Background of the case
Lyle Menendez, Erik Menendez, Jose Menendez and Kitty Menendez were involved in the particular crime. Lyle and Eric are brothers: they were killers; Jose and Kitty, their parents – victims.
The place of the crime was their Beverley Hills home in the State of California (The Case Profile of the Menendez Brothers Trial, 2019)
Lyle and Erik Menendez undertook the murder of their parents, Jose and Kitty, on August 20th, 1989 (The Case Profile of the Menendez Brothers Trial, 2019).
The man and the woman were shot from two 12-gauge shotguns (Why the Menendez Brothers Killed Their Parents – a Look Inside Their Murder Case, 2020).
The Menendez murders were a horrible, barbaric crime; Jose and Kitty were nearly unidentifiable by 15 rounds from two 12-gauge shotguns. The crime was so cruel, brutal and ruthless that police at first suspected the mob; the investigation focused on the couple’s business rivals and a porn executive who had hostility with Jose (Why the Menendez Brothers Killed Their Parents – a Look Inside Their Murder Case, 2020).
In order to defend themselves, the brothers accused their dead father, Jose, of molesting them since childhood. Leslie Abramson, their lawyer, argued that after growing up in such a violent and traumatizing home, they defended themselves. Lyle gave graphic testimony. Years later, their cousin claimed that he told her similar stories in childhood and she believed him. However, the court did not (Why the Menendez Brothers Killed Their Parents – a Look Inside Their Murder Case, 2020).
- “Criminal Law is the legal field that focuses on both the prosecution and defense of criminal activity conducted in both public, private, and electronic sectors – with regard to a Fraud charge, a criminal attorney can provide assistance in the preparation of a case upon review of the case details; with regard to Fraud charges, the intent, motive, and behavior implemented by the perpetrator is taken into consideration prior to sentencing” (The Case Profile of the Menendez Brothers Trial, 2019)
Date of the Trial: June 12th, 1995
- “The Menendez Brothers were accused of committing murder in the first degree, classified as the premeditated, purposeful, illegal, and deliberate execution of an individual or individuals” (The Case Profile of the Menendez Brothers Trial, 2019).
In addition, they were accused of life insurance fraud. It is said that the murder was committed in order to collect the premium life insurance and receive an enormous amount of money.
Date of the Delivery of the Verdict: July 2nd, 1996.
The Menendez Brothers were found guilty of the murder of their parents, Jose and Kitty Menendez, and were both sentenced to life sentences without the chance(s) of parole. Any further case reviews were declined by the United States Supreme Court (The Case Profile of the Menendez Brothers Trial, 2019).
The delivered verdict was unfair due to overlooking the possibility that Lyle and Erik could be mentally unstable. It was mentioned that they accused their father of abusing and even raping them since childhood. In addition, according to the brothers’ words, Jose was an extremely strict and rude father; he was constantly criticizing and humiliating them.
Their mother, Kitty Menendez, was said to suffer from different types of addictions due to Jose’s constant cheating and violence against the family. These all are signs of unhealthy family environments from a young age. All these events could not happen without consequences to Lyle’s and Erik’s psyches. The court psychiatrists did not conduct the examination properly.
“Years later, their cousin claimed, that he told her similar stories in childhood and she believed him” (Why the Menendez Brothers Killed Their Parents – a Look Inside Their Murder Case, 2020). This is the evidence of the brothers telling the truth. Furthermore, Erik was visiting a psychiatrist for a considerable time; this is also evidence, that something was not alright with him and he needed help.
In addition, the brothers’ weird behavior after the tragedy (they were calm, cold-hearted, and started spending a lot of their parents’ money) can also be a sign of mental instability.
Their parent’s corpses were unidentifiable by the shots from the shotguns: police were shocked by watching that. This also proves that no mentally healthy person could do that and the brothers needed help.
In 1972 the American Law Institute developed a new rule for insanity in § 4.01, which says that “a defendant is not responsible for criminal conduct where (s)he, as a result of mental disease or defect, did not possess a “substantial capacity either to appreciate the criminality of his conduct or to conform his conduct to the requirements of the law.“” (Insanity Defense).
Civil and Criminal Court
The case was tried at The State Court of California in the criminal court due to the type of offense. The difference between civil and criminal courts is that in the first one, a person sues the other one for a dispute of problems between them. After losing the case, a person has to pay money for that and no one goes to jail.
In the criminal court, the government files a case against a criminal who committed something serious. If the defendant pled guilty, they go to jail.
The Case Profile of the Menendez Brothers Trial. (2019). Laws. Web.
Why the Menendez Brothers Killed Their Parents – a Look Inside Their Murder Case. (2020). Biography. Web.