ojsimpson.jpgToday, a judge in Clark County Nevada sentenced O.J. Simpson to 15 years in prison for multiple counts related to an armed robbery that occurred there in September, 2007. Judge Jackie Glass called Simpson “arrogant” and “ignorant,” and stated that the evidence against the former football star was overwhelming. Simpson tried to apologize for the crime, but in the process he continually minimized the act, and Judge Glass was having none of that. She also ruled that Simpson can’t go free on bail while waiting for any appeals.

For anyone who followed the double-murder trial against O.J. Simpson back in the mid-1990s, this does feel like just desserts. Even the father of one of the victims of that crime, Ron Goldman’s father Fred Goldman (and his mustache), said today that he felt justice was done. When Fred said this, folks familiar with the case in the 90s (a link for you in case you lived in a cave then), knew exactly what he was talking about. He was just happy that a pathological narcissist like O.J. was now going to get a substantial amount of time in prison to sit and really think about all the golfing he could no longer do in his avid pursuit of the people who “really killed” his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and Ron Goldman. O.J. will likely be in protective custody as well, which sounds like a good thing — unless you understand that a guy like O.J. has always thrived on attention.

Nope. It’s official. O.J. Simpson’s real nightmare has just begun, and it couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy. For reaction from one of TCR’s sister blogs, see NudeCelebrityDeathSUV: “O.J. Simpson: Sentenced To Close To 20 Years … Now Go To Jail, Asshole.” [SportingNews.com/AP]

I blogged yesterday about the 4 teens accused of killing a “John Doe” in New Hill, NC. The Wake County NC Sheriff’s Office has confirmed today that the “John Doe” was indeed missing 18-year-old Matthew Josiah Silliman. Police still haven’t said how Silliman was killed, nor have they indicated what the motive may have been. Aadil Khan, Allegra Dahlquist, Ryan Hare and Drew Shaw are all being held without bond. [NewsObserver.com]


A goofy video made by murder suspect Aadil Khan. None of the other teens who appear in this video are thought to be involved in the alleged crime discussed below.

NEW HILL, NC — Matthew Josiah Silliman was only 18, but according to the Silver Alert issued for Matthew on November 26, 2008 he may have been suffering “from dementia or some other cognitive impairment.”

The 5’8″ teen was last seen in Apex, NC at an address on Oakgate Court.

Matthew Silliman may never come home again. WRAL TV published an online report this afternoon indicating that 4 teens were in custody in New Hill. The teens being questioned about a body that is currently being called John Doe. The kids in custody are 17-year-olds Aadil Shahid Khan and Allegra Rose Dahlquist, Ryan Patrick Hare, age 18, and Drew Logan Shaw, 16. While police haven’t said the John Doe is Matthew Silliman, Silliman’s parents told WRAL that they heard from police on Wednesday morning. The cops said that they had a crime scene on their hands inside a home on Olive Branch Lane, which looks to be about 12 miles from Matthew’s last location. They told the Sillimans that the scene “might be connected” to Matthew’s disappearance.

Khan, Dahlquist, Hare and Shaw will likely be charged with murder sometime today.

Of the teens in custody, Aadil Khan wins first position in the cybersleuthing lotto — his online presence was too extensive to ignore. His MySpace: AryanTemplar. Khan’s YouTube account: Xaryan13. That’s just two out of several.

I don’t know if Khan’s seeming embrace of Nazi-like words and imagery was intentional — he clearly stated on his profile that he was an anarchist, which is, (if we are to take a 17-year-old M. Night Shyamalan wannabe halfway seriously for a moment) a pretty anti-fascist way of life. Whatever the case, in his MySpace “About me,” Khan wrote:

i can start off by saying my name is Aadil Khan…translated from urdu (which is an Indo-Aryan language that is prominent in pakistan) it means Just Ruler (one who rules with justice)…which brings me to my next point…my name is misleading when it comes to what i’m really about…i believe in justice…but my own kind…i dont’t believe in any one person or many persons ruling over me…seeing how all people were created equal…y would i let someone equal to me rule over me…this brings me to my next thing…i am an anarchist…i believe in absolute freedom it is usually hard to place me in a social group simply because i dont really fit in one…im against the idea of social groups or cliques or whtever…they make ppl conform and restrict themselves too much and then they cannot be all they can be…i think people should be true to themselves and not be restricted like that…ppl have insulted me, made fun of me, but i proudly say that i am something that they’ll never be…and they can all go to hell because i could care less about them and their sorry ass lives… i usually get along with people, or end up hating them for all eternity (this has only really happened once…i usually tolerate ppl pretty well)…i don’t get into fights for a good reason…and i dont feel i have to justify myself so nobody is gonna ever get to kno :)

So the kid who now may be charged in some sort of murder plot had issues with rules. Somehow, there’s not much of a surprise there.

I don’t want to pick on Aadil Khan — there are three other alleged teen murderers to go. Like Allegra Dahlquist. With her mother, Allegra ran a “professional and loving pet sitter and dog walking” service in and around Cary, Apex, and West Raleigh. This was the website for the service: HoofandPawPetSitting.com. From the “About Us” page:

About Allegra: I am high school student at Apex High. I love animals! I’ve been around animals my entire life. We have always had dogs and cats, birds, the occasional ferret or hamster. Currently we have 2 dogs, 4 cats and 3 horses.

I started riding horses when I was 5. I spent seveal years riding hunters, and in the spring of 2006 switched to eventing. I love riding, especially eventing, and I work very hard to be the best rider I can. I also have an awesome trainer that makes each lesson a great learning experience. Hopefully one day I will be an Olympic rider.

I imagine the site will be gone soon, so check it out while you have a chance. Dahlquist, who also went by “Legra,” had another personal profile here: http://humanpets.com/809893008. Her MySpace page, screen name brain_dead_zombie, was private.

For his part, Drew Shaw — downwitdaclownz on MySpace — considered himself “basically just a down ass juggalo, you need someone fucked up, shit stolen, bud to smoke shit to drink im your boy hit me up if your tryin to do any of that shit for real i got your back homie, even if i just fuckin met you.” (Hey, Juggalos and Juggalettes — I’m just reporting what he said on his page — I know ICP doesn’t condone murder, so don’t start leaving the pissy comments, y’hear?)

Drew might have had his friends’ backs, but one friend didn’t necessarily have his back. On December 3, a “Cody Milligan” wrote the following on Drew Shaw’s MySpace page: “god damn drew you fucking idiot why the hell are being convicted of murder.”

As you might expect, Ryan Hare also had a MySpace profile, but he chose to make his private. His quote read, “I can imagine a world of love, peace, and no wars. Then I imagine myself attacking that place because they would never expect it.” Ryan Hare’s status said that he was “[Trying to heal] a little tired, a little stressed, a little bored, a little hurt, a little depressed, a little sore, still alot in love.”

So… we know that the (technically still) missing Matthew Josiah Silliman was somehow disabled. We know that alleged killer Aadil Khan was a self-styled anarchist and wannabe filmmaker. Alleged killer Allegra Dahlquist was a professional dogwalker and equestrienne with Olympic aspirations. Drew Shaw, if his MySpace page is accurate (always a good question), was a self-described juggalo (fan of Insane Clown Posse) who liked his bud and his buds. Ryan Hare was stressed, bored, hurt, etc…

But how did they all come together? How did “John Doe” end up in that abandoned house on Olive Lane? The real story is in the answers to questions like these.There will be a certain logic to it. Many who follow crime stories in the news will find it familiar. But no one will ever truly understand. [WRAL.com]

UPDATE

McClatchy News reported this evening that all 4 of the suspects — who have now been charged with murder — were Facebook friends with Matthew Silliman. I double-checked, and they were indeed among Silliman’s 142 friends on that social networking
site.

lauschumacher.jpgThanks to the estimable Henry K. Lee, who covers crime for the San Francisco Chronicle, we have this news: Caren Ramirez has been arrested. The 43-year-old Ramirez is said to be the aunt of the teenager who dramatically reported his alleged abuse and captivity by Michael Schumacher and Kelly Lau.

The teen, wearing only boxers and dragging a chain, entered a Tracy, CA gym earlier this week. He was emaciated. He’d been cut. He was bruised. He was utterly terrified. The Schumachers were arrested later the same day. They are suspected of having tortured and abused the boy for some time now — possibly as long as a year. Before that, Ramirez was charged with 4 counts of abuse against the same child. She received 5 years of probation for the charges, but the probation was over once Ramirez failed to show up for a hearing in April this year.

Also thanks to Mr. Lee, I found Lau’s MySpace page. No, the intrepid reporter didn’t violate any of his paper’s editorial policies — he simply quoted a line from Lau’s profile, which made the page pretty easy to find if you know your way around the Web.

Here was how Kelly Lau described herself in the “About Me” section of her page — some edits have been made to remove her childrens’ names:

30 yr. old mom of 4 beautiful kids […] Happily married to a man who I love to death. He is my best friend and a wonderful father to our 4 kids and I wouldn’t trade him for anything in this world. We live in Northern California where I am a stay at home mom and my husband is a Contractor. We have a typical life I guess-our oldest daughter is involved with Girl Scouts and […] is our Ballerina in training. My boys just kick back and wait there turn to do something fun. We have a dog named BUBBA and no white picket fence but our neighbor has one. LOL!!!!!!

Elsewhere in her profile, Kelly Lau wrote that she was a “hopeless romantic,” who loved the movies Gone With the Wind and Casablanca. Kelly also wrote about loving “the outdoors, camping, and spending time” with her kids.

Girl scouts, ballerina training and all for the Schumacher kids, and they were living in Tracy, which is one of the top 50 safest cities in the country. One of those places where every day is a “Chamber of Commerce” kind of day.

Awesome. Just one happy little suburban family who allegedly had a teenage whipping boy and slave stowed away in the laundry room or cellar somewhere. No wonder I’ve always found the suburbs so creepy. [Henry Lee’s article at SFGate.com]

truecrime.jpgFrom ye olde inbox, an e-mail from true crime scribe M. William Phelps:

I have been researching the Erin & Eric McLean case (teacher-student sex scandal turned deadly in Tenn.) for some time now and I’m interested in speaking with anyone connected to this case. I should be beginning a book project about this case after the first of the year.

I am also interested in touching base with anyone with information and/or a connection to any of the other high profile “teacher-student” sex scandals–Debbie Lafave, Pamela Rogers, Shannon Kay Hrozek, Pamela Diehl-Moore, et al–played out in the media over the past several years. My book will include a narrative analysis of many of these cases, too.

In a separate e-mail, Phelps wrote that “The McLean case exemplifies an important social problem taking place in this country today: female teachers crossing the line with their male students […] It’s an epidemic!”

This is, in essence a blog about news, and preferably stuff that’s going on right now. But here we’ve got a reputable and prolific author whom I know for a fact doesn’t just go for the clip job — Matt Phelps digs in, does his own interviews, buries himself in the story, and he delivers the goods. Writers like him will keep true crime books on the shelves as a well-defined genre for years to come.

Phelps is only beginning work on this story, and if there was ever a recent true crime story ripe for a good book-length treatment, it is the sad, strange tale of Erin and Eric McLean. It was a “high-profile” crime when it happened, but if you haven’t heard the story, read the brief synopsis after the jump…

smusilbuehler.jpgThis is the missing persons case that only gets more intriguing with each new update. Tests have proven that Sabine Musil-Buehler’s blood was indeed found in her car. Robert Corona was charged with stealing Musil-Buehler’s vehicle after the Florida motel owner vanished in early November this year. Corona told conflicting stories about acquiring the car, generally sticking to the one about finding it unlocked at a local bar. Corona is a logical suspect, but 49-year-old Musil-Buehler was also dating William Cumber, age 39. Cumber is interesting, too: he was convicted of burning down his girlfriend’s house in 2005. Just by coincidence (I’m sure), part of the motel Sabine Musil-Buehler co-owned with her estranged husband burned down about two weeks after she disappeared. I really need to see if Ann Rule is following this one. It’s right up her alley. [Bradenton.com]

schumachers.jpgWell, I told you yesterday about the teenager clad only in boxers and a chain who ran into a Tracy, California gym for shelter. The boy had clearly been abused and was, by all accounts, utterly terrified of his abusers coming to find him.

Thirty-year-old Kelly Lau Schumacher and her husband, Michael Schumacher, age 34, are the lovely pair arrested in connection with this bizarre and troubling story. Police also removed 4 children between the ages of 1 and 11 from the home.

The boy at the heart of this story was a runaway from a group foster home in Sacramento. He’d been missing since at least 2007. It isn’t clear how long he’s lived with the Schumachers.

The couple have been at the home on Tennis Lane in Tracy for a year or so, and during that time neighbors noticed the boy. They said that even though the family appeared to be “normal,” the teen wasn’t, in the words of one neighbor, “allowed to talk to us when we’d see him outside or ask him questions.”

Not my idea of normal, but hey — people have their own lives to lead, right?

Anyway — CNN reported today that police are now looking for Caren Ramirez, age 43. Ramirez may be the 17-year-old’s aunt.

According to the CNN article, the teen was removed from his parents’ home at some point during the last 2 years or so. He went to live with his aunt, but she was then charged with felony abuse. That was how the unfortunate kid ended up in the group home. In other words, he was being abused or failed by those who were supposed to take care of him at every turn.

He’s now being treated for malnutrition, cuts and bruises.

The connection between Ramirez and the Schumachers isn’t clear, at the moment.

Kelly Lau Schumacher and her husband Michael are in police custody, and facing multiple counts of kidnapping and torturing the boy. There’s no word on whether or not the State of California will have to answer for the obviously awesome job it did in taking care of this kid after it removed him from his home in the first place. [ABCNews.go.com]

  • genericrimescenephoto.jpgI bet we’ll hear a hell of a lot more about this story in the days to come. I immediately thought of Shawn Hornbeck. If you know that name, you’ll see what I mean.

Folks working out inside the InShape City gym in Tracy, California were undoubtedly startled on Monday afternoon when they saw a bruised, half-nude teen boy trailing a chain attached to one leg enter the facility and ask for help.

From there, things just got weird.

The 17-year-old said he’d been kidnapped and held hostage for a year. According to police in Tracy he looked it — they told local media that the kid “was emaciated, battered and bruised.”

The teen was taken to a local hospital.

Police have since arrested a man and woman in association with this bizarre case. They removed two children from the couples’ house on Tennis Lane in Tracy and took them into protective custody.

The unnamed 17-year-old told police he’d been held in that house, possibly since he ran away from a Sacramento group home a year ago.

Like I said — expect to hear more about this one soon. [CBS13.com]

Way too much rich food and some sort of stomach ailment later, I’m back from Thanksgiving with the news that Chicago Police now have an arrest warrant for William Balfour, age 27. Balfour is the estranged brother in law of singer/actress Jennifer Hudson, and he’s been the only suspect for weeks in the murders of Hudson’s mother, brother, and nephew. Balfour was already in custody, but he was officially arrested for the triple homicide earlier this afternoon. True Crime Report was the first to publish Balfour’s MySpace info when the story broke at the end of October. Check out Balfour’s MySpace here: “Flexamillion_1.” Wonder how hard he’ll have to “flex” in lockup now that he’s been accused of shooting a child in cold blood.
[SunTimes.com]

curtisvance.jpgUPDATE: See Curtis Lavelle Vance on Trial for Beating Anchorwoman Anne Pressly to Death.

ORIGINAL POST: Police in Little Rock, Arkansas suspect 28-year-old Curtis Lavelle Vance may have murdered Little Rock news anchor Anne Pressly. They say that Vance may be on the run tonight with Shenika Cooper, age 25, and perhaps as many as 3 children. The couple and children may be in a black, 1998 Oldsmobile sedan. Vance may also be armed with a 9 mm handgun. According to the AP, Vance has been charged with capital murder. [Fox16.com]