Cold Blooded Killers, p.1R. J. Parker
By RJ Parker
Copyright © 2013
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The following stories of vile and malicious activities were gleaned from a variety of resources. They show the murky depths to which a human being can and will succumb. The people featured in this book are the dregs of society and are gathered here in this book like so much sewage at a treatment plant.
Internationally acclaimed bestselling author RJ Parker is most well known for his books, TOP CASES of The FBI (Winner of the World Book Awards 2012), Unsolved Serial Killings and Women Who Kill. He has seven true crime books available in eBook, paperback and audiobook formats.
Canadian Author RJ Parker was born and raised in Newfoundland and now resides in Oshawa and Newfoundland, Canada. RJ started writing after becoming disabled with Anklyosing Spondylitis eight years ago, but only recently published. He spent 30 years in various facets of Government and has two professional designations. RJ is a proud dad of two girls, as well as twin sons. RJ also consults with Police Departments when requested.
To date, RJ has donated over 1,500 books to allied troops serving overseas and to our wounded warriors recovering in Naval and Army hospitals all over the world.
Other True Crime e-books by this Author
Available in eBooks, Audiobooks and Paperbacks
Unsolved Serial Killings
Women Who Kill
Top Cases of The FBI
Serial Killer Series Boxed Set (4 in 1)
Doctors Who Killed
The term Patricide refers to a child killing their father. The term Matricide refers to a child killing their mother and the term Parricide references a child killing both of his or her parents.
What type of child is capable of such an act of violence against a parent and under what circumstances could this happen? The literature suggests that these are neglected and abused children, more commonly, teenagers, who feel trapped with few options. They have had enough and they feel there is no other way out. Children cannot simply leave a bad situation as the law does not allow youths to run away and if caught, they will be returned to their legal guardian. Some do run away successfully but then find it difficult to survive on the streets with limited resources, limited skills, and insufficient money.
In many instances, parents grow dependent on the adolescence and the child has too many responsibilities looking after the household and their parents. Children going through adolescence need the support of their parents as it is an altering time in their lives.
The children who commit parricide are either the harshly abused child who is pushed beyond his or her limits, or the ruthlessly, mentally ill child or the severely rebellious child.
The abused child is the most commonly encountered kind of killer. They killed because they could no longer contend with their surroundings at home. These children were severely abused by one or both parents and repeatedly suffered sexual, physical, and verbal mistreatment as well. Classically, they do not have histories of severe mental illness or grave and extensive antisocial behavior. They are not criminally stylish. However, for them, the killings symbolize an act of desperation.
The ruthless mentally ill child can kill on occasion. These children have lost contact with reality and their medical records will indicate that prior psychiatric treatments have failed. In most cases, they are deemed unfit to stand trial due to insanity.
There have been few children who have killed without remorse and yet their parents were kind and loving. This dangerously antisocial child is frequently the silage of news captions. These young offenders characteristically display improper conduct and severe disorderly behavior that continues for several months.
These are the children that kill their parents solely for some kind of self-seeking reasons.
Few severely abused children actually kill their parents. But most are at a high risk of becoming negligent or socially dependent rather than children who are treated well by concerned parents or loving guardians. Most often, the damage relinquished because of child abuse does not manifest itself until a generation later.
The undeniable realities and effects of child abuse are increasingly being recognized as the responsibility of everyone in the culture. Yet society has failed these children. It has failed to make a sufficient commitment to all children. It has clearly failed to protect these children and it has failed to foster good parenting.
Parenting skills and parental support are areas that desperately need attention. Education needs to be made available to help parents cope with the stresses of raising children, particularly young parents or parents of children with special needs. Research shows that increasing the knowledge of parents about home and child management, and enhancing the development of good communication skills, healthy emotional ties, and parent-child bonding helps prevent child abuse.
- 1 - Bryan and David Freeman
Dennis and Brenda Freeman
Discovery of the bodies
On February 27, 1995 the Police discovered the bludgeoned bodies of Dennis Freeman, 54, his wife Brenda, 48 and their son Eric, 11 in their Salisbury, PA home. The immediate suspects were the older children, Bryan, 17, and David, 16, who had shaved and tattooed their heads as a symbol of their Neo-Nazi beliefs.
Dennis Freeman was a High School Custodian and Brenda a Homemaker. They were devout Jehovah Witnesses and raised their children according to the strict rules of their beliefs, which included: no birthday celebrations, no voting, no participation in any form of military, and no recognition of national holidays. The older boys resented it deeply. When Bryan took an interest in joining the military, his parents first noticed the trouble with their son and his anger issues. They tried various programs in dealing with Bryan's anger, but several times he threatened to kill them.
On February 27, 1995 his threats would become reality. Early that afternoon Brenda's sister Valerie arrived at the family home to find the front and back doors locked, and also the garage door. However since Dennis's truck was in the driveway she assumed he was home. She found the sliding door on the side of the house unlocked so she entered but found the house to be cool and unusually quiet. She slowly walked to Erik's closed bedroom door. It was then that she knew something was wrong and a feeling of dread came over her. She hesitantly opened Erik's door and was faced with her nephew’s blood-splattered body. She silently bit back a scream and proceeded to the master bedroom where she came upon another body lying on a blood-soaked bed.
Erik Freeman, age 11
Valerie ran from the house to a neighbor's and phoned the police. Officer Michael Pochran responded first at the scene but before entering the house he called for backup. The first thing the police discovered upon entering the house was a bloody aluminum baseball bat, leaning against the dining room cabinet. In the master bedroom they found Dennis, beaten to death: his face and head were smashed in and his brains were exposed and his neck was slashed. The second victim, 11 year old Erik was on his bed, bloody and bashed. Apparently they hated their young brother Erik just as much as their parents because he didn't resist their parent’s teachings.
They searched each room but couldn't f
As the house began to fill with Police Officers and Homicide Detectives, it was clear that Bryan and David were missing and so was the family car. Given their reputation as white supremacists and their history of aggression, the hunt was on to find these boys and their cousin Nelson Birdwell III, whom they were known to associate with.
Background on the killers
David Freeman, age 16
David was 6' 3” and weighed 245 pounds. He had tattooed Sieg Heil on his forehead and Bryan had Berzerker on his. Their classmates, teachers and friends confirmed that they were impressive and threatening but students also said they were well respected. In 1992, David was in and out of various rehabilitation centers for substance abuse. He was eventually committed to a hospital where he stayed for one month. The doctors evaluated him and determined him to be of above-average intelligence but with an antisocial personality disorder.
Bryan Freeman, age 17
Bryan was 6' and 215 pounds at the time of his arrest. He was known to be more polite and intelligent than his brother and even made the honor roll in school. But, he too experimented with drugs and was in and out of treatment centers. It was in one of these centers where another boy encouraged him to join the skinheads.
Skinheads are a despotic youth movement which sanctifies violence as a means to attain political domination. Their objectives are a clutter of slogans including defending the white race and building white pride. They are open in their expressions of anti-Jewish, anti-black, anti-gay, anti-Hispanic, anti-Asian, and anti-immigrants. Their name originally came from their shaved heads, although currently most let their hair grow to lessen their visibility. Tattoos are also part of Skinhead appearance and members decorate their bodies with tattoos of white power slogans and symbols such as swastikas. Nazi regalia such as the Iron Cross and the SS badge are also part of their distinctive clothing.
So upon his return home, Bryan encouraged David to get involved in the skinheads and after attending several meetings they decided to form their own group with their cousin Benny Birdwell. Early in the investigation, Police were able to learn from schoolmates about Bryan's and David's association with Skinheads and that they bragged about decapitating a cat and worshipping its body.
Nelson (Benny) Birdwell III, age 18
The three boys shaved their heads, got tattoos and proclaimed their loyalty to the white supremacist movement. Bryan was enraged that his parents continued to place him in treatment facilities as he viewed these places as 'mental institutes'. David soon adopted the same behavior and attitude toward his parents. Both would terrorize their brother Erik who they considered a wimp and a momma's boy. They also terrified the parents. The parents tried tough-love by taking things from their sons. This enraged them even more. Brenda sold her sons cars...the boys in turn tattooed their heads. Brenda and Dennis stripped all paraphernalia pertaining to hate from their sons rooms. It was during the removal of Nazi posters and pamphlets they discovered a book about killing ones parents. This was just three weeks before they were killed. On February 23, two days prior to the killing, they were overheard saying that they were going to kill their mother. David was also suspended from school for getting into an altercation which erupted into threats of violence against the principal.
After interviewing Harry Liste, a classmate, the Police learned that the brothers had mentioned killing their parents and heading to Florida but the trio in fact went west to Michigan. A truck driver heard about the murders and the descriptions of the three boys and called authorities indicating they were at the Truck World Motor Inn in Hubbard, Ohio. A videotape from a nearby grocery store also captured the boy’s picture. This video was sent back to the Allentown police department where the suspects were positively identified by outraged family members.
Unfortunately, by the time police arrived, they were long gone. But, they had made phone calls from the Inn to Frank Hesse, another skinhead, in Hope, Michigan. The day they arrived in Michigan, some six hundred miles from home, they decided to go ice fishing with their friend. While they were gone, S.W.A.T. Members from the Michigan State Police along with assistance from the FBI surrounded the house. Upon their return at 6:00 pm from fishing, they were apprehended.
David and Bryan Freeman had previously decided that if they were caught, they would take the fall instead of their cousin Benny. They assumed that they would be tried as juveniles, and Benny would be tried as an adult. So David waived his right to a lawyer and offered up a statement.
According to David the evening before the bodies were discovered, all three of the boys went to the movies where they saw 'Murder in the First' and then returned home at 10:30pm. He said that both Dennis and Erik were asleep however Brenda had waited up for them. They climbed through the basement window and were in the process of calling some friends to go drinking when their mother heard them. She came downstairs to tell the boys to go to bed and Benny to go home. Benny obeyed but never went home. It's reported that Brenda came down three times and asked Benny to leave and each time he would crawl out the window but return. The third time is when the murders took place. David said that Brenda and Bryan were yelling at each other and that he really never witnessed what actually happened. He did implicate his brother Bryan in the killing of his mother. He said that Bryan threatened to stab both him and Benny and then ordered them to go upstairs and get their father and brother. David admitted to killing his father Dennis and brother Erik and said that Benny just watched, following from one room to the other, but never participating in the murders. They placed the baseball bat in the dining room and the knives in the kitchen sink, changed their clothes and left the house. While the detectives listened to David's story, Benny was telling other investigators a whole different story.
Benny's parents arrived to be with him in Michigan after he was arrested. They were very distraught as Benny was not a troublesome child and appeared to be an all-around nice kid. Benny reiterated about going to Wendy's, then the movies and then returning home. He also confirmed that Brenda came downstairs repeatedly and asked him to go home and that he pretended to leave and came back each time. When questioned about the murders, he said that Bryan and Brenda were screaming at each other and Bryan stabbed Brenda in the back as she was leaving to go upstairs. She pulled the knife out of her back and attacked Bryan. They fought over the knife and Bryan eventually stabbed her in the shoulder. When she screamed this time, Bryan forced a pair of shorts into her mouth so that she wouldn't wake Dennis. After a few minutes she laid still.
He said that Bryan and Dennis went upstairs to kill Dennis and Erik and that he remained in the basement. He was called upstairs after the other two killings and saw that Bryan was covered in blood and went to change his clothes. David didn't look bloody but went out to the backyard and vomited. They took all the cash, about $200 out of Dennis's wallet, argued in the car about where to go and eventually deciding on going to a friend’s farm in Michigan. They contemplated going back and staging the scene to look like a robbery gone bad but heard the news on the radio so it was already too late.
Bryan and David read an article in the Midland News and felt that Benny was putting all the blame on them so they decided to retaliate. Before Bryan gave a statement for the first time, he requested certain conditions: he wanted a lawyer for him and his brother, he wanted the death penalty taken off the table and they wanted to give an interview to a reporter of their choosing. The deal was approved by the prosecution.
Bryan told a similar story but with more details and admitting his own involvement in the murders. He confessed that after he killed his mother, Benny used the handle of a pic
The three boys were extradited back to Allentown and taken to the Lehigh County Jail where they were each officially charged. The arraignment for the brothers was on April 26. The Coroner was first to be called and his testimony confirmed the following.
Dennis had been killed first, struck six times on the head, seven times on the chest which fractured the breastbone and ribs. He had fractures on the neck, eye sockets, nose and jaw. The brain had actually protruded through the skull. He had been struck with two different weapons indicating there were two different attackers. The cause of death was extreme brain trauma.
Brenda was the next to die and her death was caused by multiple stab wounds. She was stabbed through the heart and lung plus the right scapula and a shoulder stabbing that was 5 inches deep.
Erik died from excessive head injuries. He was beaten on his head, face, torso and arms. The fractures and bruises on his arms indicated that he tried to defend himself from the aluminum bat.
The prosecution again announced that if the boys admitted to first-degree murder they would receive life in prison and not the death penalty. Both declined as their lawyers again thought they would be tried as juveniles. But as time went by, it was evident that if the lawyers continued to press for a juvenile trial, they would likely lose and then their strategy would be revealed to the prosecution.
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