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10 Terrifying Teenage Satanists

by Robert Grimminck
fact checked by Jamie Frater

When young people say they are into Satanism, it’s mostly just a way to rebel and shock people. In most cases, they wear black clothes, and listen to heavy metal or industrial music. Perhaps, in some extreme cases, they might even do some body modifications. Usually, it is pretty harmless, and it is just a way for the young person to express himself or herself. Then there are those who take it too far and commit some horrifying crimes.

10Jonathan Cantero

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Nineteen-year-old nursing student Jonathan Cantero had apparently been obsessed with Satanism for years. He read many books on the subject, but he thought if he really wanted to get involved in Satanism he had to kill his mother, 42-year-old Patricia Ann Cantero.

Cantero wrote out an 11-step plan on how he would kill his mother and, on October 12, 1988, he drove over to his mother’s home in Tampa, Florida. While his mother was at the stove, Cantero came up behind her, put a handkerchief over her mouth, and started stabbing her. In total, she received 40 stab wounds to the chest and her throat was slit.

Then, following his plan, he tried to sever her left hand, but didn’t complete the gruesome task. As his mother lay dead, he recited: “Lord Satan, thou I had stricken this woman from the earth, I have slain the womb from which I was born. I have ended her reign of desecration of my mind, she is no longer of me, yet only a simple serpent on a lower plane.”

After the ritual murder, Cantero went out to his mother’s backyard and tried to burn his list and clothes, but they were only partially burned. He was arrested two weeks later and given a life sentence.

9The Murderer Of Keamogetswe Sefularo

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Fourteen-year-old Keamogetswe Sefularo of Indwe, Eastern Cape, South Africa was a member of a satanic cult but chose to leave it. Unhappy with her choice to leave, the leader of the cult wanted her dead. One of the cult members, an unnamed 15-year-old girl, volunteered to kill Sefularo. The killer had volunteered to commit the murder because she said she wanted to gain powers that would allow her to spiritually leave her body. She planned to use the power to float into locked places through keyholes.

On March 1, 2013, as Sefularo was walking home from school, the 15-year-old cult member attacked her, stabbing her four times—twice in the stomach, once in the chest, and once in the neck. All this happened while the killer’s 19-year-old boyfriend cheered her on.

After the murder, the girl bragged to the other cult members and was ultimately arrested. She was given a sentence of 10 years (with two years suspended). Since her incarceration, she has apparently turned over a new leaf and is haunted by the murder.

8Trace Royal Duncan, Cary Dale Grayson, Kenny Loggins & Louis Mangione

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On February 22, 1994, 17-year-old Trace Royal Duncan, 19-year-old Cary Dale Grayson, 17-year-old Kenny Loggins, and 16-year-old Louis Mangione were drinking, doing drugs, and driving around Jefferson County, Alabama. At some point, they came across 37-year-old Vicki Lynn DeBlieux who was hitchhiking. They offered her a ride but, instead of taking her to her desired location, they took her to a nearby forest. Once there, DeBlieux turned down their sexual advances and tried to leave. They attacked her by throwing beer bottles at her, then they chased her down and started kicking her before someone stood on her throat, killing her. She was so badly beaten that every bone in her face was broken. After she was dead, they threw her body into a dump.

After the murder, Mangione was driven home, and then the other three teenagers returned to the body where they cut and stabbed the body 180 times. They removed part of her lung and cut off her fingers. They kept the fingers as souvenirs, and one was given to Mangione, who showed it to people. After the body was found, all four teenagers were arrested.

Mangione claimed that she was killed as a sacrifice to Satan. In the truck, there were a number of satanic symbols, and the killers owned a number of satanic books.

Duncan, Grayson, and Loggins were all given death sentences, and Mangione was given a life sentence. However, since Duncan and Loggins were under 18 when they committed the murder, their sentences were commuted to life without parole after the 2003 Supreme Court decision banned the death penalty for people who committed their crime before the age of 18. Grayson was set to be executed on April 12, 2012 but received a stay of execution.

7Moises Meraz-Espinoza

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In the satanic calendar, February 2 is a day that calls for an animal or human sacrifice. Obliging the Dark Lord in 2011 was 18-year-old Moises Meraz-Espinoza. The young man, who had a number of satanic tattoos—including one of the number 666 behind his ear—attacked his 42-year-old mother by strangling her. After she was dead, he proceeded to mutilate her.

Using a circular saw, her body was carved apart in the bathroom of their apartment. He flayed her skin and filleted the body, sticking pieces of muscle and flesh into plastic bags and storing them in the freezer. Her body was decapitated, both eyes were gouged out, and all her teeth were pulled. Finally, two inverted crosses were carved into the skull and it was placed in a backpack.

Meraz-Espinoza asked a cousin to help him dispose of the body, but she convinced him to turn himself in, which he did. He received 25 years in prison.

6Jose Reyes & Victor Alas

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On February 4, 2014, 17-year-old Jose Reyes and 16-year-old Victor Alas convinced 15-year-old Corriann Cervantes to come with them after a party and go to a vacant apartment in Clear Lake, Texas. Once there, Reyes told Alas that he had sold his soul to Satan. Alas could do the same; they just had to murder Cervantes. The pair then proceeded to rape the 15-year-old. They strangled her, then stabbed her a number of times with a screwdriver, including stabbing her in the face and gouging out her right eye. If that wasn’t bad enough, her head was beaten with a toilet lid and, finally, an inverted cross was carved into her stomach.

After the murder, Reyes bragged about it to friends, which led to him and Alas being arrested and charged with capital murder. At his trial, one of the pieces of evidence was a letter that Reyes wrote about the murder after spending nine months in prison. In it, he said that he stabbed that “hoe” 60 times and “it was all good,” because that was what Satan wanted.

Reyes was found guilty and sentenced to life in prison. Alas is set to go to trial in early 2015.

5Nathan Brooks

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On September 30, 1995, 17-year-old Nathan Brooks was home with his parents in their Bellaire, Ohio home. Brooks apparently had plans to kill 30 people as a sacrifice to Satan, and he started with his parents. First, he dispatched his mother by hacking her to death with an axe. Then, he shot his dad three times in the head and cut his head off using a hacksaw. He was decapitated so that Brooks could use his head in a satanic ritual.

Brooks’s brother was at a friend’s house at the time of the murder. After killing his parents, Brooks made his way over to his brother’s friend’s house and stuck a note to the house using a knife. The note said that he killed two people, he was going to turn himself in, and that he left money for his brother. Brooks pleaded not guilty, claiming insanity, but he was given two consecutive life sentences.

4Thomas Sullivan Jr.

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Fourteen-year-old Thomas Sullivan Jr. had developed a fascination with the occult and satanic worship. His newfound interest was upsetting to his parents and, on January 9, 1988, Sullivan and his 37-year-old mother, Betty Ann Sullivan, had an argument about it in their home in Jefferson Township, New Jersey. Things escalated, and Sullivan took his Boy Scout knife and stabbed his mother to death. He wrote a note confessing to the murder, and then went into the living room. He placed a number of books about Satanism and the occult in a circle, then placed some newspapers in the middle, and started a fire in the home while his father and younger brother slept.

Sullivan ran outside and, using the same knife he killed his mother with, he slit his own throat. Both his father and brother got out of the house after the smoke alarm woke them up, and they weren’t hurt. Police believed the fire was set to cover up the murder and to kill the remaining family members.

3Sean Sellers

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When Sean Sellers was 14, he started to get interested in Satanism. He carried the Satanic Bible with him, and brought vials of blood with him to school, proceeding to drink them in front of other students at his Oklahoma City high school. At home, he would sit in his room and perform satanic rituals, and he’d write letters to Satan in his own blood. Eventually, he found friends who had similar interests, and they drank each other’s blood.

On September 8, 1985, at the age of 16, Sellers summoned up his supposed alter ego and walked into a store with his friend, Richard Howard. The store clerk was Robert Bowers, and he had refused to sell them beer earlier. Howard wanted Bowers to be killed, so Sellers shot him. After murdering the man, the pair laughed about it.

Six months later, on March 5, 1986, Sellers had been arguing with his mother and stepfather about his girlfriend. After they went to bed, Sellers donned a pair of black underwear, walked into their room, and shot them as they slept. He then made it look someone had broken in and murdered them.

He was arrested and admitted to all three murders. At his trial, he said that he had read Anton Levey’s the Satanic Bible ”hundreds” of times. He also said that when he killed his three victims, he was possessed by a demon called “Ezurat.” At his trial, his lawyer argued that he was obsessed with Dungeons and Dragons, and couldn’t tell the difference between that and real life. Neither argument worked, and he was given a death sentence, despite being 16 at the time of the murders.

On death row, Sellers became a born-again Christian and did a number of interviews. Anti–death penalty advocates fought hard for Sellers because of his age when he committed the murder and his turnaround while in prison. Yet on February 19, 1999, at the age of 29, Sellers was executed by lethal injection. He is one of the 22 people executed in the US for crimes committed when they were under 18, since the reinstatement of the death penalty in 1976.

2Natasha Cornett

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Living in the small town of Betsy Lane, Kentucky, 18-year-old Natasha Cornett stood out among the rest of the town’s citizenry. She dressed in black and wore a lot of eye makeup. In January 1996, she was married in a Goth-style wedding. She wore a black dress and a studded dog collar. Her bridesmaids wore similar dresses with collars, and they were all chained together.

The marriage only lasted six months and, after the marriage ended, she was ready to get out of Kentucky. Cornett and five friends set out for New Orleans. Some in the media said that they were a cult or a coven, but Cornett denied that and said they were just friends. Nevertheless, on April 6, 1997, at a rest stop near Bailyton, Tennessee, Cornett and her entourage came across the Lillelid family, who were a family of four Jehovah’s Witnesses that were heading home from a convention.

The six teenagers kidnapped the family, including the family’s six-year-old daughter and two-year-old son, and drove them out to a deserted road where they shot all four of the family members. The parents died on scene, the six-year-old died the next day in the hospital, and the two-year-old survived, but he was left blind in one eye with a spinal cord injury.

The teenagers stole the family’s van and headed to Mexico, taking an odd route. Instead of cutting through Texas, they went through Arizona using State Road 191, which was formally called Route 666. They were arrested in Mexico driving the Lillelid’s van. While in prison, Cornett apparently said that Satan would help her out because she was the “daughter of Satan.” All six of them were convicted of murder and were given life sentences without the possibility of parole.

1Luke Woodham & Grant Boyette

In Pearl, Mississippi, a group of seven teenage boys started a small satanic cult called “The Kroth,” which was led by 18-year-old Grant Boyette. Boyette had apparently been interested in Satanism since he was about 14 years old. Under the guidance of Boyette, the group had a plan to murder fellow students at their school over a 10-month period.

On September 30, 1997, Boyette apparently talked to one of the cult members, 16-year-old Luke Woodham, for five hours on the phone convincing him to go through with an awful plan. Sadly, Woodham obliged the leader of the Kroth and, the next day, he beat and stabbed his mother to death. Then, armed with a rifle and dressed in a trench coat, Woodham drove to his school, Pearl High School, and found his ex-girlfriend, 16-year-old Christina Menefee, and her friend, 17-year-old Lydia Dew. Woodham killed both of them and then opened fire on the rest of the students, injuring seven of them. He was stopped by an assistant principal who retrieved a gun from his car.

Woodham was arrested on site, and a week later the rest of the Kroth was rounded up. At his trial, Woodham claimed demons told him to commit the murders, but he was ultimately given two consecutive life sentences for the murders and another seven 20-year sentences for injuring the students. Boyette and the five other cult members were originally charged with conspiracy to commit murder, but those charges were dropped. Instead, Boyette pled guilty to accessory to three murders and was sent to a boot camp for six months and received five years of probation.

Robert Grimminck is a Canadian crime-fiction writer. You can follow him on Facebook, on Twitter @RobertGrimminck, or visit his website.

fact checked by Jamie Frater