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The 25 Craziest Real-Life American Horror Stories

13. The murder of Elyse Pahler

In March 1996, the body of 15-year-old Elyse Pahler was found in Arroyo Grande, CA, not far from her house, after one of her murderers, Royce Casey, confessed to the crime. The reason Casey came clean is where the story gets really bizarre: He has recently converted to Christianity. Prior to that, he was a Satanist, and, along with friends Jacob Delashmutt and Joseph Fiorella, raped and killed Pahler eight months beforehand as part of a ritual "sacrifice to the devil."

But, wait, it gets worse. The three friends were part of an upstart heavy metal band, named Hatred, and they claimed that killing Pahler was meant to give them the "craziness" to "go professional." Elyse's parents later blamed the popular metal group Slayer, specifically the band's songs "Postmortem" and "Dead Skin Mask," which provided Casey, Delashmutt, and Fiorella with the the guidance to efficiently rape, kill, and "commit acts of necrophilia" on Elyse. However, in an interview with the Washington Post, Delashmutt rebuked the Slayer charges and instead blamed the murder on Fiorella's obsessions with Pahler.

Tags: elyse_pahler
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