A murder pact between two teenagers has resulted in a 12-year-old Weatherford girl allegedly shooting her father, and then herself, the Parker County Sheriff’s Office (PCSO) revealed on Facebook.
On Tuesday, Sept. 20, at around 11:30 p.m., deputies were called to a shooting, where they discovered a 12-year-old girl lying in the street with a gunshot wound to the head, and a handgun located beneath her, the PCSO report says. Her 38-year-old father was inside the home, suffering from a gunshot wound to the abdomen, the report adds.
Investigators believe the juvenile shot her father, then fled from the residence before shooting herself, the report says.
Parker County Sheriff’s Criminal Investigations Division (CID) discovered that the juvenile had been in contact with another teenage girl from Lufkin, TX, and both “had planned for several weeks” to murder their families and pets, though the Lufkin girl didn’t follow through with the plot, the report says. After the murders, the Weatherford girl was supposed to drive to Lufkin, pick up her friend, and the two planned on running away to Georgia, the report says.
Lufkin police are also investigating, and the Lufkin girl, whose age hasn’t been released, has been charged with criminal conspiracy to commit murder, the report says.
Names of the individuals involved in the case, including the adults, are not being released as the sheriff’s office does not identify juvenile suspects, the report says.
Both the Weatherford girl and her father were transported to hospital by air ambulance, though the conditions of either weren’t know as of Monday morning, according to CNN, who adds that it’s not clear if charges have been filed against the Weatherford girl.
On Sept. 28, CBS reported that the 12-year-old Weatherford girl died from her injuries. The girl’s 38-year-old father, who was shot in the abdomen, is expected to recover and has been released from hospital, CBS says.
A Rare Type of Murder
Parricide is a rare crime, accounting for only 2-4% of homicides worldwide (Holt, 2017; Sahin et al, 2016). It is even more rare for this crime to be committed by teenage girls, according to a 2020 study, “The typology of parricide and the role of mental illness: Data‐driven approach” (Lana Bojanić, Sandra Flynn, Myrsini Gianatsi, Navneet Kapur, Louis Appleby, Jenny Shaw).
The study says that adolescent offenders of parricide are more likely to have been abused, while adult offenders tend to suffer from severe mental illness. However, this study adds that Kathleen Heide, one of leading scholars on parricide, found mental illness can be found in all types of parricide offenders.
Heide outlined four types of parricide offenders in a 2015 article titled simply “Parricide”: the severely abused parricide offender, the severely mentally ill, the dangerously antisocial, and the enraged parricide offender.
Heide says the severely abused is “the most common one encountered among adolescent parricide offenders,” who have a long history of being abused.
“These youths kill the abusive parent because they are terrified and/or desperate to end the abuse. They see no other way to protect themselves or others, typically mothers and siblings,” Heide writes.
Adults who commit parricide often fall into the mentally ill category, though Heide notes that occasionally, teenagers and sometimes children have been recognized as “seriously mentally disturbed”. These offenders often suffer chronic and serious mental illness, many of which are diagnosed with “psychotic conditions on the schizophrenia spectrum”, Heide writes.
The 2020 typology study, however, found that offenders in this category were likely to be 25-years-old or younger, though adolescents still made up less than a 10th of offenders overall. Young offenders in this category are still likely to have been abused, the study says, noting that they tend to suffer from post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Dangerously antisocial offenders can also include adults or adolescents, Heide says, adding that they kill parents for “selfish, instrumental reasons.” She explains that the parents stand in the way of the offender getting what they want, such as money, freedom, or to date the person they want. A long history of antisocial and criminal behavior can be found in these offenders, Heide writes.
Enraged offenders, also inclusive of adults and adolescents, have poor impulse control and kill “when their deep-seated rage related to parental abuse and/or neglect was ignited by an external event”, Heide says. Some cases, she notes, have been fueled by alcohol or drug abuse.
A 1989 study by d’Orban and O’Connor noted that female offenders are more likely to murder their mothers than their fathers, but when they did kill their fathers, it was after years of severe abuse and tyrannical behavior. All three cases of patricide cited in the study found the offenders had been abused over many years, describing their fathers as “tyrannical, violent, and abusive.”
The study goes on to say that women who kill their mothers tend to do so after a toxic, hostile, and sometimes codependent relationship that soured over many years. All but one of the offenders had a “chronically disturbed” relationship with their mothers, the study says.
Out of the 17 women studied, 13 lived alone with the parent they murdered, the study says. Five of the women made a suicide attempt immediately following the murder, while three committed suicide in the months or years following the crime, the study adds, while calculating that 8.6 percent of female offenders commit suicide before being arrested.
The study also notes that the 14 women who killed their mothers were between 17 — 54-years-old, while those who murdered their fathers were betwen 18 — 26-years-old.