8-Year-Old Leila Fowler’s Murder Case Takes a Bizarre Turn

The case of 8-year-old Leila Fowler, who was stabbed to death in her Valley Springs, California home, keeps getting stranger and stranger. Leila was found last Saturday, stabbed to death in her room after her 12-year-old brother said he saw a tall man with long gray hair running from the scene. Originally, a neighbor confirmed the account and claimed to have also seen the man, but now that female neighbor has recanted her story and police believe that the person is an unreliable witness. Police say when they tried to get her to contribute to a sketch, she wouldn't give them any information.

Police have still not put out a sketch of the suspect. Meanwhile, police took several knives from the Fowler home for testing. And an FBI profiler said that the suspect most likely knew Leila, who was stabbed when she and her brother were the only ones home. Says profiler Candice DeLong (a regular on the Investigation Discovery Network):

Did someone come from far across town, stop their car and randomly go into a house and kill that young girl? Probably not. [The killer] was either angry enough to want her dead or was trying to have sex with her. She resisted and she ended up dead.

Cops have also reportedly told the public NOT to be concerned for their safety. Does this mean they know there's not a killer loose in their town? And why would a neighbor say she saw a man running from the scene but now won't say anything? Is she nutty? Just wanted attention? Is scared?

Let's just ask what we're all thinking here. Could her brother be a suspect? After all, he was in the house and had opportunity. It's horrible to think about -- but killers this young do exist.

However, authorities have repeatedly said the boy is not a suspect and is cooperating with the investigation. Of course, they would say that to keep him cooperating.

However, if the brother was the main suspect, why would the police spend manpower searching the area for the suspect? They've looked through two nearby ponds for evidence.

And where is the weapon? Although knives from the Fowler home are being tested, would a 12-year-old really be able to have the presence of mind to clean knives and put them back? Why weren't the knives taken for testing last week? If a family knife is missing, wouldn't the boy have been arrested by now?

I have to assume investigators know what they're doing. The family must be in agony wondering what happened to their daughter in their own home. I can't imagine the horror of what they're going through.

What do you think happened?


Image via Alan Cleaver/Flickr

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Vegeta Vegeta

Not saying a random dude didn't just come in and do it, cause we all know stranger things have happened. But I'm kinda leaning towards the brother doing it. 12 year olds aren'stupid; if they put their mind to it, they're perfectly capable of covering their tracks.

BlueJane BlueJane

I have no idea what happened and I think it's extremely irresponsible to speculate.

nonmember avatar jasdf

What happened to the man that broke into an apartment an hour away that tried to kidnap a little girl? He fit the description completely.

nonmember avatar Rhiannon walker

I know the family personally and it disgusts me that you would speculate that her brother would be the suspect. Yes things do happen but I'd advise to keep your mouth shut until this investigation is over. All your news blog here does is torment all of us who are grieving. Put yourself in our shoes. Wouldn't feel too good if you were being accused or taunted by people speculating.. That behavior is what is ruining our world today. So out of respect leave this all to the departments handling te case. Thank you.

Runny... Runnyisaac

I am sorry for the family, however my immediate thought was that the 12 year old had a hand in this. I really hope not, but it happens.

Ashley Bearden

im sorry for yalls loss :( i hope they find the sick person who did this and may that sweet little girl RIP! praying for you all

Brice Trumey

@ Rhiannon: Who are you to tell anyone to keep their mouths shut? It's pretty obvious the brother did it and I'll say that if I want to. The police say we don't need to be concerned for our safety. That means they know that a deranged killer isn't on the loose and looking for a new victim.

nonmember avatar cali*veras

ALSO @ RHIANNON: I agree w/Brice..If you're so worried about what the family & friends are going through, why not turn off your computer & take a walk? You can't scan every site trying to persuade others what seems like an absolute obvious fact..Child killers do exist, albeit rare. The DNA will be processed soon, then we can all look at this kid and say "what were the red flags that we may have missed?" so perhaps we can learn from this tragedy and move on.

femal... femaleMIKE

The first suspects are always the people closest to them.  If the brother did it, he would have had blood all over him, right?  12 yr olds do kill but they are also still a child, I assume that if he did it, they would find a way to get him to open up. 

Sam Kniffen

@ femaleMIKE: I haven't read anywhere that her brother did or did not have blood on himself. Blood on him could/should mean that he tried to help her. Otherwise...

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