Philip Chism indicted by grand jury today for first degree murder, aggravated rape and armed robbery

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Good evening:

A Massachusetts grand jury returned an indictment today against 14-year-old Philip Chism.

The Boston Globe has the story.

Philip D. Chism was indicted by an Essex County grand jury today on charges of first-degree murder, aggravated rape and armed robbery, according to Essex District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett’s office. Chism allegedly attacked Ritzer when she stayed after school to talk with him about an upcoming exam, according to prosecutors and students who were in the building that day.

“The indictments returned today detail horrific and unspeakable acts,” Blodgett said in a statement. “This is the first step in a long process to secure justice for Ms. Ritzer and her family.”


Chism allegedly sexually assaulted the victim with an object. The aggravated rape charge is brought when there was serious bodily harm or when the rape was committed during another violent felonious crime or both, prosecutors said.

Prosecutors also allege that Chism, armed with a box cutter, robbed the victim of credit cards, an iPhone, and her underwear.

Ugly, ugly crime.

This is our 765th post.

46 Responses to Philip Chism indicted by grand jury today for first degree murder, aggravated rape and armed robbery

  1. shyloh says:

    Does anyone know where I can view that video besides that site? It will not play for me. Thank you!

  2. zhickel says:

    Off toppic, but have you seen this?

    Kendrick Johnson footage released; expert finds it ‘highly suspicious’

    In summary, analysis of all four gymnasium cameras find that roughly one hour of footage is missing.

    • Rachael says:


    • crazy1946 says:

      zhickey, Thanks for the link! My mind keeps going back to the statement from the sheriffs dept. “we (in this dept.) did not modify or change anything on the video’s. Please note, he did not say the video had not been altered or edited, he only said they did not do anything to it. Now we have an FBI agents family possibly being involved in the murder, could one question if he or someone he knows altered the video? Time missing, files corrupted, and out of focus camera (but only in an area of importance!), hmmm, do we see a pattern here?

      • crazy1946 says:

        zhickel, Please forgive my misspelling of your name in my prior post, no real excuse other than old worn out eyes, fingers, and brain..

        • zhickel says:

          No probs crazy. Left a couple of typos myself 🙂

        • zhickel says:

          It’s far too big a coincedence that all four cameras were missing footage for approximately the hour between 12 noon and 1pm. Actually, the time the footage restarted is interesting; 1.15, give or take a few minutes for all four cameras.

          It will be pretty easy to determine when the video files were last accessed and/or edited.

          • crazy1946 says:

            zhickel, It would be interesting to know who installed the video system, ie. was it done by their in house IT dept. or was it done via contract. My thought are that if it was done by the school systems IT dept. then the question of why a camera (which should have been monitored regularly) was allowed to be out of focus? This is a case that the electronic monitoring will be the link (short of an eye witness) will solve the case, please note that I said solve, not resolve. With that having been said, we must remember that this murder occurred in the heart land of American Racism, and even with evidence that would be sufficient to convict in most jurisdictions that are not as racially controlled, I predict a conviction in this case is unlikely to happen in the Valdosta area…

      • towerflower says:

        I saw that on CNN, it raises some questions that LE should have looked into. The missing time frames on the 4 cameras take out who might have been in the gym prior to him showing up, But they still have all the footage from the hallways. The out of focus view he blamed on the camera and not someone altering it. He said that the data lines are uncorrupted so it was nothing more than an out of focus camera lens. The expert also discovered that the time stamps are incorrect based on the time of people in the hallway and then being in the gym (something like 15 mins off).

        The family had first said all the time stamps were missing but the expert said it was a matter of finding the correct code and where it was hidden to bring out the time stamps.

        • crazy1946 says:

          towerflower, Have you by chance noticed if they have said this video security system is a passive or a monitored system? I would think that a school system that seems to have more than adequate funding to do anything they wish, would have a very good security group and would not rely on a passive system! I would think that not only would they have a good number of security officers in the school, they would have the funds to at least monitor the video system during school hours. Of course because this is/was as semi segregated school system, perhaps they did not feel the need to have physical security and relied solely upon the “broken” video system to protect the elite students they catered to? If you think I am wrong about the semi segregated portion, take a look at the racial demographics of the city and the county, then look at the racial breakdown at the Valdosta High School and then take a look at those from this school, and you will see what I am talking about…

  3. crazy1946 says:

    While the act of murder is not new to this planet, nor to this country, I am left to wonder, is it now increasing rapidly, or is it just that we are becoming more aware of it because of our newly found instant communication devices? We seem to spend a lot of time talking and pointing fingers after a crime has been committed, yet it does not appear that we are making much of an effort to prevent crimes like this from occurring. How much longer will it be until the “shock value” of stories wears us down to the point that we read them and pay no real attention unless they hit us directly? Do we no longer have a conscience? Do we no longer care about our nations youth and their collective futures? Have we as a society advanced to the point that death and murder is simply a short article on the internet to be scanned and discussed much like one would a home repair project? I can remember back to a time that life had a little value and while we had crime, it was not celebrated like a sports event, what has brought about this change, and can we reverse the course that we as a society have taken? In a nation that so many claim to be Christian, how can so many Un-Christian acts occur on a daily basis, did Christianity fail this nation, or did this nation fail Christianity? So many questions, but are there any true answers, or are we so far gone (as a society and nation) that there is no real hope for the future…..

    • Malisha says:

      Un-Christian acts preceded Jesus of Nazareth, caused his death, and permeated the “church” that was devoted to his gospel thereafter. If you want to find a collection of the most “un-Christian” acts perpetrated in the history of the world, you have only to look at the Christian nations of Europe from approximately 400 AD until … uh … well, just say, “starting in about 400 AD” because prior to that they weren’t TECHNICALLY “un” anything.

      To me, hope for the future has nothing to do with philosophy or religion. Are people going to suddenly change their behavior en masse and start acting right? I am sorry to say I don’t think so.
      And our communications technology has no moral value any more than certain litany ever did. As is true of humor, “It’s all in the telling.”

      • Christianity today, particularly the fundamentalist brand, bears little resemblance to the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth who lived and preached during apocalyptic times. He was a Jewish rabbi, a champion of the poor and the marginalized. He was not attempting to form a new religion and would be extremely offended by what has been done in his name.

        He was executed at the request of the rich and the privileged because his teachings offended and threatened them.

        Any Christian who worships power, greed and wealth is a hypocrite.

    • Actually, murder rates have been declining since 1980 (10.2 per 100,000) to 2011 (4.7 per 100,000) with a brief spike in 1991 (9.8 per 100,000).

      • crazy1946 says:

        Professor, curious, the murder rate has dropped more that 50% has there been a corresponding increase in population? Are the physical numbers of murder victims the same or similar as in 1980? Or is the reason they seem to have increased caused by the instant communication and news access we now enjoy?

        • The population has increased, but the murder rate accounts for an increase or decrease because it is expressed as a fraction (per 100,000 people).

          Look at this chart to see that the murder rate for each year from 1991-2011 is consistently lower for non-death-penalty states compared to states that have a death penalty.

          These statistics prove that the death penalty has no deterrent effect.

          • crazy1946 says:

            Professor, one of the possible flaws in statistics such as presented in this study is the “assumption” of consistency of the numbers, ie. the assumption that the number of murderers per 100,000 will/did remain constant as a percentage of the population. Perhaps as the population grew those with tendency to commit this type of crime did not grow in an equal proportion of the population ? That is the reason for my question about the growth of population. If in fact the numbers are valid, it would indicate a drop of approx. 54% in the murder rate over the course of the study. Does that seem valid when applied to the current news reporting of deaths on a daily basis? Are we then to assume that the reason for the appearance of an increase is actually better coverage of murder in the news media or could it be as a society we are more aware of what is taking place around us?

            I had looked at the chart, and already noticed that trend in the non capitol punishment states. I was however surprised the rapid loss of housing and employment that took place in 2008 did not cause a rise in the charts in the following years. By making an assumption based on the numbers presented on the charts, could these statistics then indicate that the working poor, and lower middle class (those being the most impacted by the failing economy) are (unlike what we have heard from some political powers) not the true crime leaders in this nation…

    • shyloh says:

      crazy1946 >

      Your name doesn’t come close to your thinking. This is brilliant!!! I totally agree with all you have said. I believe it is a truth that no one thinks about. It’s a sad world we live in.

      I followed the Caylee Anthony case from beginning to end. I put up a website for her. After that dumb verdict. I couldn’t even finish the never ending trial verdict. I couldn’t get myself to say. NOT GUILTY! I haven’t went back there.

      I stopped watching trials for a while. I stopped blogging about trials. I for one didn’t want to get so use to murder that I didn’t care anymore. I learned to step back. But I will always advocate for the missing, abused, and murdered. It’s just in my blood. We all need that voice.

      Again Brilliant comment!

      • crazy1946 says:

        shyloh, Thank you for your complement, however I am more inclined to say those were meandering words from a crazy old man, and trust me when I say that “old” does not necessarily equate to wise. If one were to take the participants of this blog and add the ones found on Xena’s (Blackbutterfly) and a few others, you would actually find more collective wisdom than could be found in some of our mid to large sized cities in this country. Too bad our elected leaders (executive, and legislative) could not be selected from a pool comprised of those individuals, can you just imagine the change that would be found in this nation? Too bad it can not happen, the political process would never allow common sense to prevail….

  4. How does one reconcile this?

    • Girlp says:

      I don’t know, when I was a child 6 or 7 years old there was a guy in my grandmother’s neighborhood. I was playing with her next door neighbors daugthers when he came after us with a knife we ran inside before he could get to us. Up to that point he’d never done anything to anyone he was 17 years old and died in the mid 1980’s of Aids in between that time he was in and out of jail for assault and battery and drugs. His mother, father and sister’s seemed nice they went to church every Sunday. Maybe things were going on in Butch’s home we did not know about, maybe something was going on in Chism’s home we don’t know about; but that does not excuse what he did. A woman is dead and a child has ruined his life and the family of the deceased woman. Very sad.

  5. aussie says:

    I’d hazard a guess robbery was not the motive, just an afterthought. A LOT of anger there.

    How did they end up in the bathroom? He forced her? followed her? they went together?

  6. acemayo says:

    Here are rapes cases we seem not to talk about

    Indigenous women in the US experience some of the highest rates of sexual assault in the country. According to the US Department of Justice, nearly half of all Native American women have been raped, beaten, or stalked by an intimate partner; one in three will be raped in their lifetime; and on some reservations, women are murdered at a rate 10 times higher than the national average.
    According to the Department of Justice, 86 percent of rapes and sexual assaults against Native American women are committed by non-Native American men.
    Reservation demographics play an important role. A significant portion of residents on reservations are non-native, largely a result of the US government’s sale of tribal land to white settlers around the turn of the century. In Mahnomen County, where Lisa lives and which lies entirely on the White Earth reservation, half the population is white.
    While a large number of the sexual assaults against Native American women are perpetrated by non-native men, there are still many cases of domestic violence being committed by Native American males.
    nuur12345 • 9 months ago −
    Very sad article, especially knowing that the unpunished rape cases are just one part of the overall injustice Native Americans have to live with. After being robbed of their lands and forced to live in reservations and driven into poverty, it seems that the American society, system and government are decided not to let them get up again any timein any way in the near future – left alone granting them a piece of justice.

  7. ed nelson says:

    Well get a grip! What I mean: look, stuff happens all the everlong day ever day, you have stuff happenen in the projects, in the hoods, down the street, even more… ad nauseum etc. so my point is… : I like it when you and Fred do out takes of common interest subject matter!

    This legal eagle stuff is fine, but you are good enough that you have the minds to go into many subjects, and tell you what… (my opinion,) Legal is a huge snore for those of us who… don’t, or maybe have not yet… been snagged.

    I liked your essays/outtakes on contemporary issues.

  8. racerrodig says:

    765 !! Wow, Congrats !!

    What on God’s Green Earth is wrong with our society ?? I just can’t fathom this anymore.

    • @racerrodig:

      Hi Racerrodig! I am a crime buff, and crime has been happening since the beginning of time. I watch ID Discovery channel and they chronicle crime from other centuries! You should view how the authorities punished people back in those centuries! It shocks me to hear how women killed men and got a soft deal because of it! Women were not seen as killers but as nurturers incapable of murder! There have always been child abuse in the world. This is nothing new.

      I also subscribe to Bonnie’s Blog of Crime, and crime happens all over the world. Black, white, latino, asian every single ethnic group that you can imagine commits crimes. Rich people, poor people, middle class people….. it happens! Husbands killing wives, wives killing husbands, girlfriends killing girlfriends and boyfriends, and boyfriends killing boyfriends and their girlfriends, parents kiling their children, children killing their parents, friends kiling friends, stranger killings, rapes, robbery it is just so surreal. Remember, today with our technology, we are privy to hearing more about crime due to those advances. It just seems like the world is coming to an end today because we just didn’t hear about crimes when we were growing up, but it happened!

  9. Nasty case just got a lot nastier.

  10. Two sides to a story says:

    I often wonder if this kid had any history or signs of mental disturbance – isn’t it rather rare for someone to commit such a vicious crime without prior signs of unbalance? What did people close to him know? Did the teacher trigger something?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: