About That “Satanic” “Teen” “Craigslist Killer” …

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Pretend, for a moment, that you were programming a website that auto-generated sensationalistic headlines. What kinds of words would you plug into it? “Teen?” “Satanic?” “Serial killer?” The name of some kind of tech company? (Trust me on this one; headlines that include the word “Google,” “Apple,” or “Facebook” get tons of hits). On Sunday, nobody needed a fake headline generator to come up with a story that included all these phrases. After all, Miranda Barbour basically handed the story to them.

I won’t recount the details, not only because they’ve been splashed across news sites around the world already, but because right now there’s no evidence for almost anything she claims, except for the murder of one man she allegedly killed after luring him with a Craigslist ad in which she may have offered to exchange sex for money.

Instead, I want to look more closely at what she says, and how she says it:

“I remember everything … It is like watching a movie.”

Whether or not this girl is a legitimate killer, she’s indicating a sense of being disconnected from her actions. Is she delusional? Or possibly sociopathic?

Barbour claimed she began killing when she was 13 and involved in a satanic cult.

Invariably, young women who claim they belonged to “Satanic cults” were actually brainwashed into believing this by psychotherapists. They enter therapy for a variety of reasons, including childhood abuse.

At one point, she planned to let LaFerrara out of her Honda CRV. “He said the wrong things,” she said. “And then things got out of control.”

… She said she felt no remorse for her victims and said she killed only “bad people.”

Was her alleged victim a “bad person” for “saying the wrong things,” or was it more complicated than that? It’s hard to tell, taken through the filter of a news article. But if this is truly how she feels about the situation, it’s worrisome to consider what constitutes a “bad person” in her mind.

She said she was sexually molested at age 4.

Aha, now we’re getting somewhere.

“By no means is this a way to glorify it or get attention. I’m telling you because it is time for me to be honest and I feel I need to be honest.”

The way to not publicize and glorify your actions is to avoid talking to the press. You talk to the police. You cooperate with an investigation of your claims. You don’t talk to reporters.

What I’m saying, I don’t think this adds up. I’ll be interested, in the weeks and months to come, to see how much of her story holds up.

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3 responses to “About That “Satanic” “Teen” “Craigslist Killer” …

  1. Hi Beth, I started following your blog because my nephew helped me understand that playing video games is okay and doesn’t necessarily lead to violence. So I enjoy reading your blogs and seeing what your views are.

    I hadn’t heard of the event you write about in this blog, nor am I going to look into it, as I find it very upsetting.

    I did however want to comment on something you said:
    “Invariably, young women who claim they belonged to ‘Satanic cults’ were actually brainwashed into believing this by psychotherapists. They enter therapy for a variety of reasons, including childhood abuse.”

    I don’t know where you got that information, but it is wrong. I will speak strictly from my own experience of being born into a cult, and knowing a number of other people who were in the cult I was in or were in other cults. None of us, female or male, were brainwashed into thinking this happened to us. It was actually hard for many of our therapists to accept what we were telling them.

    It is easy to discount as simple sensationalism the reports of Satanic and other ritualistic abuse and activities. Some of what is reported has actually happened to the victim, some has been what a victim was brainwashed, by the cult, into believing for the purposes of control of the victim. There isn’t a lot of evidence of Satanic and other cult activities, partly because they’re really good at covering it up and partly because making a child believe something is as good as doing it, but you don’t have anything that can be proved.

    I do not know what the circumstances were for the woman in the article. I would like to ask that you keep an open mind about the possibility of these sorts of things being real, just as you ask your readers to keep an open mind about video games and other topics on which you write. Thank you.

    • Hi Iris, I absolutely believe cults are real, and that children are often victims. But they’re not Satanic, unless you’re going to use “Satanic” as an adjective that means the same thing as “evil and wrong.” My information predominantly comes from Richard Ofshe’s book “Making Monsters” and similar reading.

  2. Pingback: Church of Satan: ‘Craigslist Killer Not One of Us’ | Backward Messages

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