Danvers High School student Philip Chism was indicted in a Massachusetts court on Thursday on some pretty chilling charges. We already knew the 14-year-old was accused of murdering of his pretty young math teacher Colleen Ritzer, but now we learn that he also allegedly “stole her iPhone, credit cards, and underwear before raping her with an ‘object’ and killing her.”
We were shocked last month when the teen was charged as an adult, but if these accusations are true, then maybe it’s deserved. The actual charges are murder, aggravated rape, and armed robbery. Prosecutors say the aggregated rape charge is brought when “there was serious bodily harm or when the rape was committed during another violent felonious crime or both.”
While Chism has cooperated fully with the police, and supposedly told them exactly what happened during and after the attack, no one can figure out why. He doesn’t have a history of violence, hasn’t been on any medications they know of, and he was generally described as a really nice guy and polite young man.
A police source speculated, “The only thing anyone can come up with is that he had feelings for her that were not returned, but that is just a theory. It really is a complete mystery. And it is unclear whether we will ever really know why he did it.”
Authorities say there is absolutely no evidence of any misconduct or wrongdoing by Ms. Ritzer, who had asked Chism to stay behind for some extra help after class on the day she was murdered.
It’s believed that Chism followed her into the bathroom with a box cutter, where he proceeded to rob her, rape her with an undisclosed object, and slit her throat before dumping her body in the woods behind the school. He was seen later that evening at a Woody Allen movie.
The whole thing is absolutely abhorrent.
The Ritzer family released a statement today saying:
We are devastated and heartbroken by the details of the horrific circumstances surrounding the death of our beautiful daughter and sister, Colleen.
As a family, we continue to mourn Colleen’s passing and ask that the media respect our privacy during this very difficult time.
Do these new details change your opinion on charging the teenager as an adult?
Image via Marsmettn tallahassee/Flickr