A Texas teenager allegedly shot his mother and younger sister dead before calling 911 to recount the murders. Speaking in a soft, calm voice Jake Evans, 17, told the 911 operator he had been “kind of planning on killing for while now”, Fox News reports.
He said he had used a .22 revolver to kill his 15-year-old sister and 48-year-old mother in their Parker County home early Friday morning. (Click here for the full article)
Evans states that he didn’t know why he killed his mother and sister, however he did say; “I’ve been kind of planning on killing for a while now.”
According to Arrigo & Shipley (2005), these kinds of incidents don’t just come out of the blue – there are signs. These signs may be extremely obvious to an outsider, social worker or teacher etc, however may be more challenging to acknowledge by family members and close friends – written off as; “Oh, that’s just them.” In a lot of these kinds of cases though, the juvenile that appears to kill for no reason at all has in fact discussed their urges with someone previously, such as a counselor. In some way, these “advance confessions” could allow the troubled individual to go on to kill without worry as they “should have been stopped” or some similar excuse.
I’ll be interested to know if Jake Evans was already known to be a risk, whether he had discussed his urges with anyone. Hindsight can be 20/20 – however we want to develop a more accurate foresight – as I’ve mentioned previously, prevention is the best form of risk management. People are stereotypically more wary of outsiders, and yet some of the biggest threats can come from within the family unit. Here’s some interesting statistics:
– In 1988, 16% of all murders were committed again family members (in the US, Bureau of Justice Statistics). This was made up of:
- 6.5% by spouses
- 3.5% by parents (Children under 5 yrs old murdered between 1976-2000: 31% killed by fathers, 30% mothers, 23% male acquaintance, 7% other relative & only 3% strangers – leaving 6% unlisted)
- 1.9% by their children
- 1.5% sibling violence
- 2.6% victimised by other family members
– Between 1976 – 2000 11% of murders were done by an intimate (US Dept of Justice, 2002).
– 40% of all homicides in the US are the result of domestic violence (Browne & Herbert, 1997)
Bottom line, watch for the signs. A “healthy paranoia” is much better in my opinion than kicking yourself with 20/20 hindsight if you suspect anything is wrong.