Aaron State, Matthew, Russell Matthew discussed on Crime Junkie
The media gets a hold of Matthew's assault pretty quickly, and the story explodes all across the country within days word is already spreading that Matthew might have been attacked for being gay and according to the Democrat and chronicle by October Ninth Laremy police are already looking at this as a possible hate crime. Now all this is going on. Matthew's parents are still making their way to his bedside and Colorado from Saudi Arabia now. They stop in Minneapolis to pick up matthews. Little brother Logan, so that they. They can continue the trip as a family, but while they're traveling matthews, mom, Judy actually sees a picture of Matthew with the news of his attack as front page headlines on like the newsstands before she even gets to see her son in person, which I just can't even imagine like seeing a picture of your child heartbreaking. Yeah, happy and healthy knowing that when you finally go, see them at their side like they're going to be in so much pain. They might not even look like themselves anymore. I just. I can't imagine what that would have been like for her. So while the shepherds are completing the most painful journey of their lives, the police are still interrogating Aaron and Russell and it's Aaron who breaks I telling officers the full story he tells police that he and Russell Matthew at this bar called the fire site in Laramie and apparently they had decided somehow some way that they were going to rob him. As Erin tells it to. Men pretended to. To be gay in order to win Matthews confidence and make them feel more comfortable with them. So the end of the night when Matthew was getting ready to leave, they said he had no problem accepting a ride and getting an errand truck now at some point this ride Aaron that Matthew put his hand on errands leg, so Aaron told him as quoted in the BBC in numerous other sources. Guess what we're not gay and we're going to jack you up Aaron. Aaron says that's when they start to beat him. And it continued while they drove outside of Laramie to that open expanse in the middle of nowhere with offense, Aaron says Russell's the one who actually tied matthew to the fence, but that he's the one who kept beating Matthew with the butt of his gun into unconsciousness, and past the point of no return all well mocking him about how Gay Awareness Week was just about to happen at the University of Wyoming and. And he says the entire time that he's doing this. Russell just laughing in the background, thinking that this was the funniest thing in the world before they left, Erin says that they actually took matthew shoe so that he wouldn't be able to walk back into town, and he said they continue to beat him specifically, so that Matt you wouldn't even be able to like. See Out of his is well enough to pick out the license plate number as they drove away. Now it's at this point that they drive back into Laremy and this is when they get into that encounter with Emiliano. In Jeremy so with a full confession, the attempted murder charges actually get upgraded to murder after Matthew dies from his injuries on October twelfth. Nineteen Ninety eight with his parents at his bedside. He never emerged from his coma and the autopsy showed that he was struck at least eighteen times with Aaron's gun which led to multiple skull fractures and a severely damaged brain stem. The already frenzied media reports every savage detail while police keep working the case even with the confessions and the suspects in custody. The motive is at the forefront of everyone's mind. Was this really a robbery gone wrong? And literally as wrong as it could go, or was this a targeted anti gay hate? Crime Errands Girlfriend Kristen shed some light on it when she goes on twenty twenty and says quote. They just wanted to be him. Him Bad enough to teach him a lesson not to come on, just treat people and be aggressive about it anymore. As the case progresses through the legal system, Aaron and Russell opt for different strategies instead of going to trial. Russell pleads guilty in April of Nineteen Ninety Nine to felony murder and kidnapping and gets handed to life sentences. Erin decides to take his chances at trial and his defense team goes for a shocking tactic. They decide to use the gay panic defence. What is that so? That's an informal term because this defense isn't like a thing that stands on its own. The LGBT bar advocacy group defines it as quote, a legal strategy that asks a jury to find that a victim's sexual orientation or gender identity slash expression is to blame for a defendant. Reaction including murder and quotes so blaming the victim. Yes, so basically what this is saying is that the perpetrators mental capacity was temporarily diminished, and that they couldn't make clear rational or right decisions, because they were just so incensed or appalled or surprise, or whatever that they're victim was an lgbtq person, and so they say that they shouldn't be held to the normal standard of the law, because really it's the victims fault for who they were. Routine at guy says bullsh-. I'm sorry. What like there's no way that's legal like can be used in court. Suffering and lutely it can be used. The law I mean basically it comes down to just what it sounds like violently freaking out because someone isn't a heterosexual sis. Gender person can be excused and the justice system has agreed, and basically offers a reduced sentences or sometimes even tosses out the charges altogether in some cases now at the time at Aaron's trial. This is back in October of ninety nine. His team knows that the gay panic defense is a strategy that is totally legal. Legal in all fifty states at the time, so Tom Kenworthy reported in the Washington Post that errands lawyers kind of hone in on the fact that matthew allegedly Beta pass at Aaron, when he put his hand on errands leg, which they argue that it like shed some light on Aaron State of mind. They alleged that Erin had been sexually assaulted by an older boy, growing up, and that he was just so triggered and humiliated by Matthews. Matthews advances that he temporarily went crazy and beat him to death, and therefore they said that he should be convicted of manslaughter, not murder now. Fortunately Judge Barton Voigt is instantly like no, he cites Wyoming law, banning temporary insanity and diminished capacity defenses, and he tells errands team to come up with.