Most of us associate the word innocence with children. It’s easy to look at a child’s angelic face and believe that they’ll never do anything wrong. Sadly, for the children listed below, this isn't the case. The ten kids on this list shocked everyone when they turned to coldblooded murder. In an age that is supposed to be carefree and simple, these children found dangerous ways to entertain themselves. Below is a list of ten children who committed horrendous murders. Some of them were sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole, others went free at the young age of 21 for a chance to start over. But wherever these young killers are now, it’s certain that they caused an amazing amount of death and destruction at a very tender age. They went from a state of child-like innocence to becoming coldblooded killers.
10 Joshua Phillips
Joshua Phillips grew up in Jacksonville, Florida, in a once peaceful town. On November 3, 1998, a young girl named Maddie Clifton disappeared. Police and 400 volunteers began searching for young Maddie with no luck. Eventually, the search was called off and a reward was offered for the girl. Just one week after the search ended, Phillips’ mother was cleaning out his room when she noticed a smell coming from underneath his bed. What she found was shocking. Under Phillips’ bed was Maddie Clifton. Phillips’ mother immediately ran to get police and Phillips was arrested. It turns out, Phillips was playing with Maddie when she got an injury that made her scream loudly. Panicked, 14-year-old Phillips tried to make her quite down, so he wouldn't anger his father. He hit Maddie with a baseball bat and stabbed her 11 times. Joshua Phillips was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. He is currently serving his time at Hardee Correctional Institution.
9 Eric Smith
Eric Smith grew up in Steuben County, New York. As a young child, he liked spending time with his grandparents. At an early age, Smith was diagnosed with intermittent explosive disorder, a mental illness that causes individuals to act out violently and unpredictably. On August 2, 1993, Smith was riding his bike home when he saw 4-year-old Derrick Robie. Smith persuaded Robie to follow him into a wooded area, where he strangled him, dropped a large rock on his head, removed all his clothing, and sodomized him with a tree limb. Robie’s body was found that night. Smith was only thirteen at the time of the murder, and was eventually convicted of second-degree murder and sentenced to nine years to life in prison, the maximum sentence for juvenile murderers at the time.
8 Graham Young
Graham Young was born in London. At a young age, he showed a fascination for poisons and their effects. At the age of 14, Young started testing out his poisons on his family. On April 21, 1962, Young’s stepmother died from poisoning. Young’s entire family was already suspicious of him at this time. All of them had become violently ill and they blamed Young. However, Young was not convicted until a teacher found poisons among Young’s things and called the police. Young was sent to a maximum-security hospital but that didn't stop him from carrying on his experimentation. He continued his poisoning spree by extracting cyanide from laurel bush leaves to poison hospital staff and fellow inmates, one of whom died. Young was released at the age of 23. After he left the hospital, Young continued to experiment with poisons. Eventually, Young was arrested and sent to prison where he died.
7 Mary Bell
Mary Bell is responsible for the deaths of two young boys, ages four and three. On May 25, 1968, just one day before her 11th birthday, Mary Bell strangled Martin Brown in an abandoned house. Just a couple of months later, Bell struck again, but this time with the help of her friend Norma Joyce Bell. The two girls strangled Brian Howe and carved an N, then an M, into his stomach using a razor. They also cut off some of his hair and mutilated his penis. In August 1968, the two girls were charged with two accounts of manslaughter. Norma Bell was eventually acquitted but Mary Bell’s conviction stuck. She served 12 years in prison and was released at the age of 23. Today, Bell is a mother and grandmother.
6 Alyssa Bustamante
In 2009, Alyssa Bustamante brutally murdered nine-year-old Elizabeth Olten. At the young age of fifteen, Bustamante was going through some tough times. Unfortunately, nobody knew just how troubled her mind was. Bustamante often fantasized about killing her two younger brothers, and even posted images with captions about the joys of watching them suffer. One day, Olten was walking home when she accidentally stumbled upon two unmarked graves that Bustamante had dug. Bustamante proceeded to kill the girl by strangling her, beating her and then slitting her throat. When police asked her why she had murdered the young girl, her response was that she, “wanted to know what it felt like.”
5 Jordan Brown
Jordan Brown was just eleven years old when he shot his father’s eight-month pregnant fiancé in the back of the head while she was sleeping. The woman had been shot with a youth-model 20-gauge shotgun, which had been a gift to Brown from his father. Initially, Brown was charged as an adult, which caused a lot of controversy around the case. Eventually, the judge reversed his initial ruling and decided to try Brown in juvenile court. On April 13, 2012, Brown was tried as a juvenile and found guilty.
4 Jon Venables & Robert Thompson
While accompanying his mom on a shopping trip, James Patrick Bulger was abducted by ten-year old boys, Robert Thompson and Jon Venables. The two boys snatched 2-year old Bulger while his mom was distracted. The boys then took Bulger on a 2.5 mile hike across Liverpool to Leeds. They were seen by no less than 38 people and although Bulger had a bump on his head and was crying, no one did anything to intervene. The two boys ended up killing and mutilating Bulger’s body. They then dumped his body on a railway line where it was discovered. Two days later, the boys were charged with Bulger’s abduction and murder. The pair were found guilty, making them the youngest convicted murders in modern English history. They were released in June 2001, on a lifelong license. However, Venables was sent back to prison in 2010 after violating the terms.
3 Cindy Collier & Shirley Wolf
In 1983, Cindy Collier and Shirley Wolf were carrying out petty crimes, including vandalism, in order to entertain themselves. Then one day, things got deadly. The 14 and 15-year old knocked on the door of an elderly woman who invited them in for something to eat and drink. After a bit of chatting, the girls turned deadly. Shirley took the woman by the neck, while Cindy got the butcher’s knife and gave it to Shirley. Shirley then stabbed the woman a total of 28 times, eventually killing her. The girls fled the scene but were captured shortly after. After confessing to the brutal murder, the two girls claimed that, it was, “a kick.”
2 Jesse Pomeroy
Jesse Pomeroy grew up in Charleston Massachusetts, where he entertained himself by torturing younger boys. When Pomeroy’s mother moved the family to another town, the attacks on younger boys continued and Pomeroy was eventually arrested. At the age of 14, Pomeroy was released back to his mother and brother. Just one month later, a ten-year old girl named Katie Curran went missing. Shortly after that, the body of four-year old Horace Millen was found in Dorchester Bay. The police immediately suspected Pomeroy. Eventually, Katie Curran’s body was found in the basement of Pomeroy’s mother’s dress shop. It was clear that Pomeroy had committed both of these brutal murders. Pomeroy was originally sentenced to death, but citizens didn't like the idea of hanging such a young boy. Instead, Pomeroy was sentenced to 40 years of solitary confinement. Later, he was transferred to Bridgewater Hospital for the Criminally Insane, where he spend his final days.
1 Kipland Kinkel
At the age of 15, Kipland Kinkel was expelled from school after bringing a gun to class. Unfortunately, this wasn't the end of his antics. When Kinkel came back to school, he brought an assault rifle with him and opened fire on the cafeteria. The attack left two students dead and 25 others wounded. When police arrived, Kipland was disarmed and taken into custody, but not after trying to fight them off with a knife. When officers raided his home they found that Kipland had already murdered both of his parents and rigged his mother’s body with a bomb. Kipland is currently serving a 111-year sentence without the possibility of parole.