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Behind the Casefiles: “Mark and John”

Note: although it is a simple matter to discover the true identity of “John”, the internet being what it is, I’m not going to blatantly do so here, as there is an indefinite court order prohibiting naming either of the boys.

This is another entry into my series of a behind-the-scenes look at the episodes I write for the podcast Casefile. These posts will explain how and why I choose each case and the research that goes into writing the stories.

A still from Channel 4 doco “Psycho: Kill me if you can”

 

This one is about Case 104: Mark and John. Note there are spoilers below.

I have a penchant for internet-related cases, so when I first read about the Mark and John case, it was a no-brainer that I was going to do it.

Research-wise, I watched the Channel 4 documentary “Psycho – Kill me if you Can” (as well as the drama rather loosely based on the case, UWantMe2KillHim) and went through the archives of every news article about the case. I contacted “John’s” lawyer and some people who claimed to know the boys.

The one article that always comes up at the top of the searches is an article in Vanity Fair, by a journo who had apparently met both boys. I wrote to the author of the Vanity Fair article asking if she would help me out with some of her archives, and she refused and promptly blocked me, for reasons I fail to understand because I was very polite.

I got some of the transcripts of the chat rooms through a couple of different sources and pieced together the story as well as I could from them. But OMG going through some of the trash and trying to figure out WTF these people are saying to each other was an arduous task:

 

ah big an sweaty I’ve cried so much you wouldn’t believe I don’t n wot to do

ooooooooooooooooommmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmggggggggg

o fook I can’t sleep

Ill make it up 2 u in a bed with each ova

well wat I do 4 u, he wants me 2 do 4 him

ur my gf and I Love you

I care!

We hav sumfin on him neway

he knows where they liv

u dnt av 2

well dnt ell him

if nothin else happens your not fighting

u tell him

I don’t wan u fighting

I would do nethin 4 u!

But when I’m pissed off they

dnt wanna b near me!

dont get yourself hurt

I dnt want u tlkin 2 him

so u r there 4 me

I (l) u 2 babe

I dnt want ne1 getting hurt

he needs sorting out

I woz talking 2 him 4 ages

so just w8

 

So, yeah, that was fun.

I thought I had found a brand new angle, yet to be reported anywhere else, when I found a news article about a person who had the same real name as “John”, from the same area, who was the same age. The article said that person, aged 21, had been arrested and sentenced (by the same judge) to indefinite detention for public protection after he admitted sexual activity with a child, sexual assault, and threatening behaviour.

It went against (uncorroborated) things that people who claimed to know him had said, but it seemed way too coincidental not to be the same person. I had already written up an ending that included that information in it, when I decided I had better make sure. I asked the barrister who had defended 14-year-old “John” if they were oe and the same person. He genuinely didn’t know but guided me to obtaining the court transcripts for the 21-year-old with the same name as “John”.

Nothing in the information about the background of the 21-year-old contained in the court documents matched up to what we knew about “John”. Different home life, different family, schooling and no mention of the “Mark & John” conviction among the litany of earlier crimes laid out in the documents. It remained possible (I’m not sure if under UK law, the “Mark & John” conviction would be omitted from the judges sentencing remarks due to the gag order) but certainly not definitive enough to leave in the script.

All in all, it was an enjoyable one to research, especially after the horrors of the Dnepropetrovsk Maniacs. It’s always nice when nobody dies.

Worried about being catfished? Always smart to use a VPN. I use IPVanish

7 Responses

  1. How about doing a story of my case. How I have Asperger’s was set up by police evidence from Crimebay site withheld at my trial, nearly killed in cycle accident just before trial.
    No money paid, all tick boxes cleared, but still prosecuted etc. Life destroyed now $2m loss, business and family destroyed, survival unlikley to be very long
    Your experience about being blocked by journalists is the same I have had

  2. I read your publication list, maybe it’s from a time when u were ghostwriting….. but someone named Caitlyn Dewey for The Washington Post Plagarized your piece on The Red Room Murders & The Isis Terrorists, it’s from 2015 but it’s definany plagiarism unless you wrote it

  3. Here comes another fake, bogus story remember CBS 48 Hours did a fake story on an alleged hit man for Hire in Calif. Well the man behind the scam is none other than ” Chris Monteiro” of Pirate dot London a wannabe.

    He made up the scam and was suppose to be in San Luis Obispo, CA for the case against Beau Brigham well since Chris Monteiro has serious legal issues he was refused entry into the USA, as he was denied Immunity for crimes committed. As the top Prosecutor and Investigator Neal Clayton finally realize it was all a fake, CM and his fake Dark Web or Yura and Besa Mafia are all actually Chris himself, so today a motion was filed in court to delay the fake case as Mr. Chris Monteiro has some legal troubles and can not make it ?

    He took down his email now that he is in a lie and if he did testify it would be Perjury and he would go to jail himself. Chris Monteiro is a fake and liar. I suspect tomorrow the case may end as there is NO evidence nothing but rumors all started by Yura or Chris. Even the Judge thinks the case is all Bull SHit, just like the DA and Chris

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