STATEN ISLAND, NY – I’m just getting back from vacation and behind on the news, so I’m just going to post some stories I found interesting, starting with the 15-year-old high school freshman who jumped in front of a train last week because she was tired of being bullied by members of her high school’s football team.
Felicia Garcia, a 15-year-old student at Tottenville High School, was being picked on because of rumors that she slept with multiple members of the football team at a party held after a game. After school administrators heard about the rumors, they met with Garcia and the 17-year-old boy who was singled out as the main instigator.
Reports are that the meeting ended with Garcia running out while shouting at the boy. Her friends say that Garcia normally didn’t let the bullying bother her. She’d already had a tough life with her parents dying when she was young and being bounced between foster homes after running away from her aunt’s home to be with an older man.…
HUNTSVILLE, TX – Police in Texas say a 10-year-old boy was at home when he shot his sister and then fatally shot himself.
Sheriff’s deputies said that sometime late Thursday, Coby Tucker walked into his 15-year-old sister’s bedroom and shot her multiple times with a small caliber handgun before turning the gun on himself. The siblings’ father was at work at the time, but their mother was downstairs and called 911 after hearing the first shots.
Coby and his sister, Ashley, were flown to the hospital were Coby was pronounced dead. Ashley underwent surgery and is currently listed in good condition. At this time, police do not have a motive. “We have not been able to talk to the girl because she was in surgery this morning,” Detective Greg Williams said. “It is still early in the investigation, and we are not sure why this happened.”
Police did say they think that Cody got the handgun from a locked gun safe in the home and that, at this time, no charges will be filed against the parents. …
WILKES-BARRE, PA – In the comment section of a recent teen suicide we reported on, the subject of suicides being contagious came up. I didn’t know it at the time, but Luzerne County has lost four teenagers to suicide in the last week, all within 30 miles of each other.
If there are any inaccuracies with the following details, I apologize. I had to read about fifteen different articles and a ton of comments just to hash everything out.
On Sept. 18, 13-year-old Joshuah Delos Santos from Nanticoke shot himself. Bullying seems to be involved, although officials say they have not seen any proof of that. But over at the Joshuah Delos Santos Memorial Fund, his cousin reportedly stated otherwise. “The morning of September 18, 2012, my cousin Joshuah Allen Delos Santos decided to end his life because he was being bullied,” she said. Comments on a Facebook tribute page echoed her claims.
On Sept. 21, in Jenkins Township, 16-year-old Matthew Montagna used a hunting rifle to kill himself at his home.…
STILLWATER, OK – Yesterday, 13-year-old Cade Poulos came to Stillwater Junior High School dressed as the Batman villain Two Face, then used a handgun to kill himself in a hallway full of fellow students.
Poulos was in the crowded hallway at around 7:50 a.m. Wednesday. It was Super-Hero Dress Up Day at the school, and for reasons unknown, Poulos arrived dressed as a villain. It was during a prayer time before the morning bell sounded that Poulos pulled out a handgun and shot himself in the head.
Immediately after the shooting, the school was locked down, students were evacuated, and parents were asked to pick up their children via a district messaging system.
Initial reports were hinting at bullying as the reason for the teen’s decision to commit suicide, possibly because of some statements made on a Facebook memorial. But Stillwater superintendent Ann Caine said the district had no records of Poulos being bullied and his family have also stated that Poulus was not a victim of bullying.
Whatever the reason was, we may never know what caused Poulos to kill himself in front of his peers.…
MUNCIE, Ind. – Police in Indiana have arrested a woman after they say she drove her 16-year-old to attempt suicide and helped ensure the attempt was a success.
Sabrina Howard, 40, of Muncie has been charged with neglect of a dependent and causing suicide, both felonies, after investigators say she caused her suicidal son to take a handful of her prescription medication, then failed to render aid.
Police say that on July 10, Howard confronted her son, Charles Howard, about 20 missing Xanax, and 26 missing Lortabs. She said her son denied taking them, but that he had “slow speech” and appeared “groggy.” Before he fell asleep on the couch, she warned him that if he had consumed that amount, then he had taken enough to kill him.
Despite this, Howard did not call for help and left him sleeping on the couch. She told investigators she would check on him periodically, but called 911 eight hours later when she noticed he was not breathing and had turned an unnatural shade of gray.…
Santa Ana, CA - A California professor, grief-stricken over the recent suicide of his high school son, was allegedly plotting a rampage at the high school where his son attended, planning to kill teachers and administrators before burning down the building.
Rainer Reinscheid, a professor at the University of California for the last 12 years, has been charged with setting five fires on the campus of University High School, in Mason Park Preserve, and at a school administrator’s home. It was after he was released on bond that investigators found these fires may have been the beginning of a much more sinister plot.
They say that e-mails found on Reinscheid’s cell phone contained a detailed mass murder plot against University High School.
“He is accused of writing a graphic, detailed emails,” Orange County Deputy District Attorney Andrew Katz told MyFoxLA.com, “In which he laid out plans to purchase guns, murder unnamed students and named administrators, burn the school to the ground, commit acts of sexual assault and kill himself.”
Investigators say the motive may have been revenge against the people he felt responsible for his 14-year-old son’s suicide in March.…
MODESTO, CA - A 68-year-old felony sex crime suspect has died after repeatedly stabbing himself in the neck before being shot by police earlier this month.
On July 12, David Mendez was visited by a uniformed officer and Detective Steve Anderson, who works on the Special Victims Unit. Mendez was a suspect in a sex crime and Anderson had interviewed Mendez previously. He was there today, with the other officer, to arrest Mendez.
Mendez answered the door and briefly spoke with the two men. He said he knew he would be arrested after they had completed their investigation and that he had written a confession. Mendez then walked to a nearby desk and retrieved a 12-inch “diver’s knife” that he used to repeatedly stab himself in the neck. According to Lt. Rick Armendariz, Mendez “repeatedly thrust the knife in and out, holding the knife with both his hands.”
Refusing to obey the officer’s demand to stop doing that, Mendez was Tased. This did not prove to be effective and Mendez continued to stab himself.…
According to Bay 9 News, Thorin Montgomery was with some friends on the back porch of his home playing Russian Roulette with a .38-caliber handgun. Thorin was the first to go, and much to the relief of everyone else playing, Darwin stopped by for a visit.
The gun discharged, the bullet striking Thorin in the head. He didn’t die right away, but would do so later after being airlifted by helicopter to Bayfront Medical Center in very critical condition.
The other morons playing the game with Thorin – ages 19, 18 and 16 – have not been identified.
“I’m shocked to find out they’re stupid enough to play that game,” said one neighbor, who obviously does not read D’D . “Kids nowadays, with them playing with guns the way they do, there’s no reason for that.”
An autopsy has been scheduled to determine the exact cause of Thorin’s death.…
BURLINGTON, Vt. - A woman is dead after she purchased $5 worth of gas at a Vermont gas station, then used it to set herself on fire.
According to a clerk at the Champlain Farms Shell gas station, the woman came into the store and prepaid for the gas. She also placed her I.D. on the counter and said she didn’t need it any longer. When she went back out to the pumps where her gold Subaru Forester was sitting, the store employees watched as the woman removed the hose from the gas pump and began dousing herself with gasoline.
Probably because women do this all the time, the store manager immediately shut off the pump from inside the store. But the employees quickly realized this wasn’t another case of a woman not knowing how to put the doohickey into the whatchamacallit when the woman struck a match and set herself on fire.
The store manager and some customers ran out and tried to put the woman out with fire extinguishers, but the woman had already achieved her goal of self-immolation.…
Brescia, Italy – An Italian man solved his unemployment woes by jumping to his death after chucking his two young children off a sixth-floor balcony.
According to reports, 41-year-old Marco Turrini had lost his job at an advertising company 18-months ago and had been having problems finding employment.
Growing more depressed and despondent over lack of income, he reached a breaking point the other day following an argument with his wife that was heard by neighbors.
That’s when he grabbed their two kids, 14-month-old Benedetta and 4-year-old Samuele, and tossed them off the balcony of their sixth-floor apartment. After unsuccessfully trying to push his wife through a window, Turrini jumped to his death.
Turrini died instantly, but his daughter and son survived the landing, only to die later at the hospital.
Turrini had no history of violence, nor did he have a criminal record, but friends and family say he feared losing his wife and his home as his financial crisis worsened. Adding to all of this, Turrini’s father committed suicide last year by hanging himself.…
Denver, CO – A 30-year-old Yale-educated researcher hung himself in his cell after being arrested in March for soliciting sex with children.
An undercover agent targeted Yaron Segal due to his frequent appearance in chat rooms featuring terms like “childslavesex” and “ChildRapeTortureBrutality.” According to an arrest affidavit, investigators traced his handle “ruthlessmale” to New Haven, Connecticut, then to Cambridge, and then to Segal.
The undercover agent then engaged Segal, posed as a mother with two young girls, ages 12 and 16-years-old. Segal divulged his eagerness to have sex with the mother and children and was even willing to travel all the way to Colorado to meet them.
Segal became more and more outspoken, making phone calls and sending the “mother” links to online sex toy businesses. He expressed his craving to use a dildo on the twelve year old and sent emails with photos of vibrators he had purchased with the caption, “Those are some big c*cks.”
Segal, a postdoctoral assistant at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, would never get to use any of those items on the children as on March 28, after flying to Grand Junction to meet the woman, he was taken into custody by Homeland Security at the Grand Junction airport.…
SALT LAKE CITY, UT – Here’s a depressing one out of Utah where a woman has been charged with murdering her 18-year-old daughter while allegedly botching a suicide pact.
On March 21, 52-year-old Mary Ethyl Hansen drove to a neighbor’s home to tell them she had shot her daughter and asked if they could call 911.
When police arrived at Hansen’s home, they found her suffering from a non-fatal, self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. In one of the bedrooms they found the dead body of Hansen’s daughter, Virginia Ray Hansen. She had been shot twice in the head.
Hansen told officials that she and her daughter suffered from mental illness and wanted to die. She had just failed to honor her end of the agreement they supposedly made.
A friend of the family said that Hansen was living on Social Security benefits, had fibromyalgia and was having financial difficulties. her daughter had few friends and took online courses instead of going to school. According to the friend, the Hansen and her daughter spent most of their time together inside the house and rarely went out.…
CULVER CITY, CA – Not a lot of details yet, but reports are a woman in California was found dead inside a home with a chainsaw wound to the neck.
The woman’s body was found by her sister around 1 a.m. Thursday. Her name has not been released, but police have confirmed that the woman had a chainsaw wound to her neck and a possible suicide note was found beside her body.
However, at this point her death has not been officially ruled a suicide. No matter the cause — suicide, accident or murder — that is one violent way to die.
I’ll update the story as more details are released, but if you are interested in chainsaw related stories, we have a couple pages worth.…
JACKSONVILLE, FL - A teacher fired from a Florida religious school Tuesday morning returned later that day and killed the head of the school before killing himself.
Police said that shortly after 28-year-old Shane Schumerth was fired from his job as a Spanish teacher at Episcopal High School, he returned to campus with an AK-47 hidden in a guitar case.
He made his way to the administrative office where he shot the head of school, 63-year-old Dale Regan, multiple times before turning the gun on himself.
No word yet on why Schumerth was fired, but some students say he had to be escorted off campus. A parent of one of Schumerth’s students said that he rarely focused on the Spanish he was supposed to be teaching the students this semester.
“Over the last several weeks, he seemed dark,” said Rob Cantrell, whose son was in Schumerth’s class. “He repeatedly talked about the Communist Manifesto and Marxism. Something wasn’t right.”
“Something wasn’t right” seems to be the general consensus when people describe Schumerth.…
Sydney, Australia – The body found decomposing in a tree in Sydney has been positively identified as a missing American woman who allegedly committed suicide.
Residents living near an oak tree in Sydney had complained about the smell of something dead in the tree, but figured it was a possum or cat. They never suspected it was the decomposing body of 22-year-old Melissa Joy Dietzel, an American woman who had been missing for almost a month. I’m assuming the tree surgeon who found her body 30 ft up the tree didn’t suspect it either.
Dietzel was in Australia on a six-month working Visa that expired this May, working as a family’s live-in nanny. That family had to let Dietzel go after she refused to see doctors over her increasingly strange behavior and the fact that she was hearing voices. She told her host family that she had to get back to America anyway as the voices had told her that her parents were dying.
Her father commented on this Huffington Post article that after leaving that family, she went to stay with a friend but no one knows exactly when or why Dietzel chose to climb that particular tree.…
Mount Pleasant, SC – Police are still searching for the South Carolina woman who was reported missing hours before her fiancee was found dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Dara Lee Watson was last seen alive by her mother on February 6 when when she stopped for a visit with her fiancé, David Hedrick, at the family’s business in Boone, N.C.
According to Hedricks’ statements to police, he and Watson got into a fight later that same evening and that she had left the couple’s home the next day. he says that she has done this before after an argument but he is worried about her.
On February 8, Watson’s boss says he received a text message from Watson stating that she was fine. Watson’s sister would also receive a text message from Watson’s phone a few hours later. That same day, Watson’s burned out SUV would be found in Francis Marion National Forest, but the police there don’t connect it to the missing person case.
Broward, FL – On Saturday morning, a 52-year-old man died after he walked into a Florida shooting range, rented a gun, and then shot himself. When police went to his home to alert his wife, they found her dead inside the house.
Police say the man entered the Arizona Shooting Range & Emporium in Lauderdale Lakes at 10:18 a.m. and rented a gun. A short while later, he shot himself in the head while in the target-shooting area. He was pronounced dead at the hospital.
A detective arrived at his home a few hour later but could not get anyone to answer the door, even though his wife’s car was parked in the driveway. Because of the day’s earlier events, the detective entered the house and found the man’s wife dead in a bedroom. Investigators are calling the deaths a murder-suicide.
Last October, another man committed suicide at the same gun range, leaving suicide note in the parking lot. In August of 2010, we reported on a very similar story out of Florida where a 24-year-old man killed his girlfriend before going to the Gallery Gun Range and committing suicide.…
Walpole, NH – On Friday, a 14-year-old boy pulled out a shotgun while inside a school cafeteria and shot himself in the face. Surprisingly, the boy is currently still alive.
Police say Hunter Mack was upset over a relationship with a girl when he shot himself in the face with a 20-gauge shotgun at around 11 a.m. at Walpole Elementary. There were around 70 other students in the cafeteria at the time of the shooting.
On student told reporters that when one their friends noticed the gun Mack had hidden under his clothing and asked what it was for, that Mack stated he was “making things better” before shooting himself.
Mack was rushed to the hospital where he underwent emergency surgery for his significant facial injuries. His relatives say that his vital signs are good, but that he will have a challenging recovery.
Classes have resumed today and crisis response counselors will be available for students and staff.
All I can think of when I read the word “challenging” is James Vance, the guy who tried to kill himself with a shotgun blast to the head but only managed to blow off the lower half of his face.…