It was the 15th of April, 2016, when police in Spalding, Lincolnshire, knocked on the front door of a semi-detached home on Dawson Avenue. It was the home of 49-year-old Elizabeth Edwards and her two daughters, 13-year-old Katie and 14-year-old Kim. Police were there after receiving a report that Katie and Kim had been absent from school. After receiving no response, police would break down the door and uncover a crime scene quite unlike anything that the small community had ever experienced beforehand.
Parents worldwide know the risks and fear that come with allowing their child to venture out into the world, but schools are supposed to offer parents a greater sense of security and a lot of parents feel very few worries about their children heading to school each morning. However, in 2004, a shocking murder instilled fear in parents across the world and led to many questioning: “Is my child really safe in school?” as well as: “Does my child really know their best friend?”
Summerfield is a small town just south of Ocala in Florida. In April of 2015, a man living in South East 53rd Avenue had been sitting on his porch late at night when he saw a boy fleeing from his neighbour’s home. He saw a number of other youths quickly run out after him, punch him, and drag him back inside. What he thought was a typical teenage beat down would turn out to be one of the most brutal crimes the area had ever seen.
Palmer is a small rural city in Matanuska-Sustina Valley in Alaska, around 42 miles northeast of Anchorage. It’s easily most known for the annual Alaska State Fair, where Palmer’s agricultural spirit lives on. It’s the type of city where almost everybody knows everybody else and the kind of place where people move so that they can feel safe. In 2016, however, the disappearance of a teenager and the subsequent investigation led to a shattered sense of security in the Valley.
Christine Paolilla was bullied at school because of her alopecia. She was taken under the wing of Rachael Koloroutis and Tiffany Rowell, who became her best friends. However, Christine soon turned to drugs and things in the friend circle took a grisly turn.
Greg Ousley, 14, had confided in his parents that he was feeling suicidal and homicidal. They shrugged it off as Greg "watching too many movies." Tragically, the decision not to seek help for their son would prove to be deadly. Days later, Greg crept into his parents' bedroom as they slept.
The Kobe Child Murders refers to a string of murders that took place in Kobe, Japan, between March and May of 1997. The murders sent shockwaves across the nation and was traumatic for residents of Kobe, many of whom had just been rebuilding their homes and lives that had been shattered by the earthquake that killed over 6,000 people in January of 1995.