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Marcus Delon Wesson
Marcus Wesson mug shot.jpg
Background information
Born August 22, 1946 (1946-08-22) (age 63)
Kansas[1]
Penalty Death
Parents Benjamin [2] and Carrie Wesson[1]
Killings
Date 12 March 2004
Target(s) Family
Location(s) Fresno, CA
Killed Sebhrenah April Wesson(age 25)
Elizabeth Breahi Kina Wesson(17)
Illabella Carrie Wesson(8)
Aviv Dominique Wesson(7)
Sedonia Solorio Wesson(2)
Marshey St Christopher Wesson(2)
Johnathon St Charles Wesson
Ethen St Laurent Wesson(4)
Jeva St Vladensvspry Wesson(1)
Weapon(s) .22 caliber handgun,

Marcus Delon Wesson (born August 22, 1946) is an American man convicted of nine counts of first-degree murder and 14 sex crimes, including the rape and molestation of his underage daughters. His victims were his own children, fathered by incestuous relationships with his daughters and nieces, as well as the children by his wife.[1][3] He has been discribed as Fresno's worst mass murder.[4]

Contents

Murders

Prior to March 12, 2004, Wesson had declared his intention to relocate his daughters and their children to Washington state, where Wesson's parents lived.[5] On March 12, 2004, several members of Wesson's extended family, along with two daughters who rebelled against Wesson, converged on his family compound demanding the release of Wesson's other children.[5] Fresno police were summoned to what was described as a child custody issue, and a standoff ensued.[4] During the course of the standoff, Wesson, who at first appeared cooperative to the police, was permitted to step away and go back into his house.[4] Fresno police testified they did not hear gunshots being fired shortly after, though other witnesses present at the standoff testified they did hear gunshots fired at that time.[6] In the aftermath, nine bodies of Wesson's daughters and their children were discovered in a bedroom filled with antique coffins.[5] [6] Each victim had been shot through the eye. Authorities, relatives and public records suggest he has fathered up to 18 children with seven women.[1] Wesson's other children, who were not present inside the house, survived the incident.[6]

Trial

At his trial, Wesson, represented by public defenders Peter Jones and Ralph Torres, offered as defense that his 25-year-old daughter Sebhrenah, whose 18-month-old son Marshey (Wesson's own son and grandson) was killed as well, had herself committed the murders, and then subsequently committed suicide.[7] The murder weapon, a .22 caliber handgun, was found with her body, and Sebhrenah's DNA was found on the gun, which lent credence to Wesson's claim.[6] The jury declined to find that Wesson fired the fatal shots, but convicted him of murder anyway, presumably finding that he had persuaded his children to enter into a suicide pact.[7]

Conviction and Sentence

Wesson was convicted of nine counts of first-degree murder on June 17, 2005, and also found guilty on 14 counts of forcible sexual assault and the sexual molestation of seven of his daughters and nieces. Wesson was sentenced to death on June 27, 2005.[8] He is believed to be housed in San Quentin's Adjustment Center.

References

  1. ^ a b c d Fontana, Cyndee; Anderson, Barbara and Coleman, Donald E. (18 April 2004). "The Many Portraits of Marcus Wesson". The Fresno Bee (Fresno, CA). http://www.rickross.com/reference/wesson/wesson38.html. Retrieved 10 January 2010.  
  2. ^ Marcus Wesson orders the death of 9 of his children
  3. ^ Marcus Wesson's Family Tree, Court TV, May 10, 2005
  4. ^ a b c Marshall, Carolyn (16 March 2004). "Fresno Victims Were Shot, Police Report". The New York Times (Fresno, CA). http://www.nytimes.com/2004/03/16/us/fresno-victims-were-shot-police-report.html?pagewanted=1Fresno. Retrieved 11 January 2010.  
  5. ^ a b c Francis, Monte (29 May 2007). By Their Father's Hand: The True Story of the Wesson Family Massacre. New York: Harper Collins. pp. 10. ISBN 978-0060878245. http://www.amazon.com/Their-Fathers-Hand-Wesson-Massacre/dp/006087824X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1263249894&sr=8-1#reader_006087824X.  
  6. ^ a b c d Child brides and vampire names: Bizarre the norm in mass murder trial By Harriet Ryan, Court TV via CNN.com, Thursday, May 19, 2005
  7. ^ a b Barbassa, Juliana (2 June 2005). "Prosecution says Marcus Wesson carried out murder-suicide pact". Associated Press (Fresno, CA). http://www.rickross.com/reference/wesson/wesson99.html. Retrieved 11 January 2010.  
  8. ^ Barbassa, Juliana (17 June 2005). "Marcus Wesson guilty in murders of nine of his children". Associated Press (Fresno, CA). http://www.rickross.com/reference/wesson/wesson101.html. Retrieved 11 January 2010.  







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