He was sent back to prison for a parole violation after he was caught trying to sell coins stolen from the same apartment building as one of the surviving Syracuse victims. Gary escaped from the low security prison and made it back to Columbus, Georgia.
Gary raped and/or murdered seven elderly woman between 1977-78 in Columbus. Known as the "Stocking Strangler," he was convicted of beating, sexually assaulting and strangling his victims, mostly by using stockings. Two of the survivors testified that he strangled them into unconsciousness before raping or, attempting to rape them. The one Georgia survivor, positively identified him as her attacker in court. Sometimes Carlton Gary would just attack and kill his victims, as is the case in his strangulation murder of the director of the Education Division of the Columbus Health Department. His standard modus operandi was to rape and murder his victims. Gary's oldest victim was 10 days from her 90th birthday, his youngest victim was 55 years old.
His fingerprints were found at four of the crime scenes. All of his victims were white, elderly woman who lived alone. He also robbed banks and restaurants in and around Georgia. During an attempted robbery of a South Carolina restaurant, a female employee stated that his gun wasn't loaded, he fled the restaurant and was apprehended. Gary was indicted for the murders on May 5, 1984, convicted on August 26, 1986 and sentenced to death the following day. He is currently on Georgia's death row awaiting a final appeal.
"Hit Man: A Technical Manual for Independent Contractors," is a book written under the pseudonym Rex Feral and published by Paladin Press in 1983.
The book was written by a Florida woman.
The book portrays itself as a 'how-to manual' on starting a career as a hit man, fulfilling contracts, but contains no factual information suitable for actual use to anyone wanting to enter the murder-for-hire business. Similar to 'Hit Man 101 Manual.'
Existing copies at Paladin Press were destroyed, after the book was found to be used as a guide during a triple murder in 1993 (see below). "Reason Magazine," estimates there are 20,000 copies of the book in existence.
In 1993, a triple murder was committed in Montgomery County, Maryland by a man who claimed to have used the book as his guide, he followed each step in the book.
James Perry (1st photo) who had been previously imprisoned for violent crime, was caught, convicted and sentenced to death.
He had been hired by Lawrence T. Horn, Motown's former chief recording engineer from 1964-1967. Horn previously worked with the Jackson 5, The Four Tops and Diana Ross.
Horn's motive was to inherit the $1.7 million dollar settlement his ex-wife Mildred won from a medical malpractice suit that left their son Trevor confined to a wheelchair.
Horn ordered Perry to kill his ex-wife and his disabled son. Perry broke into Mildred's home and slaughtered everyone in sight, including Trevor's nurse.
The families of Mildred Horn, her son Trevor and her nurse Janice Saunders sued Paladin Press, the publisher of the book, saying Paladin Press "aided and abetted" the murder. The suit, Rice vs. Paladin Press, claimed that Paladin Press had a share of responsibility in the murders by virtue of their publication of a book that, by Paladin's own admission, could be used by criminals and would-be criminals in the solicitation, planning, and commission of murder for hire.
In November 1997, a U.S. appeals court ruled 3-0 that Hit Man was not protected by the free speech/free press clause of the First Amendment and thus Paladin Enterprises could be held liable for a triple murder committed by one of its readers.
On May 21, 1999, Paladin Press' insurance company settled the case, giving the families of those killed by the hit man several million dollars, while also agreeing to destroy the remaining 700 copies of the book in their possession, and surrendering any rights they have to publish and reproduce the work. However, the families were not entirely successful in stifling the book. With the surrender of the publishing rights by Paladin Press, the book was illegally published on the Internet at Overthrow.com in its entirety on May 22, 1999. The book is not in the public domain, and all copyrights remain with the anonymous author — even an author who declines to distribute his or her works does not lose the exclusive right to do so.
Lawrence Horn was sentenced to life in prison.
The book was also cited as a source of information in a similar crime committed by Robert Vaughn Jones in 1999.
Once again, the publisher of a technical manual for hit men settled a lawsuit filed by a woman who fought off a hired killer who used the book as a guide.
Bobbi Joe Wilson sought at least $4.5 million in damages from Paladin Press of Boulder, Colo., in a lawsuit filed in federal court in Eugene in September 2000.
The case began in 1998 while Wilson and her husband, Robert Leslie Goggin, 29, were getting a divorce. Goggin hired Robert Vaughn Jones, also 29, to murder his wife in exchange for $100,000 from her life insurance policy.
Goggin and Jones each were sentenced in 1999 to 17 1/2 years in prison for the attack.
In court, Jones testified that Goggin recruited him to kill Wilson. Jones said he then purchased "Hit Man: A Technical Manual for Independent Contractors," published by Paladin Enterprises.
In her lawsuit, Wilson outlined two dozen points of advice from the book that Jones followed to the letter in planning to kill her.
The advice covered such points as disposing of evidence, creating a disguise, selecting weapons and avoiding conviction if caught, according to court records in the case.
"OLYMPIC HOPEFUL MURDERS MARRIED BOYFRIEND"
LaToyonda Promise Mose, above, was a sprinter at San Diego State, she had a bright athletic future ahead of her and was an Olympic hopeful until she stabbed her married boyfriend, killing him in a fit of rage.
Mose claims, she had met him at a hardware store, over time, he showed violent tenancies trashing her apartment on numerous occasions, he also had a domestic violence history with his wife.
She claims they got into a argument on the evening of the murder.
Mose was forced to accept a plea bargain to voluntary manslaughter and one strike according to the District Attorney. "I say forced because the day after she accepted the plea bargain."
Lucy Wiesmantle was quoted in the San Diego Union-Tribune as saying, “the reason we offered her the manslaughter deal was, based on evidence we discovered, her claim of self-defense was likely true." If that is so, then, why was she being threatened with prosecution for murder?
Mose was sentenced to probation and one year in jail. Her plea bargain allowed for a possible withdrawal of the felony charge and plead guilty to a misdemeanor thereby removing the felony from her record.
A condition of that sentence was anger management classes for one year; enrollment in school, graduate and find gainful employment.
Latoyonda Promise Mose has since graduated with a Masters Degree in Counseling. Mose has completed her required anger management classes and recently was accepted as an Intern at a local university.
SUSPECT IN MICHIGAN SERIAL MURDERS:
Last week investigators announced 27-year-old Matthew "Chilly" Emmanuel Macon, who has been in prison off and on since 2001, is a suspect in at least five unsolved murders that occurred this summer in mid-Michigan. He is also being looked at as a possible suspect in a sixth murder from 2004.
Police arrested Macon last Tuesday on suspicion of not reporting to his parole officer and not registering as a sex offender. He also had an outstanding warrant for breaking and entering. Macon has an extensive criminal history, including two sex offenses, larceny and unlawfully driving an automobile. Investigators have not yet provided details on what evidence they have connecting Macon to the murder cases, but they have noted similarities between Macon and a description given to them by a witness.
The most recent killings began on July 26; one month after Macon was paroled for his third larceny conviction. On that day 76-year-old Ruth Hallman was attacked in her West Lapeer Street home. Her injuries were fatal and she died three days later at a local hospital.
Less than two weeks later, on August 7, 2007, police found the body of 36-year-old Deborah Kaye Cooke under a tree in an east side park. Police have released few details on her murder, saying only that she was physically assaulted.
Two days after Deborah's murder police responded to a 911 call at 1017 North Washington Avenue. Upon arrival police found the body of 46-year-old Debra Renfors. As with the previous case, police would not release any information about how the victim was killed.
On August 27, a relative of 64-year-old Sandra Eichorn found her body on the floor of her South Genesee Drive home. Police confirmed the victim was murdered but would not comment on a cause of death.
Following Sandra's murder Alley announced the forming of a joint task force, made up of Lansing Police, the FBI and Michigan State Police. Alley said the task force was going to look for connections between Sandra's murder and other recent unsolved homicides.
Before police could finish connecting the dots on the murder cases they were called to the scene of another attack. On August 28, a 56-year-old woman was assaulted in her Jones Street home. A man who claimed to be looking for work entered the back door of her house and struck her on the head. Luckily her dog was able to scare off the attacker. The victim, who has not been identified, provided police with a description of the suspect.
The final attack came just one day later. On August 29, a group of prospective property investors discovered 41-year-old Karen Delgado-Yates barely alive in a vacant home at 1115 Hickory Street. An ambulance quickly transported Karen to Sparrow Hospital, but she died enroute.
"I am confident we have the right person in custody," Lansing police Chief Mark Alley said during a news conference, describing Macon as a "serial killer."
Source: David Lohr
"BLACK CELEBRITY ASSISTANT BRUTALLY MURDERS BOSS."
We all heard about Linda Stein's brutal murder. Her black assistant (Natavia Lowery) was recently arrested for the murder. Lowery allegedly bludgeoned Stein to death because Stein kept yelling at her.
Stein was the former manager of the group the Ramones. After retiring from that gig, she became a high powered real estate agent. Her clients included: Steven Spielberg, Michael Douglas, Calvin Klein, Elton John, Angelina Jolie and Sting.
Stein is believed to have met Lowery when the young lady worked for a public relations agency in New York. Unbeknownst to Stein, Lowery had a record for identity theft and petty larceny.
Lowery constantly told friends that Stein often belittled her and yelled at her constantly and according to Lowery, after Stein used a "slur" directed towards her, she allegedly lost it and snapped, killing Stein.
Natavia Lowery photo: NY Daily News
"BLACK SUPREMACIST SERIAL MURDER RING"
J.C.X. Simon (first photo) is one of four people convicted in the "Zebra," killings-a series of attacks on whites by blacks in San Francisco in 1973. Simon is scheduled for a parole hearing today. Update: Simon was denied parole.
Black Death Squad:
From 1973 until 1974, at least 16 people were killed by the Zebra killers. Some of the victims were shot in the back in broad daylight, leaving them paralyzed. One victim was shot as she did laundry in front of numerous witnesses.
The Zebra murders were the work of the Death Angels, a group within the black Muslim group, the Nation of Islam.
While the Zebra killings were officially solved, some members of the Zebra task force suspected that up to 71 murders in California could have been the work of various Death squads. Since many victims were drawn from the ranks of the homeless or hitchhikers, there is no certainty about the actual numbers. Today the murders have been largely forgotten — even within San Francisco — despite the enormity of the crimes when they happened and the great effect they had on the city.
"The man (above) featured in this disturbing story, fought long and hard to keep gays out of his sea scout organization yet he is now charged with allegedly molesting several boys in this same organization."
BERKELEY -- A longtime Sea Scouts leader arrested on suspicion of molesting boys was the lead plaintiff in a lawsuit challenging Berkeley's decision to end the group's rent-free berthing because of the Boy Scout bans on gays and atheists.
Eugene Austin Evans, 64, above, of Kensington was arrested Tuesday for allegedly abusing four current or former Sea Scout members on his boat, the SSS Farallon, over the past several years, said Berkeley police Sgt. Mary Kusmiss.
Evans, who has been the Farallon's skipper for 35 years, is being held in lieu of $1 million bail on six felony counts of sexual assault, including allegations of lewd and lascivious acts with a minor, oral copulation with a minor, penetration with a foreign object of a minor and showing harmful material to minors, police said.
Evans retired several years ago as a teacher at Encinal High School in Alameda, Kusmiss said.
The Sea Scouts is a Boy Scout affiliate and youth program that enjoyed rent-free berthing at the Berkeley Marina for 60 years. In 1998, the city determined that the Boy Scouts' bans on gays and atheists violated the city's funding standards and told the Sea Scouts to pay rent.
Last year, the California Supreme Court ruled unanimously that the city was within its rights to end the rent break. The U.S. Supreme Court rejected the Sea Scouts' appeal.
Supporters of the Berkeley Sea Scouts organization and Evans have insisted that neither was anti-gay.
Source: Henry Lee @ The SF Chronicle
"LESBIAN TRIANGLE ALMOST TURNS DEADLY FOR BEST-SELLING AUTHOR"
June 23, 1996: Eugene Bennett, (no photo available) a former agent for the F.B.I. abducted Alva Clever, a Manassas, Virginia pastor, at gunpoint. Bennett then had Clever lure Margo Bennett (Bennett's spouse) to the Prince of Peace United Methodist Church. Bennett, whose face has been concealed by ski mask, binds Clever to a chair until Margo Bennett, a former FBI agent herself, gets there. Bennett had also attached a bag containing explosives around the minister's waist and put a bag over his head.
Margo, noting the intentionally suspicious content of Clever's phone call, arrives and confronts Eugene Bennett. After dousing him with pepper spray, she ducks into an office where she fires a shot at her husband from behind a desk. The shot misses. Bennett, armed with a .45, continues to taunt his wife.
Bennett tells his wife of the explosives tied to Clever, warning her that they could all perish should she choose not to communicate with him. Margo stayed behind the desk. She was able to call authorities from the office, prompting Bennett to leave the scene.
Eugene Bennett was later arrested at his residence after a short standoff with law enforcement. It seemed Bennett had to restrain "Ed" in his garage before he could give himself up. Ed was Bennett's alter-ego, an evil replication that Bennett claimed took over during periods of mental blackout.
After Bennett was apprehended, a pipe bomb was discovered outside the church. Police also found a bomb in a locker kept by Bennett at Northern Virginia Community College. Margo Bennett was employed as a police supervisor at the Woodbridge, VA school. Even more explosive components were discovered at the school's Annandale campus.
This incident was not the first act of violence involving Eugene Bennett. In 1993, prior to a fraud trial against Bennett, a similar incident occurred. Bennett attacked his wife with a stun gun, then tied her up. He warned her that her children would be killed if she testified against him. He held her for several days until the trial started.
So what we have is man who has no problem with kidnapping. A person who claims to have blackouts and an evil alter-ego. A person trained by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. A person who --has a strong hatred for lesbians.
Yes, Bennett blamed his wife's romantic involvement with Patricia Cornwell, above, a Virginia author, (who is only second in sales to J.K. Rowling) for his marital problems. Bennett claimed that his wife would "secretly meet with Cornwell for romantic candlelight dinners, would visit Cornwell's Richmond home, accepted expensive gifts and clothes from her and spoke with her on the phone constantly." He said the couple would often meet at a gay bar near Quantico. Bennett said that, while laughing at him ``Mrs. Bennett admitted the affair" and "asked Mr. Bennett why it took him so long to figure things out.'' He worried that his children would be "brought up by lesbians". Bennett blamed the affair for leading him into insanity. He claims to have found lingerie and sexual toys in her vehicle. He said his wife called him a "square." Bennett trailed Margo to Richmond and "observed Mrs. Bennett and Ms. Cornwell hugging and kissing in their vehicles'' So he hooks a bomb up to her minister, threatens her with a gun, claiming all the while he was insane and Ed was the guilty one. This was a man who claimed to have lost his sanity because of lesbians. A person who claims to black out and do things that he cannot recall later; a sort of Jekyll & Hyde situation.
Bennett was sentenced to 23 years in prison.
Patricia Cornwell wed Dr. Staci Gruber in 2005 in Massachusetts, which permits same-sex marriages. Dr. Gruber is a Medical School psychiatry professor at Harvard University.
"TWO SERIAL KILLERS OPERATING IN CHICAGO (TARGETING GAYS)"
Although a serial killer on the South Side of Chicago is receiving press for killing two gay men.
There is another serial killer on the North Side-who is targeting less obvious "downlow" males who are doctors, lawyers or businessmen.
Allegedly, these men used the services of gay call boys. People connected to the victims in this case, refuse to talk about their personal lives.
For some reason, this case isn't generating the press like the first case mentioned.
“TRANSGENDER LOVE TRIANGLE TURNS DEADLY” (FROM OUR NEWSLETTER)
When Portland police responded to a disturbance call in the 5700 block of North Kerby Avenue on May 4, 2007, they discovered something far worse than the reports of someone in need of assistance...what they found was a murder scene.
Cops arrived at the apartment of Frank Johnson and found the 51-year-old dead inside. They later determined that Johnson had died from blunt force trauma to the head.
Not at the scene was authorities' main suspect, 48-year-old David Wayne French, (above). French had been Johnson’s transgendered roommate (alleged live-in lover) for the past five years. Detectives believe that it was an argument over the pair's living arrangements that lead to the murder. They would later find out that Johnson planned to leave French for another transvestite and now-cops think French exploded when Johnson informed him and reacted by killing him.
Furthermore, police claim, as they were forcing open the front door, French was making his getaway by leaping out of the apartment's third story window. It is not known if French was hurt in the jump.
Authorities say that an arrest warrant has been issued for French who is described as transgender, 5'6", 130 lbs., with shoulder length brown hair. French also goes by the alias Zalia Crizta or simply "Z.” Cops has also learned that French maintained an internet business and made a living as a self-proclaimed psychic offering spiritual and metaphysical guidance.
Portland police believe that French has left the Portland area and may be on the run somewhere along the West Coast.
Less than two weeks after notorious transgender murderer David Wayne French was profiled on TV, he was caught in Rapid City after a bus station employee recognized French from a flyer that local law enforcement had passed around the city. French, also known by the alias Zalia Crizta, is expected to be extradited back to Portland where he will face charges for the death of his "roommate."
"PEOPLE MAGAZINE'S MOST ELIGIBLE BACHELOR ACCUSED OF SERIAL RAPES"
Gary Zerola's dark, brooding good looks earned him a spot on People magazines list of America's "Most Eligible Bachelors," and a tryout for the reality TV show "The Bachelor."
But authorities say Zerola has a dark side as a rapist who preys on young women. He currently awaits back-to-back trials in Boston on charges he attacked two 19-year-olds in 2004 and 2006. He also faces charges in Florida, where authorities say he force-fed drugs to an 18-year-old women, then raped her in Miami Beach hotel in October while free on bail in the Boston assaults.
Prosecutors say Zerola met all three women in bars, charmed them, then attacked them when they refused to have sex. In the 2006 case, he allegedly took the woman shopping at Neiman-Marcus, where he bought her a $700 dress and $250 shoes before trying to rape her in her Boston apartment.
Zerola, 36, attended Suffolk University, where he earned degrees in law and public administration.
He was regularly mentioned in newspaper gossip columns and fetched an $800 bid in a charity dating auction. In 2001, at age 29, Zerola was named one of People's 50 most eligible bachelors.
Zerola denied having sex with his accusers but refused to submit to a DNA test.
Meanwhile, his law license has been suspended. On his web site, he's described as a highly regarded speaker and legal commentator who appeared on "Power Of Attorney," and "Judge Hatchett."
BI-SEXUAL SERIAL KILLER:
Russian bi-sexual serial killer Andrei Chikatilo liked boys and girls, so he targeted both: He raped, murdered and ate parts of at least 21 boys, 17 women and 14 girls between December 1978 and his capture in November 1990. He was executed in February 1994.
"BLACK CHEERLEADER MURDER"
UNION, S.C. -- A college football player and wife have been charged with killing a 16-year-old Union County High School student whose body was found Saturday in the Broad River.
Investigators said that Marisha Jeter was stabbed in the neck before her body was dumped in the river.
Jeter's body was found by art students taking pictures of the river on Saturday afternoon.
Police said the teen, who was a popular cheerleader at her high school, left her home about 9:30 p.m. Thursday, saying she was going to a fast-food restaurant.
The Union Public Safety Department said that Pernell Clayton Thompson, 20, and Yolanda Dee Thompson, 19, had asked Jeter to meet them near the Union YMCA on Thursday night.
Union Public Safety Chief Sam White said that investigators believe Jeter knew both of the Thompsons and had a prior relationship with Pernell Thompson. Police said Thompson's wife did not like him maintaining contact with Jeter.
During the meeting on Thursday, investigators said that Jeter was killed and her body was taken to the bridge over the Broad River that connects Union and Chester counties and dumped in the water.
Investigators said that Jeter's car was then driven several miles into Chester County, where it was set on fire.
"The man had married in the summer and there seems to be some hard feelings,” White said. “We feel like that may have more than likely lead to the jealousy."
Officers said that the Thompsons had talked with Jeter's family about some problems.
Pernell Thompson has been a football player at Wingate University for the past three seasons. Wingate University is located 35 miles east of Charlotte, N.C. Thompson was a wide receiver for the past three seasons. He was named to the all-state team in his senior season at Jonesville High School and he made the all-state academic team three years in a row.
Police said that the Thompsons have a child together.
Police were investigating the possibility that Jeter was pregnant, but an autopsy ruled that out.
Investigators said when Jeter disappeared, her family told the police about the Thompsons.
Marisha was the daughter of Manning Jeter, a former trustee on the Union County School Board.
Jeter's father said, "People have sick minds. Some people don't know how to turn around walk off and let go and leave people be and my baby is a victim of that."
The Thompsons are charged with killing Jeter. They are being held at the Union County Jail. Police said neither of them have a criminal record.
"For someone to just mutilate my baby the way that they did, I can’t understand it. Can’t comprehend it," Manning Jeter said. "The life of a loving person has been lost for nonsense."
The school day Monday at Union County High School began with a moment of silence in remembrance of Jeter.
Besides being a cheerleader at the school, Jeter was also a student leader and band member.
Friends said that Jeter, who was a junior, was also talented singer who was extremely well-liked and popular at the high school.
Union County High School Principal Joe Walker said that counseling will be available at the school on Monday for grieving students.
Walker said, "Kids just want to talk to somebody. They're not looking for answers today as much as they are just to talk to somebody and share the feelings they're having -- try to get them through that -- so they've got somebody to talk to and just relay the message we're here for them and we're going to support them."
Counselors, ministers and psychologists will be at the school to meet with students in "safe rooms" to offer comfort and counseling.
Walker said, "It's just a terrible tragedy for us -- just a young vibrant life we've lost -- it's a relationship. I don't look forward to thinking about the next couple days, but I am glad I got to share my time with her."
The school is planning a memorial later in the week.
San Francisco police said Monday that a "personal beef" likely prompted two gunmen in dark hooded sweatshirts to stalk and kill Terrell Rogers, (above) an anti-violence activist gunned down outside his daughter's high school basketball game while taking what relatives described as his usual halftime cigarette break.
Family members said they were devastated that Rogers' children - Tierra, a junior guard who has been rated as one of the top 11th-grade basketball players in the country, and Terrell Jr., a middle-schooler - lost their father in a manner similar to the way Rogers lost his own dad at age 8.
On New Year's Day in 1977, Adam Rogers' body was found near Candlestick Park. He had been tortured and then stuffed face-first into a sleeping bag. The lead headline in the San Francisco Examiner read, "Black activist slain, dumped near Bay."
A witness at Adam Rogers' murder trial said he was targeted by a female suspect because she believed - rightly or wrongly - that he had set her up for a robbery. He was tied to a chair and injected with a mix of heroin, garlic powder, bleach and lye and later was beaten with a hammer and strangled with an extension cord, the witness said.
A man and a woman were convicted of first-degree murder.
HOUSTON (KTRK) -- A Houston police officer (above) will spend her second anniversary on the force behind bars. She's accused of betraying her badge -- trading drugs for cash.
A Houston police officer sworn to uphold the law, Traci Tennarse, 29, is now accused of breaking it. She was arrested at a local motel by HPD SWAT officers, along with a 19-year-old woman and a 58-year-old man believed to be Tennarse's boyfriend. Police busted Tennarse after they say she delivered 50 pounds of marijuana to an undercover informant in exchange for $17,000.
Anna Emmons, the Harris County Assistant District Attorney handling the case, said, "It would be a little bit smaller than the size of a bale of hay."
Emmons says Wednesday night's arrest inside room #230 was the culmination of a three month investigation. Police tell Eyewitness News the department's internal affairs division began watching Tennarse back in October, after receiving a tip that she was dealing and selling drugs.
William Bonin (above) was a convicted homosexual child molester who earned the nickname 'The Freeway Killer,' in the late 70's and early 90's by prowling highways in Orange County, Calif., in a van, picking up young men for sadistic and deviate pleasure and then strangling them to death. Bonin was executed in February 1996 for 10 counts of murder, but not before admitting to killing 21 gays overall.
Source: National Examiner
"SERIAL KILLER GRAVEYARD"
A baffling mystery in Fort Myers, Fla. began simply, with the discovery of a human skull by a land surveyor. While walking along a five-acre parcel of land in a wooded forest near Rockfill and Arcadia Streets in Fort Myers, the surveyor stumbled across what he first thought was the head of a small animal. Upon closer examination, the surveyor -- who was working for a local real estate developer -- realized the skull was human and called 9-1-1.
That was on March 23, 2007. By sunset that night, Fort Myers police recovered the bones from nearly eight complete bodies with the help of area agencies, cadaver dogs and forensic experts.
It was a grim recovery. Fort Myers detectives found themselves wondering, how did eight people come to die in a wooded area just three miles east of downtown?
After a thorough examination of the remains, forensic evidence indicated that all eight were men ranging from 18 to 49 years old. They learned that seven of the eight men had first-rate dental care. One of the men was believed to have been homeless or had a rough life based on bone damage and poor dental care. Experts said that the men known as the "Fort Myers Eight" were found within 50 yards of one another, and had been killed between 1980 and 2000.
The most popular theory among law enforcement: A serial killer is at work (although he hasn't struck since 2000) and someone stumbled upon his personal graveyard.
From all appearances, it was a completely unprovoked attack.
Surveillance video taken at a Miami Gardens Citgo gas station January 20, 2007 shows people and cars coming and going. It's a busy Saturday night. And soon for several people, it's the night they'll witness a murder.
That night, 20-year-old college student Datrell Rawls (2nd photo) made a quick stop at a cell phone store next to the gas station. As he got back into his car, police say surveillance video shows 21-year-old Jelmo "Skeebo" Kirkland, (1st photo) run over to a friend, Mercury Morris Duncan, who was standing next to a pickup. The two have some sort of exchange, then investigators say Kirkland ran towards Rawls' car with a gun and opened fire as Rawls pulled away.
Police say the video shows Kirkland then run away from the gas station. Rawls drove around the corner of the gas station, wounded and bleeding badly, in an apparent attempt to get to the police substation. He got out of his car and collapsed. He was declared dead at the hospital. Police say just days earlier, Rawls had enrolled in college.
Motive For The Murder: Detectives say Kirkland and Rawls had encountered each other two weeks earlier at a Chuckie E. Cheese birthday party and Kirkland didn't like the way Rawls looked at him at the party.
Boy's Donated Organs Lead To Cancer In Four Recipients
Tuesday April 8, 2008
This is a terrible story that starts with a tragedy and ends in an equally sad way. It centres around a boy name Alex Koehne, a teen who was diagnosed with bacterial meningitis and apparently died from the disease in March of last year.
His parents made the decision to donate his organs to others as a way of paying tribute to their lost son. It was a generous and agonizing moment, but they knew they were doing the right thing. "I immediately said, 'Let's do it'," Jim Koehne recalls. "We both thought it was a great idea. This is who Alex was."
The operations were performed in New York City and grateful donors accepted Alex's vital organs, giving them the chance at a life he would forever be denied. It should have had a happy ending.
It turns out the teen didn't die from the ailment doctors thought had killed him. He'd had a rare form of lymphoma instead, and now his organs have caused others to develop the dangerous ailment.
A 52-year-old recipient who received his liver died four months after getting the new organ. The cause: lymphoma. A 36-year-old woman who gratefully accepted the pancreas suffered the same disease and succumbed. And two patients who took Alex's kidneys have now had them removed and are fighting their own life and death struggle against the cancer.
How could such a thing happen? The New York State Health Department has ruled no one was to blame, because all of Alex's symptoms fit the textbook descriptions of meningitis and that's what doctors treated him for. It wasn't until after his organs had been harvested and reused and an autopsy performed that the truth became clear.
And by then, it was too late.
"Our jaws dropped," Koehne remembers. "We walked out of there crying."
Experts say the chances of this kind of thing happening are extremely rare. There have only been 64 cases ever recorded out of the 230,000 studied by the United Network for Organ Sharing.
Even doctors are stunned by the tragedy. "A 15-year-old boy's organs are a gift from the Almighty," transplant surgeon Lewis Teperman notes. "Usually the organs from a 15-year-old are perfect. In this case, they weren't." His hospital, New York University Medical Center, performed two of the transplants.
Alex received antibiotics that should have stopped the spread of infection to his organs - but that was only for the meningitis. They do nothing for cancer, and no one knew he had it at the time. Teperman's study admits "a more thorough evaluation of the donor" should be done when there is even the slightest hint of doubt.
"Tumors, especially lymphoma, can masquerade as other causes of death, and may be missed in potential donors," his report makes clear.
"No one was able to say they could have figured out that this diagnosis was lymphoma," the physician concludes. "We are recommending that if the reported case is bacterial meningitis, maybe wait and get more cultures, possibly don't take the organs."
He wants to make it clear this kind of incident shouldn't scare people away from either donating or receiving needed organs. He calls it a rare case and insists it's very unlikely to happen again, especially now that the hospitals involved have revamped and tightened their screening processes.
And what of Alex's parents, who now have to live not only with his death but the effect on four other families? They've hired an attorney and are considering legal action, but have so far not sued anyone. For now, they're trying to keep their boy's memory alive in a different way, starting a foundation to fund cancer research in his name.
And they say despite the outcome, they have no problems with organ donation. "We would absolutely, positively do it again," Jim Koehne agrees. "I haven't done it yet, but I am definitely going to sign up myself."
Photo courtesy: Alex's Promise
"SERIAL KILLER RING, SEX TRAFFICKING, BLACK MARKET BODY PARTS & PEDOPHILIA"
The film "Bordertown," tells the "true" story of the numerous women murdered in Ciudad Juárez. Newspaper reports indicate that nearly 500 women, mainly girls have gone missing or been murdered.
Allegedly, the real number of missing and murdered women is over 6,000. It's speculated that an serial killer ring, a sex trafficking network and a black market body part syndicate is operating in this small town.
Women are abducted every day at random, to be sexually abused, sold to the highest bidder or to be killed for their organs.
Factory worker Eva (Maya Zapata), originally from the southern Mexican state of Oaxaca, takes a bus to go back to her shanty-town home after work. After a while she is the last passenger still in the bus. The driver asks her if it is okay that he goes to a gas station to fill up, and Eva agrees. However, he takes her to a quiet place and assaults and rapes her together with another man, who then tries to strangle her. The two men, believing her dead, bury her alive. With the little energy she has left, Eva escapes and goes into hiding until it's time for her to testify against the bus driver and the rapist. The rapist is later identified as a powerful man who comes from a wealthy family.
Rent the movie "Bordertown," starring Jennifer Lopez and Antonio Banderas to learn more about this horrifying true story.
"SHE HAD TO HAVE HIM, NO MATTER WHAT!"
Movie Pick! The film “Karla,” is based on the true story of a deranged couple (Karla Homolka & Paul Bernardo) second photo, from Ontario who abducted, tortured, raped, and murdered two schoolgirls in the early 1990s. We are all familiar with this case but this movie takes you behind the scenes in terrifying fashion and reveals never before revealed information.
Karla even helped Paul drug her sister unconscious so he could take her virginity. The sister died after overdosing on the drugs they spiked her drink with. Karla was a tolerate wife who watched her husband seduce women in their own home. One evening he returned after a few hours and told her he was late because he had just raped a woman. Another time, after he returned from Hawaii, he informed her that he had slept with a woman in Hawaii and if the woman called the house, pretend like ‘you are my sister.’ She accepted his behavior because she had to have him despite the consequences.
Over time, Karla suffered horrific domestic abuse at the hands of her husband. He once threw her down the stairs, returning when she awoke to beat her into unconsciousness, he returned a third time, kicking her violently and punching her in the face. One doctor said, ‘this is the worst case of domestic abuse I have ever seen.’ They would eventually be arrested when the husband’s DNA was identified in the two rape victims.
"WOMAN BREAKS INTO PRISON TO HAVE SEX WITH HUSBAND"
The wife of an inmate sneaked into Standford Hill open prison on the Isle of Sheppey, Kent, in the early hours of Sunday to have sex with her husband in his cell. She was caught by a guard on the grounds as she tried to leave.
A source said: “She got in by climbing over a fence and her husband was waiting for her.
“He took her into his cell for a romp and she left a short while later. A few people knew about it.
“She was spotted while trying to leave — and stood out because she was the only woman in an all-male jail.” Her husband has now been sent to a higher security prison.
Standford Hill is on the site of a former RAF base and holds 464 category D inmates.
"Man Accused Of Trying To Sell 'Bread-Ball' Crack At Nursing Home"
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A 22-year-old man is accused of balling up pieces of bread and trying to sell them as crack cocaine to senior citizens in a Florida nursing home.
Investigators said Hillmon Arnold tried to sell the fake cocaine at the Golden Retreat Center on Moncrief Road."He was trying to sell these pieces of crack for $5 apiece to these elderly citizens and, clearly, trying to take advantage of them because he knew they received their checks on the 10th of every month," JSO spokeswoman Melissa Bujeda said.
Police said Arnold ran when officers approached him in the parking lot of the facility.When officers caught up with him, they said they found a pill bottle in this waistband that contained seven or eight aspirin and something that looked like a rock of crack cocaine -- but it wasn't, WJXT reported."He actually admitted he was trying to sell artificial crack cocaine to support his own drug habit," Bujeda said.
Even though what he was selling was not an illegal substance, he was still breaking a law:
Sale/manufacture/delivery or possession of a counterfeit control substance -- a third-degree felony."Because the person on the other end has no idea that it's fake or real, so whether you're attempting to sell a fake or real drug, when you're trying to sell that and you are leading the person to believe it's a real drug, you're just as guilty," Bujeda said.In addition to the counterfeit drug charge, Arnold was also charged with resisting arrest without violence. He was booked into the Duval County jail and held on $52,506 bond.
"CRAIGSLIST RAPIST HAS HIV"
DECATUR, Ga. -- DeKalb County police have charged an 18-year-old man with raping two women they say he lured off the popular website Craigslist.
Detectives say Allen Jamar McDowell of Decatur convinced two women on separate occasions to meet him at an apartment off Kensington Road. The apartment was vacant, but McDowell allegedly gained access and held the women captive while he sexually assaulted them.
Both cases weren't initially linked together and, in fact, police didn't name McDowell as the suspect until recently.
It was later discovered that McDowell is HIV positive. McDowell faces a laundry list of charges including kidnapping, rape and reckless conduct for knowingly exposing someone to HIV. What police say they don't know is how long McDowell may have been soliciting women on the internet and if there are other victims out there who have not yet come forward.
"FEMALE SERIAL KILLER"
Juana Barraza (b.1957) is a Mexican serial killer. Barraza was arrested on January 25, 2006 while running away from a murder scene, on suspicion of being the serial killer known as Mataviejitas ("The Old Lady Killer"). Police said that fingerprint evidence linked her to at least 11 of as many as 48 murders attributed her. She confessed to murdering Ana María de los Reyes Alfaro and three others to the officials that arrested her, but denied involvement in other murders.
Her modus operandi consisted of approaching old ladies with the excuse of doing some social work for them; once inside the house she strangled them (usually with the first thing at hand such as a sock or telephone wire) and then stole some objects from the victims' house.
Police believe she had a partner in the murders (probably a cab driver) who is currently at large.
In March 2008, she was eventually sentenced to 759 years in jail for killing 16 elderly women. Barraza confessed that she was driven to kill the women out of rage toward her mother, who sexually abused her and then abandoned her.
(BLACK WOMAN PLOWS DOWN PEOPLE ON SIDEWALK)
On Thanksgiving Day in 1980, a black woman driving a 1974 black Lincoln decided to plow into people on the sidewalk on North Virginia Street in Reno, Nev. The woman stared straight ahead as she accelerated, striking several people without stopping screaming, Hail Hitler! She drove 100 feet down one sidewalk, then over 300 feet down another, and finally drove two blocks down yet another one. A witness drove in front of woman's car to force her to a halt. She was then arrested. And she was angry that she'd been stopped.
The number of casualties rolled in from the five-block massacre, as people were rushed to area hospitals and bodies were removed from the streets. Several limbs remained on the streets, along with knocked over signs, upset trash containers and items that people had been carrying. Twenty-four people had been seriously injured, and five had been killed at the scene by this reckless driver. Two more would die after being taken from the scene to the hospital. Witnesses likened the scene to a battlefield.
Under interrogation, the driver told authorities that her name was Priscilla Joyce Ford, Ford, 51, was a former school teacher who moved from New York to Reno. She told authorities that some people called her "Jesus Christ." She also claimed to be Adam, of Adam and Eve, and a prophetess. She said that she was tired of life and had deliberately planned to kill as many people with her car as she could as a way to get attention.
"A Lincoln Continental can do a lot of damage, can't it?" she reportedly said. Then she stated that a voice had urged her to do the same deed when she'd been in Boston six months earlier, but another voice — that of Joan Kennedy, she said — had stopped her. She asked the officers how many she managed to kill, hoping the number was at least as high as 75. Nevertheless, Ford seemed satisfied when they told her she'd killed five. She also admitted that she'd been drinking that day, and her blood alcohol level confirmed she was intoxicated.
Found incompetent to stand trial and diagnosed with schizophrenia, Ford was sent for drug therapy until her competence could be restored. She went to trial in 1981, pleading not guilty by reason of insanity on the charge of six counts of first-degree murder and twenty counts of attempted murder. The proceedings lasted five months with numerous witnesses attesting to Ford's mental instability. At one point, she insisted that the car had gone out of control and she could not recall hitting anyone. She offered other explanations in her effort for an acquittal, but the jury was apparently unmoved. They found Ford guilty on all counts, and she was sentenced to death. Ford died in prison in January 2005 of natural causes.
Source: Crime Library
"COLD CASE" (VICE COVERUP?)
In 1988, police officer Lester Garnier (above) was shot twice at close range in his Corvette at a shopping center on South Main Street on July 10, 1988. A carpet-layer working at a nearby store told police he had heard two to three shots and seen two women walk through the parking lot, get into separate cars and drive off. One was in her mid-30s, tall and slender with blond hair below her shoulders. The other was in her late 20s, with a medium build and shoulder-length blond hair.
Another witness reported seeing a skinny, blond woman get out of the passenger door of Garnier's Corvette, circle the car and appear to look in the driver's window before walking away.
Garnier lived in Concord with his parents. The night he died, he left home about 8:45 p.m., then called a friend a few minutes later and said he was running late and wouldn't be able to go see a movie as they had planned.
The carpet layer, working in a store across the street from the shopping center, told police that he heard the shots about 11:15 p.m. Garnier's body was found about 7:30 a.m. the next day, slumped over the steering wheel. He had been shot with an AMT .380-caliber semiautomatic pistol - once in the right temple and once in the right side. His badge was found in the car, but Garnier had left both his 9mm and .357-caliber pistols at home.
Garnier grew up in San Francisco, joined the Police Department in 1980, transferred into the vice squad in 1984 and worked there until his death.
At the time of his death, Garnier was working a case that involved a prostitution ring that specialized in underage girls and allegedly catered to influential civic leaders.
Garnier was one of the officers assigned to do surveillance of the brothel on the edge of the Mission District. On April 10, 1988, police raided the brothel, and the case quickly became one of the most high-profile prostitution ring arrests in the city's history. Among those indicted as patrons was Roger Boas, the city's former chief administrative officer who had recently campaigned unsuccessfully for mayor.
Shortly before he died, Garnier ran into a longtime friend on the street and told him he was working on - in the friend's words - "an undercover case that was big" and involved some well-known people.
Then-Deputy Chief John Willett, who headed the investigation, said at the time that there were many views of Garnier - from someone who was "squeaky clean" to someone "semi in the fast lane with women, the Corvette, the cell phone (which was rare in 1988)." Among other things, Willett said, the department wanted to look at Garnier's contacts with prostitutes. It was also alleged that another cop may have been involved in Garnier's murder and people whispered, 'cover up.'
Authorities say they have identified a "person of interest" in this case, linked by a fingerprint left at the crime scene. Speaking on condition of anonymity, authorities say, it's a woman with a criminal history in Florida, who was a methamphetamine addict and may have been a prostitute and she was living in the East Bay at the time of the killing.
Source: Jaxon Van Derbeken & Susan Sward @ The SF Chronicle
NEW YORK (CBS) — A Massachusetts man and his cousin have been arrested on charges they conspired to kill the man's girlfriend and make it look like a fatal mugging, New York authorities said Tuesday. Carlos Cruz, 36, (1st photo) of Southbridge, Mass., and his cousin, Devon Miller, 25, (2nd photo) of the Bronx, were awaiting arraignment on first- and second-degree murder charges. Prosecutors did not have the names of their attorneys.
The alleged murder-for-hire scheme unfolded at about 4 p.m. Sunday in the Bronx when a man armed with a handgun approached Cruz's car and shot 18-year-old Chelsea Frazier (3rd photo) two times in the torso. Witnesses said they saw Cruz chase the assailant, who turned and shot him in the leg.
Frazier was pronounced dead at the hospital. The couple's 1-year-old boy, who was in a baby seat, was not harmed.
Police said Cruz told them that Frazier, who was driving, got lost and pulled over in a secluded area as the baby, named Alijah, was fussing in the back seat. He said the shooting occurred after the gunman suddenly appeared and demanded his chain and money.
An investigation revealed that the purported mugger actually was Miller, resulting in the two arrests, police said.
The motive for the shooting, Carlos Cruz and Chelsea Frazier were having relationship problems and he thought she would keep him away from his son if they broke up; so he decided to have her killed.
When she was just 19, Sandeela Kanwal traveled from America to Pakistan for an arranged marriage to a cousin twice her age.
Less than six years later, she was dead — strangled — and her father, Chaudhry Rashid, was arrested by police as the suspect for what some have called an "honor killing."
After their marriage, Kanwal had lived in the United States apart from her husband, who remained in Pakistan. She was reunited with him in April at her family home in Atlanta, but he moved to Chicago days later, leaving her alone once again.
On July 1, Kanwal filed for divorce, a prospect her father, a 52-year-old immigrant (above) from Pakistan, would not entertain. Investigators say that after an argument on the night of July 5, he strangled Kanwal with a bungee cord. He could not accept the "disgrace" a divorce or affair would bring on his family, according to police.
• Fifty-year-old Yaser Abdel Said became the focus of a massive manhunt after he allegedly killed his teenage daughters Sarah and Amina — for dating boys against his will. Relatives say he tried to marry off Amina in his native Egypt when she was 16, and he hasn't been seen since the girls were shot to death on New Year's Day.
• Zein Isa, a Palestinian terrorist who lived in St. Louis, was convicted of killing his daughter Palestina in 1989. Investigators say he was furious she had a black boyfriend, went to a school dance and got a job at Wendy's. Palestina's mother held her down as Isa plunged a 9-inch knife into his daughter's chest, actions the FBI picked up on a microphone as they investigated Isa for his terrorist ties.
• Waheed Mohammad, a 22-year-old immigrant from Afghanistan, was shamed by his sister, who he thought was a "bad Muslim girl." At his mother's behest, investigators say, he tried to "stop" his sister, stabbing her multiple times, though she survived and spoke to FOX News.
"OFFICER CONVICTED & DISCHARGED" (SCANDALOUS)
WICHITA FALLS, Texas (AP) An Air Force colonel was sentenced to nine years in prison Thursday and kicked out of the military for assaulting a woman, misusing his government travel card and other crimes at Sheppard Air Force Base.
Col. Samuel Lofton III faced 140 years in prison after being convicted of 34 counts, including indecent assault, larceny, being absent without leave and conduct unbecoming an officer and a gentleman.
"The system has worked and will continue to work in this case," said Capt. Brett Landry, the lead prosecutor.
The 49-year-old former training commander "systematically abused his power, position and authority to the detriment of the Air Force and to the detriment of those around him," Capt. John Montgomery, another prosecutor, said during closing arguments in the sentencing phase Thursday. "The Air Force will recover, and the stains will fade over time. But (the assault victim) will have memories of this for the rest of her life."
Lofton did not comment as he walked, without handcuffs, with his attorneys out of the courthouse. He was accompanied by base security guards and will be held at the base several days before being transferred elsewhere.
Lofton was convicted Wednesday of assaulting one woman but acquitted of rape and two other assault charges involving another. He was convicted of bad conduct charges involving a third woman.
"We are obviously incredibly disappointed in the jury's verdict and in their sentence," lead defense attorney Maj. Mark Etheridge said, adding that he will aggressively pursue all appeals.
Lofton also racked up $26,000 in personal expenses on his government travel card and was reimbursed $14,000 for trips he never took. He pleaded guilty to those charges last week.
"He had the Air Force at his fingertips, was on his way to the top and was one of the most powerful men at Sheppard Air Force Base," Montgomery told the military jury. "He doesn't let the rules stand in his way. Once about every other day he faces a simple decision between right and wrong: to swipe the card or not. ... It really calls into question his integrity and sense of entitlement."
Lofton, the former 82nd Training Group commander at the base from 2004 until he was removed last year amid an investigation into his financial wrongdoing, did not testify at his trial or sentencing.
Defense attorneys called no witnesses Thursday but showed pictures from throughout Lofton's life and career. They argued that Lofton already will suffer consequences because of his court-martial convictions ? especially the indecent assault, which will require him to register as a sex offender in most states.
"It's not punishment, but it's punishing," said Capt. Elizabeth Pullin, one of his attorneys, urging jurors not to both discharge her client and send him to prison. "Sometimes justice means mercy."
Two-thirds of the jury had to agree on the sentence. A term of more than 10 years would have required three-fourths approval.
Lofton also was fined $14,000 and must serve an additional year in prison if he doesn't pay it. He will remain in the military until his release from prison but must forfeit all his pay during that time. He makes more than $9,000 a month. His dismissal is equivalent to a dishonorable discharge.
Jurors followed the prosecutors' recommendations, except the prison term, exceeding it by two years. The penalty will be reviewed by the 2nd Air Force commander, who will also decide when Lofton must pay the fine and whether the additional year-long sentence would be imposed. That commander can't change the not guilty verdict or increase the sentence.
"ATLANTA'S "BLACK" JACK THE RIPPER"
(Black Mysteries In History)
In 2005, Steve Huff (Creative Loafing) wrote a true story about a serial killer who murdered and sexually mutilated several women in Atlanta at the beginning of the last century. Atlanta’s “Jack the Ripper” murdered at least 20 black women, most of whom were young and attractive, between 1911-15. The city’s “Negro servants” were “wild with terror” for years.
At least one victim was homeless, and some may well have been prostitutes, but many were respectable working women and mothers. Some of the women were shot; some were slashed to death; some were beaten. Other than a passing reference to a wound on the breast of one woman, the press did not identify the nature of the mutilations.
The number of actual victims is still not known but may have exceeded two dozen. Each murder attributed to Georgia’s “Jack” occurred on a Saturday night, and for one terrifying spring in 1911, a fresh body turned up every Sunday morning for several weeks in a row.
Like many serial killers before and after him, this murderer taunted the authorities. It seems that “Jack” left a warning for the police in 1914 that he intended to resume his killing spree after a short hiatus, and he in fact did so.
While the police arrested many good suspects based on footprints, eyewitness identifications (one victim’s daughter saw the man and described him as “a well-dressed Negro”), and in one case, a set of scratches on a man’s forearm, sadly, the crimes went unsolved.
Source: Steve Huff (Creative Loafing)
Tonica Jenkins once walked the New Haven campus of Yale University as a graduate student.
But the 27-year-old quickly went from the Ivy League to prison after a string of offenses that ranged from fabricating her transcripts to gain admission to the prestigious university to a federal drug rap.
Now serving a 24-year federal prison sentence, Jenkins is facing trial again, this time for attempted murder. Ohio prosecutors say the young woman and her cousin, Kyle Martin (2nd photo), grabbed a stranger off the street who resembled Jenkins and planned to murder her, burn her body and have Jenkins assume her identity just before she was slated to be sentenced on drug charges.
But the plan to make authorities believe she was dead — while Jenkins embarked on a new life — went awry when the victim, Melissa Latham, now 29, escaped.
Jury selection begins Monday in the attempted aggravated murder case in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, before Judge Lillian Green.
When Yale received an application from Tonica Tonise Jenkins for its biological and biomedical sciences graduate program for the fall 1998 semester, the school not only accepted her, but gave her $15,739 in stipends.
Her stellar academic record appeared to include a perfect 4.0 grade point average from Ohio's Cuyahoga Community College and Central State University as well as glowing letters of recommendation.
But when Jenkins skipped numerous exams, school officials grew suspicious and investigated her credentials.
They learned that Jenkins not only forged the transcripts and letters, but didn't hold a bachelor's degree. Although she had attended Cuyahoga Community College in Cleveland, she never completed her studies.
Jenkins was arrested Dec. 8, 1997, and charged by New Haven, Conn., prosecutors with second-degree fraud and first-degree larceny, stemming from the scholarship money she received. She was also charged with attempting to escape custody after allegedly trying to flee from a police car following her arrest.
After being set free on $10,000 bail, Jenkins continued fabricating stories, according to one judge. When she missed a court appearance in 1999, she later explained to the judge that while on her way to court, a man abducted and raped her, then locked her in the trunk of his car.
Superior Court Judge Richard Damiani not only didn't believe Jenkins, but ordered that she be held behind bars.
Jenkins spent three weeks in jail, during which she allegedly assaulted an officer and attacked two prison guards. She was released on a $150,000 bond.
Jenkins' lawyer at the time, Norman Pattis, claimed he received photos in the mail of Jenkins bound and gagged, as well as an anonymous letter that appeared to be written on Yale letterhead.
Pattis charged that school officials abused his client and that she was the victim of "outright racial hatred." No credence was ever given to those claims.
Facing 36 years in prison if convicted of all charges, Jenkins cut a deal with prosecutors April 7, 2000, that allowed her to avoid prison time. In exchange for pleading guilty to larceny, forgery and biting a prison guard who tried to fingerprint her, she received two years' probation.
As a condition of the deal, she was also required to repay the nearly $16,000 grant money she received.
But that brush with the law was hardly her last. Only months later Jenkins found herself in much deeper trouble.
Jenkins and her mother, Tonica Clement Jenkins, were arrested July 10, 2000, in Tampa, Fla., for attempting to purchase cocaine. The pair allegedly tried to buy 22 pounds of the drug for $70,000 in cash. What they didn't realize was that the apparent drug dealers were undercover agents.
At the time U.S. customs agents arrested Jenkins and her 52-year-old mother, the young woman told authorities she was being paid by the FBI to be an informant, a claim later discredited.
Jenkins once again made bail, was released and returned to her home in Ohio.
Just before she and her mother were scheduled to stand federal trial on the drug charges, prosecutors say, Jenkins hatched a scheme to avoid the charges.
According to prosecutors, Jenkins enlisted the help of her 30-year-old cousin, ex-convict Kyle Martin of Springfield, Ohio. In Jenkins' hometown of East Cleveland, Ohio, where she returned after her arrest, the pair grabbed a woman resembling Jenkins off the street.
For two days, the pair allegedly plied Melissa Latham with crack, marijuana and insulin to keep her sugar levels low. They even took her to the dentist under Tonica Jenkins' name, allegedly to establish a dental record.
Prosecutors say Jenkins planned to murder Latham, burn her body and dump it in an abandoned building. She would then assume her identity, while authorities would determine the dead woman was Jenkins based on her recent dental record.
The alleged plot failed, however, when Latham escaped on April 21, 2001, after two days of captivity. According to Latham, Jenkins and Martin were beating her with a brick but stopped once she pretended to be dead. Latham later said that she heard the two discussing how they were going to burn her body when she made a break for it and ran to a nearby KFC restaurant.
Tonica Jenkins and Kyle Martin allegedly beat victim Melissa Latham with a brick shortly before her daring escape.
Latham, who suffered severe injuries to the back of her head and forehead, passed out in the restaurant in a pool of blood. She was rushed to the hospital in serious condition and received more than two dozen stitches. Medical personnel called it a miracle that Latham, now 29, survived.
East Cleveland police arrested Martin, who not only confessed but said he was solely responsible. While he was being held on $1 million bail, Jenkins — still free on bail for the drug arrest and not charged in Latham's attempted murder — returned to Tampa to stand trial on the drug charges.
But soon after Martin pointed the finger at Jenkins. While on trial, Jenkins was surrounded outside the federal courthouse in Tampa by marshals, her bail revoked.
Jenkins and her mother were found guilty of conspiracy and possession of cocaine with intent to distribute on April 27, 2001.
On Aug. 8, 2001, Jenkins was handed a 24-year prison term for the drug convictions. Her mother received a 16-year sentence.
Tonica Clement Jenkins will also stand trial in connection with the attempted murder plot. She is charged with obstructing justice for allegedly cleaning up Latham's blood after the escape.
Martin, who is slated to testify against Jenkins, already stood trial separately and is serving a 10-year sentence. Though the jury acquitted him of attempting to murder Latham, they found him guilty of kidnapping. Latham is also scheduled to testify against Jenkins.
Though not scheduled for release until 2022, Jenkins now faces up to 36 more years behind bars if convicted of aggravated attempted murder.
The trial will be broadcast live on Court TV.
"MYSTERIOUS DEATH OF MARIAH CAREY'S FORMER MAKE-UP ARTIST"
Mariah Carey's former make-up artist (2nd photo) has been found dead in his Los Angeles home.
Paul Starr-who also worked with Jennifer Garner, Jessica Alba and Renee Zellweger- was found after neighbors alerted the authorities.
The cause of death is unknown.
Starr, 48, had worked in the make-up industry for over two decades and won praise from Hollywood's elite.
Jennifer Garner wrote in Starr's 2005 book, Paul Starr on Beauty: Conversations with Thirty Celebrated Women: "Paul Starr has this uncanny ability to look at a face and see what it needs. He's done my face a thousand times and never repeated a look. I have never felt more like the best version of myself than when Paul has made me up."
"VIRTUAL RELATIONSHIP LEADS TO CRIMINAL CHARGES"
What began as a virtual relationship -- she as a female avatar and he as a lion -- led to a real-life crime, according to police.
Kimberly Jernigan, 33, was arrested for allegedly attempting to abduct her virtual ex-boyfriend, whom she'd originally met in the online game Second Life, for the second time in several weeks.
New Castle County, Del., police say Jernigan hid inside her former boyfriend's home in Claymont, Del., with a Taser and planned to kidnap him so the pair could start a new life together.
"She started this virtual relationship and she wasn't ready to break it off," said Cpl. Trinidad Navarro, a spokesman for the New Castle police. "She had difficulty distinguishing between the virtual relationship and a real-life relationship."
Jernigan was being held on $65,000 bond, and police would not release the name of her alleged victim. It was unclear if Jernigan had a lawyer as of Monday afternoon.
Her husband, Michael Jernigan, in Durham, N.C., said both he and his wife had become involved in online relationships through Second Life. What began as online fun turned into an obsession for his wife, he said.
Source: ABC News
LAPD SILENT ON SERIAL KILLER TARGETING BLACK WOMEN (11 VICTIMS)
In May 2007, the murder of Janecia Peters, 25, was linked through DNA analysis to ten unsolved murders in Los Angeles, the first of which occurred in 1985. The "800 Task Force" was then formed, consisting of seven detectives.
As a result of a four-month investigation by the LA Weekly, investigative reporter Christine Pelisek broke the news of the secret 800 Task Force, the linking of Peters's killing to a string of slayings going back 23 years, and the fact that Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Police Chief William Bratton had been silent on the killer's existence. The mayor and chief never issued a press release or warned the South Los Angeles community of the killer's continuing activities. In some cases the alternative newspaper was the first to inform the families that their daughters had long been confirmed as victims of a serial killer.
In late August of 2008, the same week the Weekly broke the story of Grim Sleeper's body count of 11 (black female) victims, an aide to Police Chief William Bratton said he was too busy to comment on the case.
This week, a $500,000 dollar reward was offered in this case.
"BLACK BEAUTY QUEEN SLASHED & LEFT FOR DEAD"
A Jealous Person Is A Dangerous Person:
Three women (directly above) were inflamed by years of jealousy, so much so, that they savaged a beauty queen (Shanice Wilson-top photo) with box cutters and razor blades to punish her because the ring leader's (Erica Bastidas-center photo) husband taunted her about his interest in Shanice Wilson (but Wilson was never aware of his interest and it was later determined, he knew his wife was jealous and loved to taunt her about Wilson).
Shanice Wilson is a former varsity cheerleader who was crowned the 2005 Banning Peach Queen. She says, "For whatever reason, those three girls (above) always hated me. They always tried to make a fool out of me."
On July 11th, Erica Bastida approached Shanice and told her, "I'm sick of my husband liking you from a distant and throwing your name up." Suddenly she pounced on Shanice and dragged her into the street where the other two women, Azia Aldred (above-3rd photo) and Labrea Steward (above-1st photo) joined the attack.
They didn't stop stabbing Wilson until they were satisfied with the amount of blood. The trio left Shanice in a pool of blood from vicious slashes on her face, head, neck arms and back. Some cuts on her back were six inches long and one-inch deep.
As her attackers walked away, Shanice dragged herself inside, pulled herself up to look in a bathroom mirror, glimpsed at her slashed face and started screaming.
A plastic surgeon spent eight hours operating on two deep gashes on her face but despite the surgeon's best efforts, the scars may never heal completely and it's been determined that Wilson is disfigured and scarred for life.
Police are also contemplating charging Erica Bastida's husband Clarence Dunahoo since his comment put their plan in motion.
If all three defendants are convicted, they can face life in prison without parole.
"Scout Leader Who Tried To Block Gays From The Boy Scouts Pleads Guilty To Molesting Boys"
"HOMOPHOBIC CONVICTED OF MOLESTING BOYS"
A former Berkeley Sea Scouts leader was sentenced Tuesday to six years in prison for molesting two boys aboard his boat in what authorities called a pattern of abuse - and an atmosphere of secrecy - that dated back at least three decades.
As Eugene Austin Evans, 65, of Kensington was led away in handcuffs from an Oakland courtroom, three rows of supporters stood in recognition, apparently refusing to accept his admission minutes earlier that he had been molesting boys on his boat, the SSS Farallon, for 30 years and warning them that "what happens on the boat stays on the boat."
Evans must register as a sex offender.
The judge said he was "struck by the tenor" of numerous letters written in support of Evans. The writers either excused Evans' behavior or denied it outright and accused prosecutors of disgracing the justice system by presenting a contrived case against him, Jacobson said.
The judge read letters from victims in the case, including one who was 13 years old when he first met Evans. The Sea Scouts leader abused him and told him not to "snitch," warning him that "what happens on the boat stays on the boat."
Evans spewed racist and homophobic slurs and showed pornographic pictures of women as he abused young boys, the DA said. He picked out youths who were "vulnerable, needy or just lost," the prosecutor said.
Source: Henry K. Lee @ The SF Chronicle
Would you allow your nine-year-old child to ride around in an ice cream truck with your boyfriend? The result was indicated in the shocking headline "Ice Cream Vendor Allegedly Impregnates Girl, 9." The girl was allegedly raped twice and has tested positive for pregnancy. Police say that the girl's mother was dating Adrian Gonzalez (above).
"MILLIONAIRE BUSINESSMAN WAS ALSO SEX TRAFFICKER"
Introduction: Lakireddy Reddy (above) is worth $50 million dollars and owned the most popular jazz club in Berkeley (Pasand). Local musicians often had jam sessions. People were shocked to learn that Reddy also involved in sex slavery.
Lakireddy Bali Reddy is still a prominent landlord in Berkeley, California, he was convicted in 2001 for immigration fraud and trafficking minors for illegal sexual activity.
On November 24, 1999, Reddy and a group of his employees were spotted carrying the unconscious body of a 17-year-old girl into a van, and trying to force an 18-year-old girl in as well. Marcia Poole, a passing motorist, stopped the kidnapping and alerted the police who came to the scene, but Reddy managed to resolve the situation, by claiming that the unconscious girl was the daughter of one of his employees. The 17-year-old and her 15-year-old sister, who had been lying in a nearby stairwell, had suffered carbon monoxide poisoning in a Reddy-owned apartment and were taken to nearby Alta Bates hospital, where the 17-year-old was pronounced dead. The police accepted Reddy's explanation of an accidental death, but the Berkeley High Jacket, the student newspaper of nearby Berkeley High School, found it odd that the girls had not been attending school. Reporters Megan Greenwell and Iliana Montauk dug into the case and broke the story, exposing a web of criminal activity.
Reddy had been exploiting the H-1B visa system for years to traffic poor Indian workers into the country as forced laborers and sex slaves.
The trafficked workers were generally made to work in Reddy's restaurants and apartment buildings. The two girls, supposed "daughters" of one of Reddy's "programmers," were not only forced to clean Reddy's buildings, but were also his underage sex slaves.
Reddy was sentenced to eight years in prison, required to repay $2 million dollars, and will be a registered sex offender upon his release. Two of his sons received lesser sentences for conspiracy to defraud the INS as part of plea agreements. Reddy was released April 2, 2008.
The Reddy family currently operates numerous apartment complexes in the Berkeley area under the names Reddy Realty and Everest Properties, as well as the Pasand restaurants in Berkeley and Santa Clara.
On nights when the moon was full, a Florida family would be awakened by the sound of gunshots blasting their home and their cars, the shooter sometimes firing into bedrooms where children were sleeping.
June 10, 2006 was a typically warm, quiet night in Pinellas County, Fla. A woman named Cathy, her husband, and their seven children were asleep when the phone suddenly rang at 3:30 a.m.
The caller told her that the two front windows of the business she owned had just been smashed. Cathy got dressed and drove to inspect the damage to her shop. She found that her business, Hidden Treasures, had not been burglarized -- just vandalized.
But minutes later, things got downright bizarre. Her husband called to tell her that someone had shot up his van in their driveway. Her husband ran outside when he heard the shots, just in time to see a gray SUV speed away, with its headlights off, in the dead of night.
Cathy and her family were at a loss as to why someone would attack their home and business in the middle of the night. They had no enemies that they were aware of; often, the most dangerous enemies are those you aren't aware of.
Cathy immediately reported the incidents to the Pinellas County Sheriff's office. After talking with the family, Det. Jeremy Lewis concluded that the shooting and vandalism weren't gang related.
The victims were a suburban family who lived in a area with no known gang activity. Cathy was a busy mom raising five of her own children and two foster children, all while trying to making a living running her small boutique.
There was one ominous clue that hinted the shooting was specifically targeted at Cathy and her family: when Cathy checked her voicemail hours after the shooting, she discovered a bizarre message.
A digitally-altered voice told her:
"Good morning. I have a very important client, Michael Spears, and he said you shouldn't have gotten involved. Next time, those won't be warning shots. You have a good day now."
Cathy couldn't identify the voice, and she didn't know anyone named Michael Spears. It was all so mysterious and bizarre. She felt panicked and vulnerable.
Was somebody really out to kill her family? Police traced the phone call back to a T-Mobile, pay-as-you-go "throw-away" cell phone. It was a dead-end lead.
Four bullets tore through the windows, shattering glass above the bed where her baby was sleeping.
Meanwhile, Cathy was left to figure out who she knew, had known, or maybe didn't know that would shoot up her house, vandalize her business, and leave a confusing warning on her voicemail.
A month would pass with no answers. But the full moon returned on August 9, and at around 4 a.m. that night, someone pulled up in a vehicle and fired shots into a car parked out front, as well as into Cathy' house.
A bullet lodged in the wall of one of the children's bedrooms.
The shooter sped off and Cathy called 9-1-1. Fearing for her children's safety, Cathy asked Det. Jeremy Lewis to move her and her family to a safe place. The family was relocated to a local Days Inn. But living in a hotel with seven children soon proved to be too problematic, so after a few days, Cathy reluctantly moved back into their house.
At the suggestion of Det. Lewis, Cathy went to Wal-Mart and purchased an audio/video surveillance system to install outside of her home. If the shooter came back again, the camera would catch the suspect in the act.
In the wee hours of the morning on September 7, the moon was full once again. Cathy had circled the date on her calendar in anticipation of another attack in the moonlight. Around 4 a.m., the still night air was disrupted by the crack of gunshots.
Cathy jumped out of bed in the room where she and one of her daughters were sleeping. Four bullets tore through the windows, shattering glass above the bed where her baby was sleeping.
Cathy's husband ran outside just in time to see a silver Toyota SUV speed away. The police were called as Cathy anxiously checked her surveillance video.
Her hunch had paid off.
Sure enough, the entire shooting was caught on tape. The video showed the SUV pulling up in front of the house. Then, a person exited the vehicle, walked up the driveway of Cathy's home and calmly fired several shots into the dwelling before walking back to the Toyota and making a quick getaway.
The surveillance tape proved to be a goldmine for Cathy and the Pinellas County Sheriff's detectives.
Although the shooter's face was disguised, Cathy recognized one unmistakable clue: the shooter's walk.
Her heart sank as she suddenly realized that the person who'd been terrorizing her family for three months was definitely somebody she knew.
It was someone Cathy knew very, very well.
It was one of her former business partners, Courtenay Savage, 31. Savage had been involved in an aromatherapy business venture with Cathy two years prior to the shootings.
The business had been amicably dissolved -- or so Cathy had believed until she saw the tape. It was all the more shocking because Cathy and Courtenay had not only been business partners, they'd been best friends for years.
But when police confronted Savage later that day, her actions left no doubt that she was capable of shooting up her friend's house. When the cops tried to arrest her, Savage went hard and lunged for a 9mm pistol in her SUV.
Cops had to use a taser on the pretty blonde to subdue her.
Det. Lewis soon learned that Courtenay Savage had an interesting background.
Savage had worked as a correctional officer for a brief time, and had been an auxiliary police officer in a neighboring jurisdiction. She was also married to a cop.
At the police station, Savage admitted shooting up Cathy's house, and she told detective that she did it because Cathy "deserved it," saying, "I wanted to put a scare in her."
She admitted using a .357 Magnum, rental cars and disguises during the attacks. The motive: she wasn't happy about how the business venture had ended two years prior.
All of this was stunning news to Cathy; she'd thought things were cool between her and Courtenay until all the terror started.
The attacks had each been carefully staged. Rental vehicles and throw-away cell phones, wigs, masks, and careful planning made up the key elements of each shooting attack. During interviews at the jail, detectives were stunned at the callousness of Savage's admissions and her total lack of remorse at shooting up a house full of children.
"I hate kids...but I love dogs," Savage told detectives.
Courtenay Savage was charged with eight counts of attempted murder: one count for each of the people who were in Cathy's home on the night of the third shooting.
She was held in jail, awaiting trial, for nine months before she finally made bail on April 30, 2007. On July 20, 2007, Courtenay Heather Savage failed to show up for a pre-trial hearing.
She was on the run.
Cathy and her family will continue to live in fear until Savage is back behind bars.
Investigators say friends describe Courtenay Savage as an eccentric, bizarre and ruthless woman who believes men are only good for what they can financially provide her with.
She's been known to dabble in the sex industry, sell lingerie, and could possibly be working as an escort or massage parlor worker.
Friends say Savage is also associated the Wicca movement and the occult. Savage is originally from New York/New Jersey area, but she has been known to travel to Mexico to save money on dental work.
Courtenay Savage was captured this week.
"ABUSIVE EX-BOYFRIEND PLANNED TO LYNCH EX-GIRLFRIEND & DAUGHTER"
Lisa Hairston says James Roberts aka Toby (above) was a nice guy when she met him eight years ago in Rockingham County, N.C. Introduced by mutual friends, they were a perfect match -- or so it would seem. During their five year relationship, Lisa says Roberts, who had moved in with her and her children, began to drink and do drugs, showing her a dark side she had never seen before.
She says Roberts slowly turned from the "nice guy" she once knew, to a controlling, abusive boyfriend. Lisa says he would even 'time' her if she left the house to run an errand, and get abusive if he felt she took too long.
Lisa knew something had to change. Worried for the safety of her children, she tried to kick Roberts out, but to no avail. She says he became enraged, threatening to hurt her and the kids. Lisa grew desperate, and finally went to the magistrate's office in the hopes of taking out a restraining order.
When police ran Roberts' name, however, they found out there was a warrant for his arrest. Roberts had failed to pay child support, and police offered to pick him up to serve his 30-day sentence. Lisa agreed to help.
While incarcerated, he expressed thoughts of lynching Lisa and her daughter upon his release. He fantasized about it constantly.
Police say when Roberts' 30 days were up, he made a beeline for Lisa's house. Cops say he walked the few miles from the jail to her house, broke in through a bathroom window, then waited for Lisa to come home.
While waiting, investigators say Roberts tore the house apart, gathering together tools to use for his murderous revenge. He busted a hole in a bedroom ceiling and tied an extension cord to a ceiling beam, making two nooses out of the chord. One was smaller than the other, and police can only guess that the smaller was intended for Lisa's 4-year-old daughter.
When Lisa got home with her daughter, police say Roberts met her on the porch, and while they struggled, Roberts stabbed Lisa several times with a steak knife until the handle broke off. Detectives say he then dragged her still struggling, injured body inside the house and tried to force her into the room with the nooses.
When Lisa refused -- her little daughter watching the entire nightmarish scene -- Roberts grew even more enraged and grabbed a hammer.
Cops say Roberts pummeled Lisa with the hammer. Her cell phone still in her hand, Lisa tried to dial 9-1-1 while under the crushing hail of hard metal. Furious, police say Roberts snatched the cell phone and began to smash it, with such ferocity that he broke the hammer in two.
Police say he then punched Lisa in the face, knocking her again to the ground, then told her he was going for another hammer.
With the need to protect her daughter foremost in her mind, Lisa says she dragged herself outside. Screaming, she says she made it to the yard before Roberts found her, yielding yet another hammer. Police say this time Roberts aimed for Lisa's head, splitting her skull open. Finally, luck was on Lisa's side. Her brother and uncle were next door, moving. They heard her cries and came running.
Police say Roberts snatched the car keys that were still in Lisa's bloody hands, and ran to her car in an attempt to get away. He started to back out of the driveway when Lisa's brother jumped into the car.
While the two men struggled, cops say Roberts backed into a tree. Lisa's brother had a hold of Roberts at some point until Roberts finally broke free and ran into the nearby woods. He hasn't been found yet.
Lisa was taken to the hospital. She required a total of 21 staples for her wounds, but amazingly, she survived. Her daughter was so traumatized by watching her mother get brutally beaten that she lost all of her hair shortly after the event.
Lisa, her son, and her daughter spent the next three months in a protection facility. Lisa says she still lives in fear and she wants to see Roberts' behind bars.
(BODIES FOUND IN FREEZER)
Renee Bowman, 43, has been arrested. (Photo courtesy of Calvert County Sheriff's Department)
LUSBY, Md. - The bodies of two small children have been found in a freezer in a Maryland home.
Calvert County sheriff's deputies say they found the bodies Saturday in Lusby as they were investigating a report of an injured child.
The Washington Post reports Renee Bowman, 43, told authorities the girls were her adopted daughters. She said the remains had been frozen since at least February. She has been arrested.
The sheriff's office says a third girl was found by investigators Saturday after escaping from a locked bedroom by jumping out the window. Bowman told investigators she beat the 7-year-old. She is charged with child abuse in connection with that girl.
Bowman has been ordered held without bond.