Before we go to the lists of teen psycho killers and their stories, we should know first the meaning of the word “PSYCHOPATH”.
When you think about children, you don’t tend to think about people with the ability to commit murder, do you? But kids can be kind of creepy when they aren’t totally adorable and fun, and throughout history children have committed some brutal murders.
For most people, the thought of a child killer sounds not only disturbing but impossible, and yet children commit these types of heinous and inexplicable crimes every day. The question one must ask is not why they do it, but how could they. How did psychopath kids disconnect from reality so completely that in one moment of their madness could go from being a playful children to a savage killer?
According to Leah Giarratano, all psychopaths are not killers, but there is still reason to fear them.
Some babies and children experienced terrible events upon developing personalities. Some of them will survive such events and go on to live happy, fulfilled lives. Others will develop any of a range of psychiatric disorders, including depression, anxiety and post traumatic stress disorder. And a very small group who are harmed during early childhood will nurture the violence in their minds, fantasizing upon it, biding their time, waiting for the opportunity to unleash all of that hate upon others.
The phrase was coined more than 200 years ago by Dr Philippe Pinel, who described this condition as ”madness without confusion”: these people are not insane. They are not driven by delusions or hallucinations. They know right from wrong. They just don’t care. Psychopaths enjoy what the rest of us consider abhorrent and heinous. They recognize the harmful consequences of their acts, but they’re incapable of feeling remorse, and concern for the victim is completely absent. They’re not immoral; they’re amoral.
Nowadays, the official diagnosis for this condition is antisocial personality disorder, although many in forensic settings still use the word psychopath. This is because there are two types of people with antisocial personality disorder: the primary type (emotionally void, deliberate and controlled – the psychopath) and secondary type (acts as a result of poor impulse control and may regret it later; capable of feeling guilt and empathy). Although around 80 per cent of prisoners meet criteria for antisocial personality disorder, only around 30 per cent of men, and up to 1 per cent of women, who meet the diagnosis have the cold and remorseless, predator-type psychopathy.
Are psychopaths born or bred?
For a true psychopath it’s both. There is increasing evidence that genetics/biology plays a major role in the creation of psychopaths. Just as illnesses like schizophrenia, alcoholism and even cancer can be inherited, predispositions to violence may also be passed down. In addition, some children seem to be born with lower levels of interpersonal connectivity – they seem from their earliest moments to be less likely to bond, to inter-relate well with others. They’re born with reduced empathy. They’re highly impulsive and don’t consider the consequences of their actions; they are unconcerned about punishment and social approval; and many have lower resting heart rates (making them prone to sensation seeking).
But a child is not born ”evil” – certain predispositions may be inherited, but our family and society shape the person we ultimately become. A child with these predispositions born to a healthy, loving family may grow up and become a ruthless business leader or a thrill-seeking, elite sportsperson. But if such a child is raised in an abusive home, they may create a monster – a true psychopath. If we look back into the childhoods of a violent psychopath, we find almost invariably a history of physical and/or sexual abuse and neglect.
Do all psychopaths end up being murderers or rapists?
Not all psychopaths kill or commit crimes. Some of them could be your co-workers or boss. They still go through life wreaking havoc, but of a different type. They will be serially unfaithful; they’re emotionally abusive and manipulative; they will take whatever they want without caring at all who they hurt. They lie, won’t accept responsibility and are good at getting out of trouble, and persuading others to do what they want. They’re also often dominant and arrogant, with an exaggerated sense of their abilities or influence.
And most murderers and rapists aren’t psychopaths. Most murders are crimes of passion – committed by people who are angry, jealous, enraged. These people fill our prisons, but when psychopaths kill they do it for fun; because they’re bored.
Can psychopaths be rehabilitated?
The most direct answer is that we have found no cure for an adult psychopath. Unlike almost every other psychiatric disorder, there are no treatment studies that show we can fix this disorder in adulthood.
Medication can control some of the impulsivity, and therapy that helps them to learn to control their actions is attempted, but they will only participate if they see stopping their behaviour as benefiting them. And mostly they don’t. They couldn’t care less what everyone else wants them to do or not do. They do exactly what they want. (http://www.smh.com.au)
List of Teen Psycho Killers
It can be very shocking to most people the idea that children or young people can become young serial killers. It is very important for us to apprehend these kinds of children before they managed to pile up the bodies and if possible reform them.
A FRESH-faced 14-year-old schoolgirl slit another’s throat telling her during the attack she was a psychopath looking for her first kill, according to US cops.
Kali Jade Bookey of New Richmond, near Minneapolis, has been charged with attempted first-degree intentional homicide following a brutal attack on her brother’s girlfriend.
Bookey has been charged as an adult which is why she has been named. She faces up to 40 years in prison if convicted.
She’s now being held without bail in juvenile custody pending a preliminary court hearing next week.
Deputies say they were called to the victim’s trailer and found her in a bedroom bleeding profusely.
The 15-year-old girl was taken by ambulance to a hospital where she is said to have told investigators exactly what happened when Bookey attacked her.
She clamied she was sleeping in her bedroom when Bookey, dressed in black, appeared in her room and put her hands over her mouth.
A struggle ensued and Bookey is said to have punched her in the face multiple times and broke two bowls over her head, , say detectives.
Bookey used one of the bowl shards to cut her and slit her throat, she told police.
The victim said Bookey asked her if she wanted to die or bleed out, so she opted to bleed out, the girl states.
According to the police report, Bookey told the victim she had been biking by her house and noting the times when she was alone, and she described herself as a crazy psychopath looking for her first kill, saying she probably would kill again.
Bookey then told her to “have a nice afterlife” and left the trailer.
She later said she hated the girl because the girl made her brother happier than she could.
Bookey is reported to have confirmed many of the details of the attack that investigators had learned from the girlfriend.
Authorities said Bookey told them she didn’t want the victim to die, but that she wanted her to pass out from blood loss so she could leave.
Bookey said she had been thinking about attacking the girlfriend for about a week and a half and planned out how she would do it during other bike rides.
Bookey’s mother, Dawn Bookey, told The Associated Press in a telephone interview that her family had no idea that her daughter was apparently plotting to attack the girlfriend.
“We had no clue,” the mother said.
“There were no signs. We’re all very, very sad.”
St Croix County Sheriff John Shilts said: “I can honestly say that I’ve never seen anything this…dark and this callous from kids of this age.
“The circumstances around this are almost beyond belief.” (www.thesun.co.uk)
2) Nathan Freudenthal Leopold, Jr. (November 19, 1904 – August 29, 1971) andRichard Albert Loeb (/ˈloʊb/; June 11, 1905 – January 28, 1936)
Usually referred to collectively as Leopold and Loeb, were two wealthy students at the University of Chicago who in May 1924 kidnapped and murdered 14-year-old Robert Franks in Chicago. They were both highly intelligent, privileged young college students who meticulously planned the murder, then went to great lengths to cover up their crime. The worst part was that they considered their killing an “experiment.” They committed the murder—widely characterized at the time as “the crime of the century”—as a demonstration of their perceived intellectual superiority, which, they thought, rendered them capable of carrying out a “perfect crime”, and absolved them of responsibility for their actions. The Leopold and Loeb case made defense lawyer Clarence Darrow famous, though both went to prison. Loeb was murdered behind bars. (wikipedia)
3) Mary Bell, 11-Year-Old Serial Killer, Scotswood, England, 1968
In 1968, when she was just eleven, Mary Bell strangled and killed two young boys, even going so far as to carve an “M” into one. She and another girl were tried, though it was the self-possessed Mary who was found guilty. (After the death of one boy, Mary showed up asking to see the boy in his coffin.) She went to prison but was released under a new name in 1980. (www.the-line-up.com)
4) JOSH PHILLIPS : A Life Behind Bars – Child Convicted For Life Without Parole
On the fateful day of November 3rd, 1998 two worlds would collide and forever be changed. A young girl would stand in the face of unimaginable evil never to return while a young boy would stand on the precipice of the abyss never to walk outside of a prison yard again. A vibrant 8 year old Maddie Clifton would be brutally murdered by a once friendly 14 year old Joshua Phillips and two families along with an entire community would be in a perpetual state of shock and suspended disbelief, until his trial would begin in July of that year. After a week of tirelessly searching for the missing girl they would now have to switch their focus to her murderers’ trial, who also happened to be a child. It was unfathomable that the very boy participating in her search, flashlight in hand, could have been her aggressor, and yet that is exactly what transpired.
Joshua had stored the dead body of a young neighbor girl under his bed and her corpse had been leaking blood and fluids for days. He said her initial injuries were an accident, but Philips was convicted and is still in prison today. Since he was under 16 at the time of his trial, he escaped the death penalty.
Josh was described by his mother as having, “An uncanny ability, even at a very young age, to know he was to play differently with little girls than he did with little boys. With little girls, he instinctively knew somehow that he was to be gentler in his play. When he played with little boys, it was rough and tumble play. I never knew how he grasped this concept from so early an age. And, he acted differently with adults, as well; relating on a more mature level with them than with the children.” So how does a once happy, intelligent and gentle little boy one day murder without what appears to be remorse, discernment or even cognizance of his actions? Something happened to Josh along his path to adolescence, whether it was as innocuous as a fall on the playground or as violent as being struck in the head by something, his brain no longer functioned the same way at 14 that it did at 3. (hubpages.com)
5) Jesse Pomeroy
Known as the “Boston Boy Fiend” Jesse Pomeroy started murdering at the age of 11 where he committee sexual torture to other boys. His killing wasn’t exclusive to boys since he was capable of killing girls. In was only in the year 1872 that he was arrested for his crimes and was sentenced to a reform school due to being a minor. Unfortunately he would commit more serial killings before he was caught in 1874 when the police suspected him of the killing of Horace Millen, a 4 year boy and instead found the remains of his other victim a 10 year old girl named Katie Curran. Jesse Pomeroy was tried and sentenced to death but was destined for life imprisonment instead. Jesse Pomeroy has the distinction of being the youngest person (he was 16 when imprisoned) convicted of first degree murder in Massachusetts. He murdered 10 victims. (http://www.top5stories.com)
6) Willie Bosket
In 1977, Willie Bosket killed two people, prompting New York to enact a law that allowed juveniles to be tried as adults.
If there is any indication that Willie Bosket would become a murderer and a serial killer is the fact that Willie was committing thousands of crimes while he was still a minor. It was only at the age of 16 that Willie Bosket committed his first murder and serial killing. Most of the killings committed by Bosket were done in New York’s subway. He and accomplice would kill and rob their victims. He was also a habitual law offender and he would be sentenced and incarcerated again and again. While young serial killers become adult serial killers Willie Bosket has never graduated from that level due to his imprisonment. He currently serves 25 years to life sentence in solitary confinement in Woodbourne Correctional Facility. (www.top5stories.com)
It was 38 years ago that a state law took effect allowing juveniles to be tried as adults, largely in response to Mr. Bosket’s slaying of two people on a New York subway when he was 15. He served only five years in jail for that crime because he was a juvenile, sparking public outrage. But shortly after completing his sentence, Mr. Bosket was arrested for assaulting a 72-year-old man.
He once claimed to be at “war” with prison officials. He said he laughed at the system and claimed to have committed more than 2,000 crimes as a child. He set fire to his cell and attacked guards. Mr. Bosket was sentenced to 25 years to life for stabbing a guard in the visitors’ room in 1988, along with other offenses, leading prison authorities to make him virtually the most restricted inmate in the state.
Now Mr. Bosket, who has gone 14 years without a disciplinary violation, does mainly three things: read, sleep and think.
“Just blank” is how Mr. Bosket described his existence during a recent interview at Woodbourne Correctional Facility, about 75 miles north of Manhattan. “Everything is the same every day. This is hell. Always has been.”
He is scheduled to remain isolated from the general prison population until 2046. (www.nytimes.com)
7) Edmund Kemper
As a child Edmund Kemper was very bright, but unfortunately he was psychopathic as evidenced by his cruelty to animals. He also showed disturbing behavior like bizarre sexual rituals and dark fantasies. This disturbing behavior alone should have been like warning that young Edmund was joining the lists of young serial killers. His first murder was that of his grandparents killing his grandmother first and his grandfather second. Kemper would continue to kill more people who were all female from May 1972 to April 1973. His modus operandi is to pick up his victims, take them to an isolated area where he would shoot, stab or smother them. Then he would take back their bodies to his apartment where he would rape their severed heads and dissect their bodies. His final victim would be his mother and her best friend. Currently he is an inmate of the California Medical Facility after he was tried and found not guilty due to insanity. (www.top5stories.com)
8) Eric Smith
Eric Smith is currently in jail for killing a four year old boy at the age of 13. Smith lured his victim to a wooded section of a local park, where he strangled him, dropped a rock on his head, and sexually abused his body. He claimed to be taking out his anger from torment he received at the hands of local bullies, but was also diagnosed with intermittent explosive disorder, which caused him to act out violently and explosively. Sentenced in 1994 to 9 years to life, Smith has been denied parole several times, with his parents supporting the decision to keep him incarcerated. (www.newsforants.com)
8) Jordan Brown
The 11-year-old Brown shot and killed his father’s pregnant fiancée, possibly out of jealousy.
Jordan Brown case involves Jordan Anthony Brown (born August 12, 1997), who at age 11 was initially charged as an adult in the fatal shooting of his father’s fiancée, Kenzie Marie Houk, 26, in Wampum, Pennsylvania, on February 20, 2009.
The county District Attorney’s Office initially filed the charges in adult court because that is required in Pennsylvania homicide cases regardless of a defendant’s age. The Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Office subsequently took over prosecution of the case. After Brown spent more than three years in a juvenile detention facility in Erie, Pennsylvania, while Pennsylvania courts deliberated his status, Brown was tried as a juvenile and adjudicated delinquent (guilty) on April 13, 2012. On May 8, 2013, Superior Court vacated the finding of delinquency, citing “palpable abuse of discretion”.
Houk was eight months pregnant when she was shot in the back of the head while she was sleeping in bed in their western Pennsylvania farmhouse. Both she and her unborn infant son died as a result of the attack. Houk’s 4-year-old daughter alerted nearby tree cutters roughly 45 minutes after Jordan Brown and Houk’s 7-year-old daughter got on a school bus. The state Attorney General prosecutor asserted that Houk was killed by a youth-model 20-gauge shotgun, a Christmas gift to Jordan from his father. Pennsylvania State Police found a spent shotgun shell near the path Brown walked with Houk’s older daughter to get to their school bus. (murderpedia.org)
9) Graham Young
As a teen, Young began experimenting with poison on his family members. His stepmother eventually died from complications related to the poisoned tea she’d been drinking. Young had long been obsessed with violence and poison, so it wasn’t surprising when he confessed to the crime. He was sent to a mental institute and classified as schizophrenic. He was released in 1970, only to go on to continue to poison his coworkers. Young died in 1990, but in 2005 a young Japanese girl poisoned her mother in a case related to a movie inspired by Young. The film A Young Poisoner’s Handbook is inspired by Young. (http://www.the-line-up.com)
10) William Heirens
One can consider William Heirens to be one of young serial killers that tend to appear though at the time the word “serial killer” was not coined yet instead it was referred to as “stranger killings”. Heirens killed only 3 victims all women, but at the time it was considered horrific when compared to recent serial killings since the public was not used to this kind of killing which seems to be done just for the sake of killing. Heirens was caught and confessed to his crimes which earned him a lifelong sentence of prison. William Heirens died on March 5, 2012 due to heart problems. (http://www.top5stories.com)