Christa Pike (Female Death Row Inmate)

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Mugshot photo of Christa Pike

Christa Gail Pike was the youngest female ever to be sentenced to death in the United States. Born March 10, 1976 she was 18 years old at the time she committed murder and 20 when she was sentenced to die by lethal injection.

Pike lived a troubled life growing up. She allegedly endured sexual abuse and was doing drugs with her mother before she had even hit her teen years. She had behavior issues including bipolar and dropped out of high school. In 1994 she joined the Job Corps in Knoxville, Tennessee, a government program aimed at helping troubled youth by offering vocational training and career skills. There, Pike met and fell for a young man named Tadaryl Shipp, one year her junior. Together they “dabbled” in the occult and devil worship.

Pike became jealous of fellow Job Corp student Colleen Slemmer, then 19. She believed Slemmer was trying to “steal” her boyfriend from her although friends of Slemmer deny the accusations, Pike was set on a vendetta and started harassing Slemmer. One day she had snuck into her dorm room and watched the victim sleep. It got so bad that days before the murder Slemmer had called her mother telling her she wanted to come home but her mother told her she couldn’t due to signing a 2-year contract.

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Photo of Victim Colleen Slemmer

Pike, Shipp and a friend named Shadolla Peterson, 18, came up with a plan to lure Slemmer to an isolated, abandoned steam plant close by on the University of Tennessee Campus. They choose the wooded area due to it being isolated.

On January 12, 1995, Pike, Shipp, Peterson, and Slemmer signed out of the dormitory and proceeded to the woods where Slemmer was told they wanted to make peace by offering her some marijuana. Upon arrival at the secluded location Slemmer started to become nervous and asked Pike if they were really planning on smoking some weed. Pike then turned on Slemmer and started to yell at her and attacked her. For the next 30 – 40 minutes she was taunted, beaten, and slashed, and a pentagram was carved in her chest with a box cutter. A meat cleaver was also used in the attack. Sometime during the torture Pike had said “The bitch wont die” followed by “I want to see her brains flow” and it was then that she lifted a large chunk of asphalt paving over Slemmer’s head and proceeded to smash her skull until brain matter started flowing out of her head. Pike kept a piece of her victim’s skull and began to show it off around the school and within 36 hours the three were arrested.

Below are crime scene photos of Colleen Slemmer

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Smaller full body shot of Slemmer’s brutalized corpse

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The Murder of Crystal Faye Todd, Teenager Brutally Murdered By Friend She Trusted

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Crystal Faye Todd (January 4, 1974 – November 17, 1991)

Conway, South Carolina, was experiencing a cool Saturday evening on November 16, 1991. Located in Horry County, only a dozen miles from Myrtle Beach, the small southern community had not long settled from the resort season’s large influx of tourists. Most of the stores, hotels and restaurants were back to doing regular business. Traffic on the streets had thinned and the town’s citizens were pleased to return to their normal routines.

Conway’s teenagers traditionally spent Saturday night downtown at its only mall. The teens all knew each other and attended the same high school. Coastal Mall was the place to be seen. They would cruise around, exchange small talk, make plans and just hang out.

Attractive 17-year-old Crystal Faye Todd was in her senior year at Conway High School. She was popular and well-liked among her classmates and a good student. Shoulder-length brown hair framed her bright blue eyes and ever-present smile. Although only five-feet-three inches tall, Crystal’s vivacious personality augmented her petite frame.

Early that evening, Crystal attended her grandmother’s birthday dinner party in the neighboring community of Toddsville. At 7 p.m. Crystal left the party and climbed into her new 1991 Celica. Her mother, Bonnie Faye Todd, had given her the car as an early graduation present. Crystal was happy to be driving again. Her license had been suspended for an accident she had while driving under the influence of alcohol. The car was her pride and joy and even had her name “C TODD” emblazoned on a personalized plate.

Crystal Todd was no different than her schoolmates. She looked forward to joining them at the mall, realizing there would not be many more opportunities for her to do so. Graduation was only several months away and she and many of her classmates would be moving on with their lives and careers.

When Crystal arrived at the mall, she hung out with friends. By 8 p.m. she was standing in the parking lot talking with a girlfriend. At 9 p.m. both girls left the mall in Crystal’s car and drove to a party that was being held at a friend’s home in the Punchbowl community. It was almost 9:30 by the time they arrived. At 11 p.m., Crystal and her girlfriend left the party. Her friend had an 11:15 curfew and had to get back to the mall where her car was parked. Crystal dropped her girlfriend off at her car in the parking lot. Crystal drove off, not seeming to be in a hurry. She and her mother had agreed upon a curfew time of midnight. Click here to continue reading the Crystal Faye Todd murder case by Crime Library

You can also watch Crystal Faye Todd: Conway, SC (Investigation Discovery full episode) on YouTube

Teen girl stabbed her best friend to death because she didn’t ‘like her anymore’

Article originally published by Mail Online on May 25, 2013

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16 year old Rachel Shoaf (left) along with a juvenile accomplice, stabbed her best friend 16 year old Skylar Neese (right) to death because she didn’t ‘like her anymore;’ then hid her body for months.

Emerging details of a teen’s murder confession, who claimed she acted out a preplanned stabbing last summer, have shaken a small West Virginia community.

On May 1, 2013 Rachel Shoaf, of Morgantown, pleaded guilty to the second-degree murder of Skylar Neese and she awaits sentencing in a juvenile detention center. Another unnamed girl is also facing charges.

Now, a newly released transcript of a secret plea hearing reveals that Shoaf said she and the second girl carried out a plan to kill Neese.

shoaf-neeseFriends: Rachel Shoaf (on the right in both pictures) has confessed to stabbing Skylar Neese (left) to death last summer

Court documents offer no insight into the motive for the crime. On May 1, Skylar’s father said the only reason he could think of was that they ‘didn’t like her any more.’

WDTV reported that Dave Neese stated: ‘They didn’t like her anymore. That’s the only response I got.

‘I want a reason, I want some kind of reason (for this to) happen. There is no reason I don’t care if you have the best reason in the world, but there’s no reason (for this to happen).’

Neese added of Rachel Shoaf: ‘I feel bad for your parents and I hope you rot in hell.’

The victim was last seen on surveillance video leaving her family’s apartment voluntarily and getting into a car on July 6, 2012.

She was initially considered a runaway, but her parents soon suspected she was abducted.

Police chased numerous leads with no luck. The break finally came when Shoaf admitted plotting with another girl to kill her – shocking even the investigators working the case.

Skylar Neese disappeared in July 2012 and was initially thought to be a runaway but her parents soon suspected she had been abducted

The two girls were charged with luring the straight-A student at University High School out of her family’s apartment in the middle of the night, stabbing her to death at an agreed-upon moment and hiding her body under branches in a Pennsylvania township about 30 miles away from her house, according to court documents.

The pair had spent time with Neese’s mother after the slaying and even helped with the search.

The cold calculation and brutality of the plot shocked a community already frustrated by the slow pace and secrecy surrounding the case.

shoafPictured; Rachel Shoaf, of Morgantown, pleaded guilty to the second-degree murder of Skylar Neese and she awaits sentencing in a juvenile detention center.

Investigators have said little since announcing the charges three weeks ago.

People sit in the chairs at John’s Barber Shop, gaze at Neese’s photo on a bulletin board and wonder: How could anyone so young plot to kill a classmate and friend?

‘They look as normal as any other kid that you could ever see,’ said barber BJ McClead. ‘Not kids you would think would have anything to do with anything like this.’

The other girl’s identity is, for now, shrouded by the confidentiality of juvenile court.

Though McClead says most people in town have figured out who it is, it’s unclear how long the three girls had been friends or just how close they were.

It’s also unclear whether prosecutors will try to have the second suspect charged as an adult, as Shoaf was.

‘People are confused. They’re like, “What is taking so long?”‘ said McClead, whose daughter Hayden had been friends with Neese since junior high.

‘It’s ridiculous. Who’s protecting these girls?’ said the barber, who still hands out red-and-yellow bracelets bearing the victim’s name.

‘Three families’ lives are now ruined because of this heinous crime that these girls committed.’

Monongalia County Prosecutor Marcia Ashdown has refused to return repeated calls seeking comment.

The mystery began last July when Neese climbed out of her bedroom window.

Surveillance video showed her getting into a car at the end of her street in a quiet residential neighborhood near West Virginia University.

With no sign of fear, no money and no contact lenses, she apparently expected to return.

When she didn’t, Dave and Mary Neese worried. Police initially suspected their daughter was a runaway, but they knew better. They walked up and down Crawford Street with Neese’s photo, then plastered fliers everywhere.

‘You couldn’t go 5 feet without seeing her,’ said 24-year-old Brittany Crouse, who moved in around the time of the disappearance. ‘Everybody really, really wanted her to come home.’

For months, police chased down tips to no avail. The transcript from Shoaf’s hearing shows the break came January 3, 2013 when she finally told investigators the truth – and where to find the body.

But it wasn’t until March that authorities confirmed it was Neese, and silence followed until the day of the plea hearing.

‘I think police who were involved in the front lines of that interview and that part of the investigation were stunned at Rachel Shoaf’s confession,’ Ashdown told Judge Russell Clawges that day.

‘She confessed to a plan and conspiracy with another juvenile to kill Skylar Neese. A plan carried out.’

The three girls drove to Wayne Township, Pa., got out of the car and the suspects pretended to socialize with Neese.

‘And, at a planned and agreed upon moment,’ Ashdown said, the girls ‘attacked and stabbed Skylar to death, and they left her there.’

They tried to bury Neese, she said, but covered her with branches when they couldn’t.

In the five-page court file on Shoaf, prosecutors say they plan to recommend a 20-year prison sentence. But she could get as many as 40 years under the law.

Shoaf’s family issued a public apology through a lawyer but has made no further statements.

‘There is no way to describe the pain that we, too, are feeling,’ they said.

‘We are truly sorry for the pain that she has caused the Neese family, and we know her actions are unforgivable and inexcusable.

‘Our daughter has admitted her involvement and she has accepted responsibility for her actions.

‘Our hearts are broken for your loss,’ they told the Neese family, ‘and we are still trying to come to terms with this event.’

Mary Neese has declined interview requests. But the family has tried to spare others their agony, persuading legislators to pass ‘Skylar’s Law’ earlier this year.

Under the law, Amber Alerts are no longer limited to kidnappings in West Virginia. Even when authorities suspect a child is a runaway, information is turned over to Amber Alert officials.

The transcript of Shoaf’s hearing shows other students also had suspicions, chattering on social media about all three girls.

A few overheard a conversation between the suspects about the plot but waited to report it.

The teenagers thought it was a joke, Ashdown told the judge, ‘but only later decided and believed it was all too true and all too prophetic.’

McClead marvels that two teenage girls could maintain their deception from July to January. ‘Some of the criminals that are locked up for life aren’t that hard.’

Don’t Execute Me! Condemned Ohio Man Who Beat And Raped Baby To Death Before Putting Her Limp Body Next To Her Mother As She Slept (MailOnline Article)

steven-smith-pedofileIn a desperate bid to save his life, convicted Ohio baby killer Steven Smith has asserted that he never meant to murder his girlfriend’s six-month-old daughter – only to sexually assault her.

The girl, Autumn Carter, of Mansfield, Ohio, died in 1998 because Smith was too drunk to realize his sexual assault was killing the child, Smith’s attorneys planned to tell the Ohio Parole Board Tuesday. And Ohio law is clear, they say: a death sentence requires an intent to kill the victim.

‘The evidence suggests that Autumn’s death was a horrible accident,’ his attorneys, Joseph Wilhelm and Tyson Fleming, said in a written argument prepared for the board.

They continued: ‘Despite the shocking nature of this crime, Steve’s death sentence should be commuted because genuine doubts exist whether he even committed a capital offense.’
Smith, 46, was never charged with sexual assault, meaning the jury’s only choice was to convict or acquit him of aggravated murder, his attorneys say.

The Richland County prosecutor says Smith continues to hide behind alcohol as an excuse, and calls Smith’s actions ‘the purposeful murder of a helpless baby girl.’

Prosecutor James Mayer told the board in his own written statement that the girl’s injuries are consistent with a homicide that contradicts Smith’s claim he didn’t intend to kill the girl.

‘The horrific attack upon Autumn Carter showed much more than Smith’s stated purpose,’ Mayer said.
Mayer said Monday he didn’t know why Smith wasn’t charged with rape, but said it wasn’t part of a trial strategy.

The attack happened early in the morning of September 29, 1998, in the Hardwood Drive apartment of the girl’s mother, Kaysha Frye, a 19-year-old woman Smith, then 31 years old, had been dating about six months.

Frye was awakened after 3am by a naked Smith, who placed Autumn beside her in bed, according to records prepared for the parole board hearing.

Frye realized the girl wasn’t breathing, told Smith he’d killed her, then ran to a neighbor’s house for help.
Smith, known to consume as many as 12 beers a day, had had several beers earlier in the evening and had a blood-alcohol content of .123 – well above the legal limit – when he was tested almost eight hours later, at 11am, records show.
Smith had unsuccessfully tried to have sex with his girlfriend the evening before the attack, according to records.

The prosecutor argued that Smith’s assault of the girl was revenge for Smith’s failure to perform with Frye.
Smith’s attorneys dispute this, saying the girlfriend was not upset with Smith.

Prosecutors presented evidence at trial that Smith’s attack lasted as long as 30 minutes, during which time Smith beat the girl to death.
Expert witnesses for Smith conclude he may have accidentally suffocated the girl within three to five minutes while he lay on top of her, according to Smith’s clemency petition.
Autopsy showed that little Autumn died of trauma and compression asphyxia. The child also suffered optical nerve damage consistent with being violently shaken.

Smith’s attorneys have an uphill battle in their argument because of the ‘moral repugnancy’ surrounding the claim of partial innocence, said Doug Berman, an Ohio State University law professor and death penalty expert. Click here for the rest of the article written and published by MailOnline.

Teen Stomped Physically Disabled Prostitute To Death in 2008 For Being Called A “Wet Back”

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Mugshot photo of Helen Coulter prior to her Dec 2008 stomping death.

Helen Coulter was a 39-year-old physically disabled female with a troubling past. A street prostitute, she had been to jail on more than one occasion, mainly due to drugs and theft. She was released from a Phoenix woman’s prison in December 2008 after doing time for forgery, identity theft and drug convictions and it didn’t take her long to get back into the swing of things including prostitution.

Many in the city would see the less than appealing woman dressed down, walking with her cane. She received very little respect due to her appearance and background. All one had to do was look at her and they would instantly assume she was a drug abusing hooker.

In the early morning hours of December 13, 2008 as Coulter was walking somewhere between Broadway and 22nd Street in Phoenix, AZ, she came across 16-year-old Jose Preciliano Quintero, a documented gang member since the age 14. Quintero was walking with a group of teenagers including his younger brother not to far from his house. He had just split from his girlfriend and was already on edge and when he spotted Coulter he started taunting her, sarcastically requesting sex and asking her “how much” (for her services).

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Photo of Jose Quintero

Coulter responded by calling Quintero a “wet back” which is a racial slur meant to insult Hispanics.

The insult enraged Quintero who then snapped and punched Coulter, knocking the handicapped woman to the ground. He then dragged her to a nearby field and spent the next 40 minutes beating and stomping her to death. He focused mainly on her face and neck and by the time he was done there was little left on her face and she was non recognizable. He then sodomized her corpse with a stick and left her nude body lying in the field where it was discovered the following morning by a passerby.

A few days later authorities tracked Quintero at his high school and arrested him. He was wearing the same shoes he had used in the attack and Coulter’s blood was still on them. In fact, the bloody footprints on Coulter’s deformed face matched the dried up blood on the bottom of Quintero’s shoes. He definitely made it an easy case for police to solve.

Police brought Quintero back to the Station and interviewed him. He would soon confess, even employing sound effects like “boom” and “pow” when he reenacted the crime. He also told police that Coulter looked “all cracked out”.

His trail was held at the Maricopa County Courthouse and Quintero plead not guilty despite all the evidence against him. His defense lawyers even tried pointing the finger at his younger brother, accusing him of being the culprit. The brother told police that he had gone to the scene and retrieved Quintero’s camera, and that he had poked Coulter’s body with a palm frond. It was pointed out that the two brothers wore the same shoes, perhaps interchangeably. But police could not find sufficient evidence to charge the brother or another youth who was implicated by other witnesses interviewed by police.

The brother did not testify, instead invoking the Fifth Amendment against the possibility of incriminating himself.

The Jury didn’t by the possible cover up and on September 21, 2010 Quintero was found guilty of murder.

His sentencing trail was held in December 2010 to determine if Quintero, then 18, should get a chance of parole after 25 years. His attitude at the sentencing trail two years after his crime was that of amusement. Quintero smirked as the prosecutor described how he stomped Coulter to death, and kept smirking even after the prosecutor called it to the judges attention. Not smart on his part because one can almost predict that in 25 years, when he’s up for parole, his smirking will be brought up at the parole hearing, dimmering any chance of release in the future.

“Her face was destroyed,” said prosecutor Jeanine Sorrentino. “It didn’t look like a face (anymore).”

Helen C. Coulter’s mugshot photo was posted on http://www.mugshots.com/ and is still listed on there today. It also shows her crimes and released date as well as other information.

The burning death of Robbie Middleton

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Photo of Robbie Middleton when he was 7-years-old

Robbie Middleton was a child from Montgomery County, Texas. It was 1998 and he was excited about his upcoming 8th birthday. Sadly, that same day as he left his Splendora home he was forced into a wooded area, tied to a tree, sexually assaulted and tortured. His attacker then doused him with gasoline and set him alight.

Robbie lived when the flames stopped, but by this point he was left with blackened skin, burned-off eyelids, and third degree burns on 99 percent of his body. He was non-recognizable and spent the remainder of his life in a specialist unit at Shriners Burn Hospital in Galveston, TX.

His rehabilitation included over 200 operations and skin grafts, was excruciating and he cried every minute of it but his mother said he never gave in to self-pity and anger.

The surgeons described how during the first few months at Shriners, the little boy suffered nightmares and would wake up screaming in terror, convinced that he was being burned again.

In 2011,  after thirteen years of terrible suffering, Robbie’s premature death was to have one positive outcome.

In a harrowing 17-minute video (although some reports claim it was a 27 minute interview) made just before he finally succumbed to his wounds, Robbie, then 20, named his childhood neighbor Don Wilburn  Collins then 13, and a known trouble maker, as the person he believed was responsible for torching him. He also said that two weeks prior to his birthday attack, Collins had raped him.

Collins already had a history and a bad reputation. In 2001 he was convicted of aggravated sexual assault of an 8-year-old child. This case is not related to Robbie’s case. He was sent to prison but released shortly after. He was then sent back to prison for failure to register as a sex offender however, he was released again on September 5, 2011.

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Mugshot photos of Don Collins

Collins was never charged with Robbie’s sexual assault and murder which caused outrage among the community.

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Photos of Robbie Middleton after the horrific attack

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Robbie succumbed to his injuries on April 29, 2011 from a type of cancer which can only occur as a result of complications from skin grafts for third-degree burns. He was twenty years old.

In a 2011 interview, Bill Pattillo, who was the prosecutor of the case spoke only to KHOU 11 News about why he let the case go.

Montgomery County Sheriff’s detectives interviewed Middleton at Shriners Hospital in Galveston and later at the Middleton’s home.

“Both times we got nothing that mentioned Don Collins,” Pattillo said. “He mentioned other names; the names we felt like were just some of his friends.”

Pattillo said Robbie gave five or six different suspects.

“That statement was patently impossible, but he was under trauma, in shock,” Pattillo said.

Robbie was also heavily sedated and had to be interviewed in between doses of pain medication. Investigators discounted that interview.

To family, the media, and in a deposition made just days before he died Robbie repeated the same thing.

“Don grabbed me and turned me around and threw gas in my face,” Robbie said.

But Pattillo said Robbie named other potential suspects to authorities.

He said he had not made that statement before in 13 years “because it could injure the case.”

If the case had gone forward prosecutors would have been duty bound to share that potentially damaging information with the defense.

11 News also asked about a confession 13-year-old Collins had reportedly made while in custody.

“He did” Pattillo acknowledged, but added “there were problems with it.”

Pattillo’s philosophy was that it was “better to let him go and get him in the future, than try him and lose it.”

“He (Collins) pulled down my pants and started raping me,” Robbie said. He said the sexual assault occurred about two weeks before he was set on fire and in the same wooded area.

“It’s tragic that statement didn’t come out in 13 years,” Pattillo said.

In a civil lawsuit against Collins held in December 2011 a Texas jury awarded the Middleton family $150 billion. One of the biggest settlements ever awarded. The award was largely symbolic and the parents don’t expect to ever see any money. According to the Schulenberg Sticker, the family hoped the verdict would pressure the county into prosecuting Collins for murder.

Robbie Middleton’s accusations have opened the way for Collins, now a convicted sex offender, to be charged with felony murder 14 years after the incident. Murder charges were filed against him after his September 2011 release charging him as an adult rather than a juvenile.

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Robbie Middleton (28 June 1990 – 29 April 2011),

Middle Eastern father buried his newborn baby ALIVE because she was deformed

khan-arrestedChand Khan, a father of four children, was arrested less than eight months ago by Pakistani Police. His crime? Burying his infant daughter alive because she was physically deformed.

The infant was born Thursday, July 12, 2012 in a hospital in the nearby town of Kacha Khoh. She would have been Khan’s fifth child but after seeing his newborn daughter and realizing she was physically deformed, he is said to have been shocked and embarrassed and started planning on how to dispose of her, even asking doctors to get ‘rid’ of the baby, suggesting they use poison. Doctors refused.

‘I am a doctor at the same hospital where this child was born. This man came to me yesterday with a request that I should do something to dispose of his child, but I snubbed him and said get out. ‘No one has the right to kill anyone because of his or her physical deformity.’  Mohammed Farooq, a doctor at al-Shifa hospital who cared for the baby after it’s birth.

Photo of Chand Khan with his face covered, being arrested in 2012

Khan then went and told relatives that the child had been a still-born, and many believed him until the baby let out a cry during the funeral service which was held on the evening of July 14, 2012. Many stunned witnesses told Khan to rush his daughter to the hospital but he had a different plan in mind.

“After seeing his newborn daughter, Anwar told his relatives that the baby was born dead. He organized a funeral for her. During the funeral service the baby started crying. The presiding cleric told the father to rush the baby girl to the hospital but instead of going to the hospital he buried the baby,” Shamshad Khalid, the town’s police chief said.

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Photo of Khan being prison bars in 2012

Residents alerted the police after seeing Khan take the baby to a graveyard in Katcha Khowa, Khanewal, in the eastern Punjab province of Pakistan shortly after the funeral service. Police raided his house and arrested him for murder.

The infant’s body was exhumed and an autopsy was performed which indicated she had been alive when she was buried. She was only 2 days old.

“She was healthy and alive but she had a fairly large head and abnormal features,” said Farooq.

Khan did not tell his wife, who was still recovering from the birth at the hospital, about his plans to get rid of their child.

Pakistani human rights activist Farzana Bari has condemned the incident and Raghab Naeemi, a prominent Pakistan religious scholar, demanded a stern punishment for the man if he is found guilty.

The case has also shed light on prejudices in Pakistan against children, especially girls, who are born with physical deformities and/or mental retardation. Many feel embarrassed and shameful and Khan’s case proves that some will go great lengths to dispose of the shame.

Reports said that if found guilty, Khan will receive the death penalty.