It’s tough to be a teenager. I remember – you can go back and look at my Livejournal for proof. (LOL, no way am I giving you that information.) Your hormones are all over the place, your friendships are changing and you’re learning who you are as a person. Plus, high school kinda sucks. But that’s no reason to kill someone!
These disturbed teens freaked me the F out and made me terrified to have children one day. Evil is evil, and it doesn’t matter if you’re 85 or 15 – if it’s in you, it’s in you.
Brenda Ann Spencer
This case isn’t recent, but it is famous. Brenda Ann Spencer killed a school custodian and an elementary school principal, as well as injuring eight children and a cop in San Diego in 1979. When they asked Brenda why she did it, she simply said, “I don’t like Mondays.”
Josh Philips’ young neighbor, eight-year-old Maddie, went missing one day in 1998. Flyers went up and search parties went out, but it wasn’t until Josh’s mom was doing a routine cleaning in his room a week later that a suspicious wet spot on his mattress led her to Maddie’s body, stuck inside Josh’s waterbed. Josh’s story was that Maddie had come over to play, and 14-year-old Josh accidentally hit her in the eye with a baseball. He panicked at the sight of blood and proceeded to strangle her, thinking he’d get in trouble for having someone over without parental supervision.
Apparently Josh’s father had a terrible temper and may have been abusive to his son. After strangling Maddie with a phone cord, he hit her again with the bat and then stabbed her. Since he was just 14, he wasn’t eligible under Florida law to be sentenced to death, and now, in prison, he works as a paralegal. His case might be revisited soon, as Josh was so young at the time of the crime.
Fourteen-year-old Barry had been experiencing delusions when he walked into his school dressed in a long black coat armed with three guns stolen from his father. He took an algebra class hostage and even reportedly said, “This sure beats algebra, doesn’t it?”
Police thought Barry was mentally ill and had been influenced by Pearl Jam’s recent “Jeremy” video. (It was 1996.) He’d also read a Stephen King book in which a similar situation occurs, so it’s possible his vulnerable mental state had been affected in more than a few ways. Barry killed three people and kept his classmates hostage for ten minutes before he was distracted by a teacher. Now he’s serving two life sentences.
Sheila Eddy & Rachel Shoaf
Teenage girls can have rather dramatic friendships, going from BFFs to enemies in one or two texts. That doesn’t mean you need to murder the girl you’ve been besties with forever, though! In 2012, Sheila Eddy and Rachel Shoaf plotted and carried out the murder of their third best friend, Skylar Neese. Shoaf told police they killed Skylar simply because they didn’t want to be friends with her anymore, and they were afraid of what she’d say about them if they cut off the friendship.
The two lured Skylar out of her house, stabbed her on cue, and tried to bury her body in the woods, but quit early and covered her with branches instead. Sheila was sentenced to life in prison, and Rachel got 30 years with possibility of parole after ten years.
You can read more about this tragic case and its impact on Twitter here.
Peter Zimmer was fourteen when he killed his parents and his 10-year-old brother. Police found a bloody scene at the family home; Zimmer had shot his father and stabbed his mother and brother. He was sentenced to a juvenile detention center since he couldn’t be tried as an adult due to Wisconsin law. Zimmer was eventually set free, changed his name to Jovan Collier and inherited a bunch of money from his dead parent’s estate. Yeah, we know.
“I was basically reinvented,” said Collier at one point. He moved to Florida and had relationships with a bunch of different women who didn’t know about his past. And guess what? He was eventually sent back to jail on stalking charges. Collier claims he grew up in an abusive household, but does admit that he feels deep remorse for what he did when he was a kid named Peter Zimmer.
Read more about the crazy case here.
The “Collie” killers
The names of the two female teenage killers from Collie, Australia, have never been released, but we do know that they murdered one of their best friends by strangling her with a wire and attempting to suffocate her with a chemical-laden fabric. They, like Sheila Eddy and Rachel Shoaf, just “felt like” killing their friend. According to reports, neither girl expressed any feelings of guilt or sadness after their crime.
In 2008, 16-year-old Erin Caffey murdered her mother and two brothers and seriously hurt her father, all because they wouldn’t let her go out with her boyfriend. She enlisted his aide in the crime, and, with a friend, the three carried out a gruesome crime that they covered up by attempting to burn down the house. All three were charged and imprisoned.
Tyler Hadley had an idyllic childhood and a happy home. He was doted on by his parents, and he was a member of the Boy Scouts. Once he became a teen, though, things changed. He did the normal teenage rebelling, from trying drugs to skipping school, but there was something more sinister at work.
In 2011, 17-year-old Tyler planned a big party at his parent’s home, but before the guests arrived, he made sure his parents were out of the way. He killed both of them with a hammer, and then carried out the party plans as usual. He told a friend of his crime, but the friend didn’t believe him. However, a few party guests tipped off police, and when they arrived at the Hadley home, they found that Tyler had thrown basically every item from the house into the master bedroom to cover up his crime. It looked like a scene from “Hoarders.” The house has since been demolished, and Hadley remains locked up.
French teenager Borel killed not just his family but twelve others on a rampage in 1995. Apparently his mother was abusive to her son and often berated him, which proved too much for Borel to take. He killed her, his stepfather and a sibling before journeying into town with two guns. He stopped by his BFF’s house and killed him, then killed eleven other people. Where is Borel now? He committed suicide right after his rampage, surrounded by cops.
Fifteen-year-old Nehemiah killed his entire family of five, starting with his mother. He worked his way from his brother to his crying little sisters, killing them all with a rifle. His father, a pastor and chaplain, worked nights, so Nehemiah waited up until he arrived and killed him too. Griegos had been having suicidal thoughts, and was hoping to die in a shootout with police post-murders. Griegos’ surviving family thinks he had a psychotic break and the trial is still held up because of differing opinions of his mental state.