Joshua Keyzer, a Michigan teen who raped and then murdered his own cousin before using her blood to write a message on the wall, has pleaded guilty to his horrendous crimes.
Keyzer was 15 years old when he attacked and killed his 21-year-old cousin Kassandra Keyzer. Kassandra was a college student, engaged to be married, and the mother to a little boy who was only two at the time of his mother’s death. Although only 15 at the time of his crime, Keyzer has been charged as an adult.
It was Joshua and Kassandra’s grandmother Sharon Keyzer who called 911, after her grandson attacked her and slashed her throat. Michigan state trroopers arrived to find Sharon holding a blood-soaked towel to her wound, which was horrifying enough, but the scene that greeted them when they went downstairs was even worse.
The body of Kassandra Keyzer was found sprawled out over an ottoman in a basement described as “blood-soaked,” her clothes and underwear cut off. Her throat had been slashed — a fatal wound described in police reports as a “deep laceration starting from her chin to the middle of her cheek,” as well as a stab wound in her neck.
The words “My bad” had been scrawled on the north wall of the basement in Kassandra’s own blood.
The state troopers found Joshua Keyzer, covered in his cousin’s blood, on the roof of the house, still clutching a hunting knife. He jumped off of the roof in an attempt to escape, but was quickly subdued by the state troopers’ tasers and arrested.
According to the New York Daily News, Keyzer has undergone two psychiatric exams and was found competent to stand trial. He has never given any reason as to why he attacked his cousin, but in court Monday, Keyser, who is now 16, pleaded guilty, admitting to the murder of Kassandra.
The teen appeared via a video link from the juvenile detention center where he has been detained. As the judge asked Keyzer questions about the crime, he responded in a halting voice, his body visibly twitching on camera.
“I, uh, killed her, ma’am,” Keyzer said in reference to his cousin.
“Did that involve some sort of sexual penetration?” the judge asked.
“Yes, your honor,” he responded.
“And did you do that while you were involved in killing Kassandra?” the judge asked.
“Yes, your honor,” Keyzer said.
As part of the plea deal reached, Keyzer will face a sentence of 40 to 60 years in prison, which is a much lighter sentence than the normally mandatory Michigan sentence of life without the possibility of parole that adults convicted of first-degree or felony murder face.
Sharon Keyzer, the grandmother, did heal from the wounds inflicted upon her by her own grandson, but died later of cancer.
Another shocking family murder recently made headlines. Click here to read about the man who stabbed his wife to death in front of their daughter on Mother’s Day.
[Images via Allegan County Circuit Court and MyFox13.com]