Elyse Marie Pahler (April 24, 1980 – July 22, 1995) was a murder victim, whose parents attempted to sue the American thrash metal band Slayer, claiming that their music contributed to their daughter's death. Pahler was murdered in the summer of 1995.
Thrash metal is an extreme subgenre of heavy metal music characterized by its overall aggression and often fast tempo. The songs usually use fast percussive beats and low-register guitar riffs, overlaid with shredding-style lead work. The lyrics often deal with social issues and criticism of The Establishment, using direct and denunciatory language, an approach borrowed from hardcore punk.
Slayer is an American thrash metal band from Huntington Park, California. The band was formed in 1981 by vocalist and bassist Tom Araya and guitarists Kerry King and Jeff Hanneman. Slayer's fast and aggressive musical style made them one of the founding "big four" bands of thrash metal, alongside Metallica, Megadeth and Anthrax. Slayer's current lineup comprises King, Araya, drummer Paul Bostaph and guitarist Gary Holt. Hanneman and drummers Dave Lombardo and Jon Dette are former members of the band.
Fifteen-year-old Elyse Pahler's body was discovered near her home in Arroyo Grande, California, in March 1996. She had been raped and murdered there eight months earlier by acquaintances Jacob Delashmutt, Joseph Fiorella and Royce Casey. The perpetrators apparently returned to the corpse and had sex with it on several occasions. The body was located after Casey confessed to the crime following a conversion to Christianity. All three eventually pleaded no contest to her murder and are now imprisoned and serving 25 years to life.
California is a state in the Pacific Region of the United States. With 39.6 million residents, California is the most populous U.S. state and the third-largest by area. The state capital is Sacramento. The Greater Los Angeles Area and the San Francisco Bay Area are the nation's second- and fifth-most populous urban regions, with 18.7 million and 9.7 million residents respectively. Los Angeles is California's most populous city, and the country's second-most populous, after New York City. California also has the nation's most populous county, Los Angeles County, and its largest county by area, San Bernardino County. The City and County of San Francisco is both the country's second-most densely populated major city after New York City and the fifth-most densely populated county, behind only four of the five New York City boroughs.
Christianity is an Abrahamic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth, as described in the New Testament. Its adherents, known as Christians, believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and savior of all people, whose coming as the Messiah was prophesied in the Old Testament.
Nolo contendere is a legal term that comes from the Latin phrase for "I do not wish to contend" and it is also referred to as a plea of no contest.
The trio lured Elyse from her house with the stated intention of killing her as part of a satanic ritual, although the crime bears many of the hallmarks of similar sexually motivated murders. In their defense, the defendants said they had needed to commit a "sacrifice to the devil" in order to give their heavy metal band, Hatred, the "craziness" to "go professional".
A devil is the personification of evil as it is conceived in many and various cultures and religious traditions. It is seen as the objectification of a hostile and destructive force.
David and Lisanne Pahler claimed that the Slayer songs "Postmortem" and "Dead Skin Mask" (from the albums Reign in Blood and Seasons in the Abyss , respectively) gave the three killers detailed instructions to "stalk, rape, torture, murder and commit acts of necrophilia" on their daughter. The lawsuit was originally filed in 1996 but delayed until 2000 when the killers' trial was concluded. The initial case was originally thrown out, the judge stating, "There's not a legal position that could be taken that would make Slayer responsible for the girl's death. Where do you draw the line? You might as well start looking through the library at every book on the shelf."
Reign in Blood is the third studio album by American thrash metal band Slayer, released on October 7, 1986 by Def Jam Recordings. The album was the band's first collaboration with producer Rick Rubin, whose input helped the band's sound evolve. The release date of the album was delayed because of concerns regarding the lyrical subject matter of the opening track "Angel of Death", which refers to Josef Mengele and describes acts such as human experimentation that he committed at the Auschwitz concentration camp. However, the band's members stated numerous times that they did not condone Nazism and were merely interested in the subject.
Seasons in the Abyss is the fifth studio album by American thrash metal band Slayer, released on October 9, 1990 by Def American Records. Recording sessions began in March 1990 at Hit City West and Hollywood Sound, and ended in June 1990 at The Record Plant in Los Angeles, California. It was the band's last album to feature original drummer Dave Lombardo until 2006's Christ Illusion. Seasons in the Abyss' musical style has been compared by critics to the band's previous two albums South of Heaven (1988) and Reign in Blood (1986).
Stalking is unwanted and/or repeated surveillance by an individual or group towards another person. Stalking behaviors are interrelated to harassment and intimidation and may include following the victim in person or monitoring them. The term stalking is used with some differing definitions in psychiatry and psychology, as well as in some legal jurisdictions as a term for a criminal offense.
Undeterred, the Pahlers launched a second lawsuit claiming that Slayer "knowingly distributed harmful material to minors."This case too was dismissed, with Judge E. Jeffrey Burke stating, "I do not consider Slayer's music obscene, indecent or harmful to minors."
Jacob Delashmutt himself stated in a Washington Post interview that "The music is destructive [but] that's not why Elyse was murdered. She was murdered because Joe [Fiorella] was obsessed with her, and obsessed with killing her."
Murder, Inc. were organized crime groups in the 1930s and '40s that acted as the enforcement arm of the Italian-American Mafia, Jewish mob, and connected organized crime groups in New York and elsewhere. The groups were largely composed of Italian-American and Jewish gangsters from the Brooklyn neighborhoods of Brownsville, East New York, and Ocean Hill. Originally headed by Louis "Lepke" Buchalter, and later by the most feared mob boss Albert "The Mad Hatter" Anastasia, Murder, Inc. was believed to be responsible for between 400 and 1,000 contract killings, until the group was exposed in the early 1940s by former group member Abe "Kid Twist" Reles. In the trials that followed, many members were convicted and executed, and Abe Reles himself died after suspiciously falling from a window. Thomas E. Dewey first came to prominence as a prosecutor of Murder, Inc. and other organized crime cases.
Abdul Latif Sharif, first name also spelled Abdel, was an Egyptian-born American chemist and chief suspect in the Juárez killings, a decade-long murder spree that began in the Mexican city of Ciudad Juárez in the early 1990s.
United States v. Alkhabaz, 104 F.3d 1492 was a case brought against University of Michigan undergraduate Abraham Jacob Alkhabaz, a.k.a. Jake Baker, related to several incidents regarding snuff stories that he wrote while he was a student at the University of Michigan. Alkhabaz was charged with violation of 18 U.S.C. s 875(c), communicating via interstate or foreign commerce threats to kidnap or injure another person. The case raised immediate First Amendment concerns and is considered an important one in the history of cyber law.
The slayer rule, in the common law of inheritance, stops a person inheriting property from a person he murders. In figuring inheritance of the decedent's estate, the slayer is treated as though he or she had died before the person he murdered, hence his share of the estate would pass to his issue.
Chester Dewayne Turner’ is an American convicted serial killer. On April 30, 2007, he was convicted of the murders of ten women in Los Angeles, and was also found guilty in the death of the unborn child of one of his victims. He was convicted of 4 additional murders on June 19, 2014. Prosecutors have called Turner "one of the most prolific serial killers in the city's history". On July 10, 2007, Turner was sentenced to death for the 11 murders he was originally convicted of committing. On June 26, 2014, Turner was sentenced to death a second time for the 4 additional murders.
Peter Norris Dupas is an Australian serial killer, currently serving three consecutive life sentences for murder. He has a substantial criminal history involving serious sexual and violent offences, with his violent criminal history spanning more than three decades, and with every release from prison has been known to commit further crimes against women with increasing levels of violence. His criminal signature is to remove the breasts of his female victims.
Donald Henry "Pee Wee" Gaskins Jr. was an American serial killer.
Romona Moore was a 21-year-old Hunter College honors student who disappeared April 24, 2003 in Brooklyn, New York. Two months later, her body was discovered outside an abandoned house where an anonymous caller had directed her mother. Two male suspects were arrested; they were convicted in 2006 of having kidnapped, raped, tortured, and murdered Moore. While attending college, the young immigrant from Guyana was living at home with her parents and relatives.
Channon Gail Christian, 21, and Hugh Christopher Newsom, Jr., 23, were from Knoxville, Tennessee. They were kidnapped on the evening of January 6, 2007 when Christian's vehicle was carjacked, and taken to a rental house, where both of them were raped, tortured, and murdered. Four males and one female were arrested, charged, and convicted in the case. The grand jury had indicted four of the suspects on counts of capital murder, robbery, kidnapping, rape, and theft, while Eric Boyd was indicted in 2018 on federal charges of carjacking, but also indicted for theft, rape, and murder.
The Alphabet murders occurred in the 1970s in the Rochester, New York, area and possibly in Los Angeles, California.
"Better by You, Better than Me" is a 1969 song by the English rock band Spooky Tooth. The song was covered in 1978 by heavy metal band Judas Priest.
David Joseph Carpenter, a.k.a. the Trailside Killer, is an American serial killer known for stalking and murdering several people on hiking trails in state parks near San Francisco, California. Carpenter killed at least ten people, with two attempted victims, Steven Haertle and Lois Rinna, surviving. He used a .38 caliber handgun in all but one of the killings; a .44 caliber handgun was used in the killing of Edda Kane on Mount Tamalpais.
The Dnepropetrovsk maniacs are Ukrainian serial killers responsible for a string of murders in Dnipropetrovsk in June and July 2007. The case gained additional notoriety because the killers made video recordings of some of the murders, with one of the videos leaking to the Internet. Two 19‑year-old locals, Viktor Sayenko, born 1 March 1988, and Igor Suprunyuk, born 20 April 1988, were arrested and charged with 21 murders.
Since the 1994 film Natural Born Killers was released, several attacks suspected to have been copycat crimes have been committed by fans of the film, mostly by high school students within the age range of 15-18. Though apparent links have been claimed between the film and most of the incidents described below, certain causality has not been proven.
James Cheney Mason is an American attorney best known as co-counsel for Casey Anthony in the 2011 Casey Anthony trial and counsel for Nelson Serrano in his 2006 murder trial.
The Flat-Tire murders refer to five connected, unsolved murders in Dade County, Florida in 1975. Investigators theorized that the killer deflated the tires of the victims' vehicles and offered them assistance before killing them. All the murders took place in the vicinity of Cutler Bay and the Palmetto area of South Miami-Dade County.
Israel Keyes was an American serial killer, rapist, arsonist, burglar, and bank robber. Keyes admitted to violent crimes as early as 1996, with the violent sexual assault of a teenage girl in Oregon. He committed a long series of rapes and murders until his capture in 2012. He was being held in custody, awaiting trial for the murder of Samantha Koenig, when he committed suicide in jail.
Anthony Kirkland is an American serial killer. Between 2006 and 2009, Kirkland murdered two women and two girls in the Cincinnati area, following a 16-year prison term for the 1987 killing of his girlfriend.
Nikko Allen Jenkins is an American spree killer, convicted of committing four murders in Omaha, Nebraska in August 2013. The murders occurred within a month after he had been released from prison after serving 10 1⁄2 years of the 21 years to which he had been sentenced for a carjacking committed at age 15 and for assaults committed in prison.