Murder: when one person intentionally kills another person without legal justification or excuse. In other words, the reason for killing is because of hatred, jelousy, and greed towards the victim.
1st degree murder- a brutal planning attack
justifiable homocide- kills using self defense to protect one self
Two brothers, Lyle and Erik Menendez, were convicted of first degree murder on March 20, 1996 for the killings of their violent parents Kitty and Jose Menendez who were murdered on August 20, 1989.
Erik and Lyle, were two sons of successful Cuban American bussiness executive. They lived a wealthy life in a big mansion home on Beverly Hills of California. They were well educated since they were little until highschool. Both Lyle and Erik had a great talent for tennis which they began playing since 5 years old. They played all through highschool and college. Lyle graduated from Princeton day school and attended Trenton State College. He played pro tennis in college. As for Erik, he graduated from Beverly Hills highschool and also played tennis all throug highschool and college. He ranked in 7th in the state.
Erik testified that he was being sexually, psychology, physically abused since 5 years old and continued through his late teen. He said that his father had two sides of him. One side was caring, loving and kind and the other side was like a nightmare where he would molest him, massaging his back and thighs, his genital areas, and performing oral copulation when he was six years old. And at a young age, Erik had no idea if it was right or not so he let it be because he thought it was something he had to get use to or it would eventually stop. He was also brutal always hitting, slapping, and punching him whenever his father felt he didn't do his best. When he cried more, he'd get hit even more. Many friends of the family testified about the secret life that was held in the Menendez family.Lyle and Erik's former tennis coach testified that Jose worked both of them too hard and that winning was everything.
Lyle was molested by his father as a child. It stopped when he was 8 years old but the violence continued to see violence until 11 or 12. His mother was also abused by Jose. Learned about Eriks secret about being sexually abuse and confront Jose and he threatened him that if he said anything about it, he'd kill them. Jose was a very powerful man who had some kind of control over them. There mother knew about the abuse but did nothing to protect them. Lyle and Erik were rejected and terrorized by their parents and were kept away from friends and didn't recieve signs of affection by Kitty and Jose. LYle and Erik felt that the only way they could stop the abuse they were going through since childhood and protect themselves was to kill them. They had gutt feelings and feared that their parents were going to kill them sooner or later because they threatened many times that they would.
County Deputy Golden who performed autopsies testified Jose being shot 6 times and Kitty 10 times. Lyle 33 years of age is now being held at the California Correctional Institution Tehachapi. Erik now 31 years of age is being held at a different state at California State prison in Sacramento County. They are each serving two consecutive life prison terms without the possibility of parole.