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9 Apr 2012

News to Novels #13

Recently in the UK we've had a news article about schoolboy Daniel Bartlam, 14, who beat his mother Jacqueline, 47, to death with a hammer and then set her on fire.  It was claimed he was fascinated by a plot on the soap Coronation Street.  In this particular story arc there was a serial killer named John Stape.  One of his victims was bludgeoned to death and Bartlam was obsessed with this character and his murders.  Naturally it's spurned the annual article: People murder because of violent TV! This is because of video games!
One newspaper went ahead with noting down cases where people have murdered in the similar style to a horror film and I thought they'd be interesting to note down this week.  If you're thinking of writing crime and looking for ideas here are some true murder cases.

The American Drama Series about a forensic expert who doubles as a serial killer inspires the murder of a ten year old boy by his brother.  Andrew Conley, 17, strangled Connor in 2009, then drove to a park and dumped his body.  He told detectives in Indiana, USA, that he modelled himself on the TV killer and had been 'hungry' to murder for years.  He said of the mass-murdering TV character: 'I feel just like him'.

A Clockwork Orange:
There have been many alleged copycat crimes linked to Stanley Kubrick's 1971 film.  First a 16 year old boy - wearing white overalls, a bowler hat and combat boots just like character Alex in the movie - beat a younger child.  Then in 1973 a gang of youths in Lancashire raped a 17 year old girl Dutch girl while they sang Singin' in the Rain - echoing another scene.  In 2010 Ruby Thomas, 18, kicked Ian Baynham, 62, to death in London in a homophobic attacked likened to the controversial film.

Queen of the Damned:
Allen Menzies, 22, beat his best pal to death, drank his blood, and ate part of his head.  Menzies had watched the film 100 times and claimed the character Queen Akasha told him to murder Thomas McKendrick, 21.  During his trial Menzies of Fauldhouse, West Lothian, claimed he had to carry out the killing to become a vampire.  He was sentenced to life in jail in 2003 but killed himself in prison a year later.

Two schoolboys brutally stabbed a 13 year old and left him for dead just hours after watching the horror film Scream.  Daniel Gill, 14, and Robert Fuller, 15, stabbed Ashley Murray 18 times in 1999.  He survived and was found 40 hours later at an isolated beauty spot outside Harrogate, North Yorkshire.

Other crime articles:

'Hero' is a murderer
A have-a-go hero who tackled an armed robber was last night starting a life jail term for murder.  Deivydas Jacikas, 21, was praised for stopping a jewel thief last year.  But eight months later he beat grandad Henrikas Baranauskas, 56.  The victim who had allegedly butted Jacikas' father suffered broken ribs and brain damage - and his family made the agonising decision to turn off his life support.  Jacikas, a Lithuanian of Peterborough admitted manslaughter but denied murder and was convicted at Cambridge Crown Court.  Police said he used extreme violence and 'showed no mercy'.

Killer Trucker
Trucker Robert Rhoades, 66, who had a torture dungeon in his lorry, got life for murdering a hitchhiking couple in Texas.


  1. A Clockwork Orange is the worst thing I have ever watched in my life. I cannot bear to hear Singin' In The Rain! It makes me shudder just thinking about it lol!

  2. The film was so disturbing. I wanted to watch it purely for Malcolm McDowell but I just ended up feeling very creeped out. Alex was just sickening.