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The Death of Bella Bond

I have compiled nearly 450 blogs on this site at this point. Without a doubt the most difficult have involved the deaths of children, which I have done many. It is even more difficult, emotionally, in cases such as this one. Any death of a child, criminal or not, is sad. We will never see what that child could have done in life; we will never see if those who had horrible childhoods could overcome things. I have a relative who lived the life of having an addict for a parent and while none of us are perfect in any way, the one thing that I admire most about her is the fact that she overcame her childhood; she learned lessons and broke the cycle. She has gone on to have a productive life and has been the parent to her children she did not have. That being said, not every child has that opportunity and in the worse cases one has to wonder which situation is worse, death or the continued abuse that they suffered when it seemed clear no one was saving this child.
On June 25, 2015 a w…

Sandi Dawn Nieves

I recently did a combined blog about mothers, Dora Buentrostro and Socorro Caro. They were both mothers in California that were convicted of murdering their children (three each) who would face trials while they continued to maintain that the father's of the children were the actual murderers and they were innocent. Both women were convicted and sentenced to death and remain on death row. The case of Sandi Dawn Nieves came in between those cases. While Dora Buentrostro committed her crime in October of 1994 she was convicted and the jury recommended the death sentence in July of 1998, one month after Sandi Nieves murdered her children. By the time Socorro Caro committed her crime in November of 1999 Buentrostro was sitting on death row and Sandi Nieves was awaiting trial, but she too was facing the death penalty.
According to prosecutors and even Sandi Nieves' surviving son, who was fourteen at the time, on the night of June 30, 1998 Sandi Nieves told her five children to …

Karla Faye Tucker

I belong to a few Facebook groups that deal with true crime and the other day Karla's name was mentioned asking members their thoughts on her case. I have always know a little about her but not the deep specifics and it just so happened that the next name on my list was Karla. In general after I search a case I will compose it but on occasion I will do a few others before I sit down to put them together. Many of the names on my list are in “groups.” What I mean by that is when I put them on a list I have often gotten the names from the same area. This particular group apparently came from a list of women executed in the United States. Although I researched Karla's case before Velma Barfield I decided to publish Velma's case first because she was the first woman executed after the reinstatement of the death penalty in 1976.... Karla was the second.
While so it is common for death row inmates to have a group of supporters, many simply because they are anti-death penal…

Margie "Velma" Barfield

Velma Barfield became famous not just because she was executed for her crime, but because she was the first woman executed by the United States after the Supreme Court reinstated the death penalty in 1976. In fact, at the time of her at least initial conviction, North Carolina did not even have a place for women on death row. In the end Velma was convicted and ultimately executed for the murder of one man but it is said she admitted to at least three more. Some say she admitted to five more but I found no evidence of this. Authorities do suspect or claim that she is likely responsible for the death of at least one of her husbands, despite Velma's denial.
In 1949 Velma married her first husband, Thomas Burke. After having two children she had to have a hysterectomy. It has been reported that it was around this time that she developed chronic back pain that led to a drug addiction that in turn changed her personality. On April 4, 1969 Thomas Burke died and while the circumst…

Dora Buentrostro and Socorro Caro

As I sat down today I planned to compile the Buentrostro case but instead thought that I would research the next one on my list. In the end I am doing something I do not believe I have done before. I am composing two different stories together not just because the similarities are so extensive but also because I think there is almost a bigger story behind the crimes, one that is often ignored, domestic violence from women.
We all know about domestic violence. It has been around for centuries. It was first often encouraged, then expected, sometimes even legal, and later often ignored. But most of us were raised in an era where it was believed that domestic violence only occurred from a man to a woman. It seems authorities did not start taking domestic violence serious until more like the 1980's. What began as a movement per se to curb domestic violence in turn became an new kind of ignorance. Shelters and help lines were created.... for women. Police officers were encoura…

The Murder of Denise Amber Lee

When I came across this name on my list I knew exactly who it was and I even triple checked to be sure I had not blogged about this case yet. It is one of those cases that have always stuck with me and I am surprised that in all this time I have failed to report on it. You may also notice that this is one of the cases where the name of the victim is in the title as opposed to the name of the perpetrator. It is not my intention to dismiss any victims when I am blogging but it is a sad reality that in most crimes it is the perpetrator that is more remembered, generally because of their court proceedings as well as the details of the crime. Then there are the cases where there are multiple perpetrators in which I will sometimes title the blog on the victim, but that is not the case here. This is one of those rare cases that as I said the crime and the events have stuck with me in a way that it almost seems wrong to give the perpetrator in this case one more ounce of recognition. I …

Steven Judy

I lived in Indianapolis, where this crime technically began, at the time that this occurred. I was very young but I still remember bits and pieces of it from the days in which they were attempting to solve the crime. Steven Judy became infamous in Indiana because of this crime. First there was the callousness of the crime because it involved the deaths of three young children. I could tell you that it was a heinous and brutal crime, and while it was, sadly by today's standards I am unsure it compares. Then there was the fact that not only did the prosecutors ask for the death penalty, but so did Steven Judy. In fact, he threatened the jury and the judge what would happen if they did not sentence him to death. Once getting his wish and being sentenced to death Steven Judy ordered his lawyers to end the automatic appeal that comes with a death sentence and he waived all subsequent appeals. On March 9, 1981 Steven Judy became not just the first person in Indiana, but also the …