03:13 PM EDT 03/11/2014
Originally posted 02/09/2014 12:30PM
An East Tennessee couple accused of killing the man's 5-year-old daughter by forcing her to drink large quantities of grape soda and water will face trial in October.
According to the Hawkins County Sheriff's Office and the autopsy report, Alexa Linboom was brought in to the emergency room on Jan. 1, 2012, by her father, Randall Vaughn, and his wife, Mary Vaughn.
The girl was blue and unresponsive with "an abnormal body posture that indicates severe brain damage," according to the autopsy, which was completed in July 2013.
The Vaughns were arraigned in Hawkins County on Friday. on charges of murder, abuse and neglect. According to the court clerk's office, the judge ordered that Mary Vaughn be represented by a public defender. Randall Vaughn will seek a private attorney. The couple did not enter a plea and are jailed on $500,000 bond each.
Originally posted 01/22/2014 08:00AM
After the recent arrests of Gerald and Alice Uden of Chadwick, Mo. – each charged with murdering their former spouses decades ago, and Gerald also charged and convicted with murdering his adopted sons – PEOPLE talks exclusively with Erica Hayes, the youngest of the couple's five surviving children, in this week's compelling new cover story.
Originally posted 01/15/2014 09:30AM
Social studies teacher John Masterson went above and beyond his classroom duties Tuesday when he talked a 12-year-old boy into putting down his weapons after the student went on a morning shooting spree at his school.
His bravery in disarming the shooter at Berrendo Middle School in Roswell, N.M., is being praised by both the state's governor and law enforcement, after Masterson intervened in the shooting, which injured two youths, including one critically, CNN reported.
"It's one thing for an armed state police officer to enter a school and do his or her job," said Pete Kassetas, chief of the state police. "It's another thing for a teacher, staff member to intervene in the situation like this."
Originally posted 01/08/2014 06:30AM
A popular soap-opera actress and former Miss Venezuela, 29-year-old Monica Spear surely could have afforded to vacation elsewhere.
Originally posted 12/18/2013 05:45PM
In life, Desta Byrd was a gorgeous woman who lit up a room. After her mysterious slaying in 1999, her beautiful face became the icon of a grassroots movement just south of Birmingham, Ala., where her friends posted billboards seeking "Justice for Desta."
Desta's supporters finally got their long-sought justice on Wednesday in a Centreville, Ala., courtroom, where Desta's husband, Jody Byrd, was sentenced to 99 years in prison for her murder.
The case sat unsolved for years, with little evidence to disprove the husband's claims that he found his wife lying next to the driveway when he got home from work on Feb. 25, 1999, dead from a single gunshot wound to the head.
Originally posted 12/10/2013 12:40PM
The murder trial of a Montana woman accused of pushing her new husband to his death began with the jury seeing a smiling Cody Johnson, looking dapper in a blue shirt and striped tie.
That photograph was replaced minutes later with one of Johnson's body lying face-down in a pool of water at the bottom of a cliff in Glacier National Park.
There were no witnesses to what happened the night of July 7, when Johnson and Jordan Graham argued over their 8-day-old marriage at a popular spot in the park, Assistant U.S. Attorney Kris McLean told jurors Monday in a Missoula, Mont., courtroom.
Originally posted 12/04/2013 02:50PM
Steven King II and Angela Steinfurth pleaded guilty Tuesday in the killing of her 18-month-old daughter, whose remains were found in a box in a garage three months after she was reported missing.
Prosecutors said the mother tossed the toddler across her bedroom in early June because she wouldn't stop crying, severely injuring the girl.
King, the 24-year-old ex-boyfriend, told a Toledo judge that he had found the girl, Elaina Steinfurth, injured in her bedroom and that he tried to resuscitate her. He said he then covered her mouth until she stopped breathing and put her in a bag.
The girl's remains were found in September in the rafters of a garage that belongs to King's family.
Originally posted 11/25/2013 05:45PM
Why Adam Lanza went on his murderous shooting rampage at a Newtown elementary school is a mystery and may never be known, prosecutors said Monday in a report that closed out their yearlong investigation.
Lanza, 20, was obsessed with mass murders and the 1999 Columbine High School shooting in particular, but investigators found no evidence he ever told others of his intentions to carry out such an attack, according to the summary report by the lead investigator, State's Attorney Stephen Sedensky III.
Lanza killed 20 first-graders and six educators with a semi-automatic rifle inside Sandy Hook Elementary School on Dec. 14. He also shot his mother to death inside their home before driving to the school, and committed suicide with a handgun as police arrived.
Originally posted 11/25/2013 08:30AM
In October 2009, Joseph McStay excitedly e-mailed a friend about the house he and his wife had purchased in the San Diego suburb of Fallbrook, Calif. He boasted it had a "loft/game room & big yard for kids to go crazy," referring to their rambunctious preschoolers, Gianni and Joe Jr. "Love it."
So when the family seemingly disappeared four months later without telling any relatives, friends or business associates, and their car turned up four days later at the Mexican border, many people who knew them feared the worst.
"My fear is that I'm looking for two adult shallow graves and ... my two nephews' crosses," Joseph's kid brother, Michael, told the Orange County Register a few weeks after the Feb. 4, 2010, disappearance.
Originally posted 11/23/2013 05:30PM
Is she a victim or a cold-blooded killer?
That's the question being asked about psychology professor Norma Patricia Esparza, who was taken into custody in Orange County, Calif., last week for the 1995 murder of Gonzalo Ramirez.
Prosecutors say that eight years ago, Esparza, then a student at Pomona College, went to a bar with a group that included her boyfriend and pointed out a man who she said had raped her.
That man's body was later found dumped on a nearby road.
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