"The world is dangerous to live in
not because of the people who do
but because of the people who know
about it but do nothing to stop
first names are links that will
take you to websites with more
I would like to give credit to the
Children Who Never Made It Home and
Stolen Innocence webpages for most of the names
DIEGO 2003-- Jurors will deliberate
for a second day in the trial of a
convicted rapist accused of the
torturing and killing two young
South Bay boys more than 10 years
Scott Erskine is accused of
molesting and killing Charlie
Keever, 13, and Jonathan Sellers,
9. He is charged with two counts of
murder, with allegations that he
used a rope to strangle the two
Tuesday, Deputy District Attorney
Valerie Summers told jurors in her
closing argument that it could have
taken up to five minutes to kill
each victim. She said the evidence
was "uncontested" that Erskine
bound, gagged, molested and
strangled the boys on March 27,
Erskine also is charged with
special circumstance allegations
that the murders happened during
the commission of a lewd and
lascivious act on a child under 14,
that both boys were tortured, and
allegation of multiple murders. If
the jury convicts him, the same
panel would decide whether to
recommend his execution or life in
prison without parole.
According to testimony, the two
boys were riding their bicycles in
South San Diego near the Otay
River, when Erskine attacked them
and took them into an igloo-style
fort covered with brush. That is
where they were molested and
killed, according to Summers. It
was "a horrible way to die," the
Police collected DNA samples from
the victims, but it wasn't until
2001 that advanced DNA technology
revealed that Erskine's DNA was
left in Keever's mouth, Summers
said. His DNA was also found on two
cigarette butts found outside the
fort, the prosecutor said.
The defendant was serving a 70-year
sentence for raping a woman in
October 1993 when he was charged
with killing the two boys.
Investigators in Palm Beach, Fla.,
are looking at Erskine as a suspect
in the 1989 rape and murder of a
26-year-old woman, Summers said.
HILL--Rock Hill police have charged a
second man with rape and murder in the
2001 death of a 12-year-old girl,
raising questions for similar charges
against the girl's father.
Amanda Cope was found strangled and
raped in her bed Nov. 29, 2001. Her
father, Billy Wayne Cope, was jailed the
next day on murder and criminal sexual
Now police say DNA evidence links James
Edward Sanders, 44, to the case.
Sanders, in jail since January 2002, was
charged with murder, two counts of
sexual conduct and criminal conspiracy
commit criminal sexual conduct, Capt.
Charles Cabaniss said.
Police say DNA also links Sanders to the
rape of a 60-year-old woman and that he
was involved in four home break-ins
around the time Amanda Cope was killed.
Police now have added a conspiracy to
commit criminal sexual conduct charge
against Billy Cope.
But there is no connection between
Sanders and Billy Cope, Cope's lawyer,
Phil Baity of Fort Mill, said.
Cope's DNA does not match the DNA taken
from Amanda Cope, but Sanders' does,
Baity said. Police would not discuss
whether Cope's DNA was found on his
"The only scientific evidence in this
case implicates Mr. Sanders," Baity
Sanders lived less than two blocks from
the Copes when Amanda died.
Two months after Amanda Cope's death,
her mother, Mary Sue Cope, died of an
infection while recovering from major
surgery. Two other children in the
family have been living with relatives
Mitchell County, N.C.
December 2 ,
2003-GA- Death row inmate
Eddie Albert Crawford, convicted of the
1983 rape and murder of his 2-year-old
niece, is scheduled to die by lethal
injection Dec. 10.
execution is scheduled for 7 p.m. at the
Georgia Diagnostic and Classification
Prison in Jackson.
Crawford, 56, was convicted of the
Sept. 25, 1983, killing of Leslie
Michelle English. The toddlers body was
found the next day in a wooded area,
strangled, bruised and raped.
If executed, Crawford will be the
12th Georgia inmate put to death by
1980-A LITTLE GIRL wearing a brown
jacket and a pink hair ribbon went
out clutching a quarter for candy
23 years ago and never returned.
The city was horrified back in 1980
when police found 5-year-old Naja
Smallwood's naked body in a
trash-filled closet in an abandoned
housing project. She had been
sexually assaulted and strangled.
Naja's mother, Dolores Smallwood,
59, still wells up in tears when
she thinks about her baby girl.
She has struggled with depression
for years, her other kids have
suffered and one of her sons is in
The worst thing, she says, is that
she thinks she knows who did it.
And he has never paid.
Police and Smallwood think a
neighborhood teen who used to
baby-sit Naja lured her to the
building and killed her. He was
convicted of raping a 9-year-old
months after Naja disappeared.
"We have considered him a suspect
since a year after the girl was
killed," said Detective Charles
Brown, of the Police Homicide
Division, who has followed the case
But cops have never been able to
pin the suspect to crime.
Brown hopes that now, with new DNA
technology, police will finally be
able to get him.
"You just need that one little
thing to get you over the hump,"
Naja was reported missing on Nov.
14, 1980. After a five-day search,
police found her in the Earlham
Building in the Schuylkill Falls
public housing project, Merrick
Road and Earlham Street in East
Falls, a vacant structure.
"She was found up on the 11th floor
in a small closet," Brown said.
18,2003-Fla- Politics in the
Orange-Osceola Public Defender's
Office may allow a man, found
guilty in a 17 year old murder
case, to walk free.
just learned that the public
defender called an emergency
hearing Tuesday in the Franklin
Reed murder case. Reed, found
guilty of murdering and raping
13-year-old Mollie Pittman, was
supposed to be sentenced late this
week but, as of late Tuesday
afternoon, his lawyers have been
taken off the case.
On November 10, 2003, Assistant
Public Defender Gregory Hill was
set to give closing arguments in
the Franklin Reed murder case. That
was, until Hill's co-council and
supervisor Jennifer Davis, decided
make the arguments herself.
She said Reed wasn't prepared for
closing arguments. He said that
wasn't fair and resigned.
Franklin Reed's family says his
lawyer's actions could now be
grounds for an appeal.
Davis' boss told us that too much
attention is being focused on these
closing arguments in the first
place and that it would have been
difficult for anyone in the public
defender's office to argue over the
substantial amount of DNA evidence,
against Reed, found on murder
victim Molly Pittman (photo left).
Reed's family maintains his
innocence and doesn't like the fact
that office politics are prevalent
in the halls of justice.
Public defender Robert Wesley told
us that it's not unusual for
tension to be high between lawyers
working on a high profile case like
this and that family members of
someone found guilty almost always
try and blame it on an unfair
The Jenny Lin
Foundation was incorporated in 1994
after the tragic and brutal murder
Jenny Lin, a talented and
well-loved fourteen-year-old girl.
mission is to aid law enforcement
officials in apprehending the
perpetrator as well as increase
community awareness of child
safety. In addition, the foundation
events which celebrate Jenny's
1997, with eight other members of
the Bloods gang, Martinez
kidnapped, gang-raped, sodomized,
tortured, and murdered Brandy
Duvall (14). The gang members took
turns sexually assaulting the
viciousness of the multiple sexual
assaults left Ms. Duvall bleeding
from her vagina and anus. That did
not deter her attackers, though,
and they would climb off of her
laughing, covered with her blood.
They once showered her off to get
her into a fit condition for
additional rounds of sexual
Martinez slit Ms. Duvall’s anus
open with a knife so that she could
be sodomized, or possibly
re-sodomized due to the swelling
her various rectal injuries caused.
In addition to his penis, Martinez
brutally sodomized Ms. Duvall with
a beer bottle and wooden broom and
toilet plunger handles.
During the course of the rapes,
Martinez repeatedly kicked and beat
the child, including during periods
when she begged for her life. One
time, Martinez kicked her football
punt-style in the chest after an
episode of sodomistic assault
caused her to defecate
uncontrollably and soil one of her
Martinez killed Ms. Duvall by
stabbing her, choking her with his
bare hands, stabbing her some more
(for a total of 28 knife wounds),
and then throwing her, with the
help of another gang member, down a
boulder-covered slope, where she
bled to death in the night.
separate incidents, Martinez--who
was a drug dealer and armed
robber--shot four other people, one
of whom died. Martinez bragged that
he liked shooting people because he
enjoyed watching his victims’
bodies twitch. Another time,
Martinez beat a girlfriend
unconscious in front of the
girlfriend’s young child.
Charlotte, NC -- June 5, 1993 -- Tasha, 17, and Raylynn, 15, were last seen
alive being forced into a car outside Raylynn's apartment complex of
Emerald Bay Apartments in Charlotte, North Carolina on June 3, 1993.
Resident at the complex heard gunshots and shouting sometime after
midnight. On June 8, the girls were found hidden in a weeded lot at
Chemway Industrial Park on Exchange Street in Charlotte. Both had been
raped and shot to death.
The murders went unsolved until October 2003, when Myron Terrell Burris
and Robert Chevelle Friday were both arrested and charged with killing
Raylynn and Tasha. In March 2004 a third man, Antwon Maurice Sanders,
was also arrested and charged. Burris and Friday were convicted felons
with long records who became suspects shortly after the murders, but
police did not have enough evidence to charge them for over a decade.
After they were in custody investigators received information that
Sanders was also involved. As of April 2004, the three men are awaiting
Tasha was born in Seattle and had attended Olympic High School with
Raylynn, but had dropped out before her death and was working at K-Mart.
Raylynn would have had her sixteenth birthday a month after she died.
She liked talking on the phone, listening to rap music and shopping, and
wanted to be a lawyer. Tasha and Raylynn had been friends for about two
months prior to their murders.
Indianapolis, IN -- Nov. 1, 2000 --
More than six years after the
killing of 11-year-old LaShonna
Bates shocked the city and unified
it across racial and economic
lines, Indianapolis police arrested
a convicted child molester and
accused him of her murder.
The accused is 29-year-old Charles
R. Daugherty, the man who found the
fourth-grader's badly decomposed
body in a wooded area near Euclid
and Massachusetts avenues in April
At the time, Daugherty told police
the gruesome discovery upset him so
much that he couldn't even call 911
for more than two hours.
LaShonna, a student at IPS School
46, disappeared Feb. 15, 1994, from
near her school bus stop at
Meridian and Arizona streets on the
She lived in the neighborhood
nearby; so did Daugherty.
White and black volunteers formed
search parties and stapled posters
to phone poles in rich and poor
neighborhoods throughout the city.
A reward was raised. And after
LaShonna's body was found, IPS
named a swimming pool in her honor.
But the outpouring of support
didn't result in an arrest. That
"Why did it take so long?'' she
said. "I'm just horrified."
According to detectives, there were
plenty of reasons to suspect
Daugherty but not enough evidence
to lock him up.
First, there was Daugherty's
criminal history and the fact that
he lived in the same neighborhood
as LaShonna, yet was also the one
to find her body -- clear on the
other side of town.
Or how, at first, Daugherty told
investigators he found LaShonna's
body while chasing a runaway dog.
Later, West said, Daugherty
admitted the story was a lie --
another red flag.
But for years investigators
couldn't generate enough evidence
to make an arrest.
Rayl was able to confirm
Daugherty's 1991 conviction for
He pleaded guilty, the spokesman
said, and received a four-year
suspended sentence and four years'
probation. The deal would have kept
him out of prison if he had not
broken the law while on probation.
Daugherty still was on probation at
the time LaShonna disappeared, Rayl
said. He already had violated that
probation in 1992, the spokesman
added, and served two years in
prison once that violation was
resolved in 1995.
For six years, only the harshest of
the details were known:
LaShonna Bates. Pigtailed
11-year-old. Abducted in 1994
outside a Near-Southside bus stop,
found dead seven weeks later on the
Eastside. Blunt-force trauma to the
Now a sworn statement has fleshed
out some of those details, though
plenty of mystery remains.
The convicted child molester who
police say now admits killing
LaShonna told detectives he
kidnapped her about 8 a.m. and
repeatedly raped her until it
started to get dark. Finally he
bashed her skull in with a rock
when she resisted his last rape
"My reaction, and all his
co-workers, we were all shocked,"
said Dan Rhoades, general manager
of the restaurant where Daugherty
has worked for three years. "He was
an extremely steady employee. He
never missed work or was late."
was reported missing 4 days before
his body was found dismembered and
encased in concrete. Charged and
convicted in his murder was a 27
year old, one-armed drifter, John
Samuel Ghobrial. Ghobrial sexually
assaulted and smothered Juan before
dismembering his body. Ghobrial was
eligible for the death penalty, but
his eventual sentence is unknown at
population of 350.000 residents, in
this region live about 400 people
with penal records for sexual
abuses. We already questioned about
the same amount, but each day new
people come out. It's amazing, we
searched in about 300 houses, but
the list is not yet finished."
Even the "La mouette"
association, born 13 years ago to
cooperate with the investigation on
the seven years old Magali
Forabosco, is cooperating.
Even Magali disappeares in
Agen on January 1984 while coming
back from school with her elder
brother. He starts running to reach
their father that always waits for
them half way: the boy is anxious
to tell him about a good school
grade. Magali stays behind by her
A man that just finished twenty
years of jail for sexual abuses
reaches her: he stunnes her and
hides her under a blanket in his
car, and drives for about thirty
kilometers to the ruins of an old
Here in the silence of the
country he rapes her for four hours
before choking her to death. Eleven
days after, a young girl that went
hunting with her father finds the
remains of her body.
A year passes, and that man, Robert
Guiné, is arrested for having tried
to abuse on a fifteen years old
girl: during the interrogations he
confesses the murder of Magali.
The hunter's daughter was
so shocked that now she lives in a
nursing home for mental insanity.
In the region of Bordeaux the cases
of sexual abuses on minors
unfortunately are not too rare.
Just two months ago, was arrested a
man that had abused on ten girls in
a place 200 kilometers away from
Agen. The maniac would fake to be
the school doctor, and would ask
them to show him their school. But
once in the car the girls were
brought somewhere else and were
The girls all had long
blond hair and blue eyes.
Salt Lake City
homicide detectives are trying to
collect forensic evidence that
inexplicably was not gathered after
the 1986 murder of 14-year-old
Cold-case detectives quietly
exhumed Hambleton's body last week.
Investigators told the victim's
mother, Vicki English, only that
they were seeking more forensic
evidence that could help solve the
nearly 18-year-old case.
But an April 1, 1986, autopsy
report reveals that Salt Lake City
homicide detectives, in conjunction
with the State Medical Examiner's
Office, did not perform a rape
analysis or a stomach-contents
analysis on the teen, whose
partially nude body was found in an
irrigation ditch west of Salt Lake
City International Airport. The
report indicates fingernail
clippings and hair samples were
After the exhumation, police
would not offer details about what
amounts to a second autopsy,
including whether a rape analysis
was conducted. "We asked the M.E.
to look at the original autopsy and
review that and gather all the
evidence from the body they could
to gather DNA," Detective Dwayne
Baird said this week.
Former Salt Lake City homicide
detectives Ken Farnsworth and John
Foster, both of whom witnessed the
original autopsy, said in recent
interviews they could not remember
whether a rape analysis was done.
James F.G. Bell, a former detective
who headed up the Hambleton murder
investigation and also witnessed
the autopsy, said through a
spokesman that he had no comment.
The oversight is surprising to
Professor James Gaskill, a former
state medical examiner who ran the
State Crime Lab from 1972 to 1994.
He now teaches criminalistics at
Weber State University. "It's
pretty obvious that sex offenses
and murders go hand in hand," he
said this week. "Any time you find
a person without clothes, you have
to suspect there was a sexual
Further, Gaskill said that
analyzing stomach contents as part
of an autopsy is standard
procedure. "The first reason would
be to check for toxic medications
or drugs. The second reason is that
it's helpful in determining the
time of death."
The murder investigation was
reopened earlier this year after
Mayor Rocky Anderson appointed an
independent commission to examine
several cold cases.
Hambleton disappeared Feb. 17,
1986, after telling her mother she
was going to a Kiss rock concert
with friends. Her family and some
former police officers long have
believed that Hambleton's murder is
linked to the deaths of Lisa
Strong, 25; Christine Gallegos, 18,
and Karla Maxwell, 20 -- all within
a one-year period.
Ballistics tests revealed that
Strong, Maxwell and Gallegos were
killed with the same .38-caliber
handgun. However, Gallegos also was
stabbed repeatedly in a manner
similar to Hambleton, who was not
shot but died from knife wounds.
Former Salt Lake City Police
Officer Frank Hatton-Ward, as well
as Greg Chase and John Ilk, former
members of the city's now-defunct
crime analysis unit, publicly
theorized that the women --
including Hambleton -- were killed
by a gang known as the Chosen Few,
who may have passed around the gun.
But a special homicide task
force established in 1986 suspected
an Idaho drifter in the murders.
Sgt. Don Bell, then with the Salt
Lake City homicide unit, branded
Hatton-Ward, Chase and Ilk in news
accounts as "junior-varsity
detectives." All three subsequently
left the department.
But Hatton-Ward continues to
believe his investigation was on
the right track. "They referred to
the three of us as junior-varsity
detectives, but I can't imagine
finding the body of a 14-year-old
without clothing and not doing a
rape analysis," he said this week.
Although city police never
solved any of the murders, a state
grand jury indicted Forrest
Whittle, an associate of gang
members James Sherrard and Frank
Chris Martinez, in Strong's death.
He was convicted in 1995 and is
serving 5 years to life.
In courtroom testimony,
Whittle's roommate, Mike Staples,
said Sherrard and Martinez were at
the same party Whittle was
attending near 800 East and
Kensington Avenue about the time of
A Sept. 26, 1989, Salt Lake
City police report quotes Martinez
as saying he was with Hambleton
before she disappeared.
But Salt Lake City police said
this week that no evidence links
Strong's murder to Hambleton's.
"Nothing we've been able to find at
this point has established that
relationship," Baird said.
Ala. -- Murder warrants were
issued today (Dec. 19, 2003) in the
death of Victoria Monette.
Monette was just a few days short
of her third birthday when she was
taken to the hospital suffering
from head trauma and severe burns
over 80 percent of her body. She
died a few days later.
At the time of her injuries,
Monette was under the care of
29-year-old Michael Kevin Meyers, a
convicted sex offender and
boyfriend of Victoria's mother,
Barbara Kristin Reid.
Reid, age 23, was charged today in
the murder and is currently being
held in the Jefferon County Jail
under a $50,000 bond. Meyers was
already in jail on a charge of "sex
offender residing with child."
He is being held under no bond. He
has now been charged with Monette's
murder under a $50,000
bond on the new charge.
16 17 18