Wednesday, April 18, 2012


4. Jon Venables And Robert Thompson

Jon Venables and Robert Thompson (both 10 years old) had been stealing things all day at the shopping center - candy, a troll doll, some batteries, a can of blue paint, and other incidentals.

They boys approached James Bulger who had been wandering by the open door of the shop while his mother placed an orderand spoke to him, before taking him by the hand and leading him out of the precinct. This moment was captured on a CCTV camera recording timestamped at 15:42.

The boys took Bulger on a meandering 2.5-mile (4.0 km) walk across Liverpool to the Leeds and Liverpool Canal where he was dropped on his head and suffered injuries to his face. The boys joked about pushing Bulger into the canal. During the walk across Liverpool, the boys were seen by 38 people. Bulger had a bump on his forehead and was crying, but most bystanders did nothing to intervene, assuming that he was a younger brother. Two people challenged the older boys, but they claimed that Bulger was a younger brother or that he was lost and they were taking him to the local police station. At one point, the boys took Bulger into a pet shop, from which they were ejected. Eventually the boys arrived in the village of Walton, and with Walton Lane police station across the road facing them, they hesitated and led Bulger up a steep bank to a railway line near the disused Walton & Anfield railway station, close to Anfield Cemetery, where they began torturing him.

The video cameras at the mall caught several images of James Bulger in the hands of his killers, frozen in time. He was to be taken on a long, aimless walk, cruelly tortured along the way. James was senselessly abducted, tortured and beaten to death by his ten-year-old captors, who callously abandoned him on the railroad tracks. 

Before they left him, the boys laid Bulger across the railway tracks and weighted his head down with rubble, in the hope that a train would hit him and make his death appear to be an accident. 

The case's pathologist, stated that Bulger suffered so many injuries - 42 in total - that none could be isolated as the fatal blow.

3. Jesse Pomeroy

Jesse Harding Pomeroy was the youngest person convicted of the crime of murder in the first degree in the history of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Jesse Pomeroy was 14 when he was arrested in 1874 for the horrific murder of a four-year-old boy. He was quickly labeled “The Boston Boy Fiend.” 

His horrible trek had begun three years earlier with the sexual torture of seven other boys. For those crimes, Pomeroy was sentenced to a children’s reform school but was released early. Not long after, he mutilated and killed a 10-year-old girl who came into his mother’s store. A month later, he kidnapped 4-year-old Horace Mullen, took him to a swamp outside town and slashed him so savagely with a knife that he nearly decapitated him. Because of his strange appearance (he had a milky white eye) and his previous abhorrent behavior, he was under suspicion. When he was shown the body and asked if he’d done it, he responded with a nonchalant, “I suppose I did.” Then the girl was found buried in his mother’s cellar and he confessed to that murder, as well. 

He was convicted and sentenced to death. Following a public outcry against condemning children to death, his sentence was commuted to forty years of solitary confinement. 

2. Mary Bell

Mary Bell was convicted of strangling a young boy, Martin Brown, on May 25, 1968, the day before her 11th birthday. She was, as far as anyone knows, alone on this occasion. On July 31, 1968, Mary and her friend (Norma Bell - no relation to Mary) took part in the death, again by strangulation, of three-year-old Brian Howe. Police reports concluded that Mary Bell had gone back after killing him to carve an “N” into his stomach with a razor, this was then changed using the same razor but with a different hand to an “M”. Mary Bell also used a pair of scissors to cut off bits of Brian Howe’s hair and part of his genitals. As the girls were so young and their testimonies contradicted each other, it has never been entirely clear precisely what happened. 

Martin Brown’s death was initially ruled an accident as there was no evidence of foul play. Eventually, his death was linked with Brian Howe’s killing and in August, the two girls were charged with two counts of manslaughter. Mary was released in 1980 with court ordered anonymity. In 2003, the courts awarded her and her daughter anonymity for life.

1. Eric Harris And Dylan Klebold 
The rise of school shootings has been staggering over the past 15 years and they still leave many people ultimately wondering why? Most of the kids involved had been ridiculed one way or another by not only school mates, but also family members at home. These murderous children acquired large caliber weapons in most cases; though in others, knives, hand guns, or the like were brought in to their schools and use just as effectively. Teachers, faculty, and students loose their lives each and every time this happens.

On Tuesday, April 20, 1999, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, embarked on a massacre, killing 12 students and 1 teacher. They also injured 21 other students directly, and three people were injured while attempting to escape. The pair then committed suicide. It is the fourth-deadliest school massacre in United States history, after the 1927 Bath School disaster, 2007 Virginia Tech massacre, and the 1966 University of Texas massacre, and the deadliest for an American high school.

In the aftermath, a great deal of debate occurred about the killers' motivation and whether anything could have prevented the crime. Unlike some other school shootings, the fact that both shooters committed suicide made this one particularly difficult to assess. Answers were slow in coming. There were no arrests or trial through which the victims could vent their outrage.

This list is nothing but the tip of the ever-increasing iceberg...

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