Yesterday Superior Court Judge David Lowy sentenced Philip Chism to life in prison with the possibility of parole in 25 years for the murder of Danvers High School teacher Colleen Ritzer. He also sentenced Chism to two 40 year sentences for her rape and robbery committed by Chism. All three sentences will be served concurrently meaning that the earliest he could be released is in 40 years minus the time served he spent in prison awaiting trial. As I’ve mentioned before Chism could not be sentenced to life without parole since the Massachusetts Supreme Court ruled that LWOP for teens is unconstitutional as it is considered cruel and unusual.
Colleen Ritzer’s mother had this to say about the sentence…
“Today’s sentence is unacceptable and the laws must be changed,” Peggie Ritzer said at a news conference. “Colleen’s family, friends, students, and those who admired her have been given a life sentence without parole, but not the individual who committed the heinous act. This is wrong and unjust.”
I couldn’t agree more. Chism not only slashed Ms. Ritzer’s throat with a boxcutter but he also raped her and violated her with a tree branch before leaving her body in the woods while he went to a movie with the money he took from her. LWOP is the least that this monster should have received. His age at the time of the crime, 14-years-old, should not be used as excuse for such brutality. There’s no way in hell that someone his age doesn’t know what he’s doing is wrong and the law should reflect it. The more we absolve actions like this the more frequent they’ll become.
Earlier today a Massachusetts jury found 16-year-old Philip Chism guilty in the rape and murder of Colleen Ritzer. Ritzer was Chism’s math teacher at Danvers High School. in 2013 a then 14-year-old Chism brutally raped and slashed the throat of Ms. Ritzer with a box cutter and is even believed to have violated her with a tree branch. The crimes were also believed to be premeditated. Chism’s defense tried arguing that their client was suffering from a psychotic episode at the time. The prosecution argued that he was faking any kind of mental illness which also momentarily delayed his trial previously.
Chism was tried as an adult however there is a possibility for parole as the Massachusetts Supreme Court has ruled that LWOP for minors is unconstitutional in all cases. Considering the brutality of Ms. Ritzer’s death and the fact that he tried to attack a Department of Youth Services female employee while in custody should show that regardless of his age Chism should never see the light of day ever again.
Last month the trial of 16-year-old Philip Chism was halted when a judge ordered Chism to a psychiatric facility to determine his mental competency. Chism was said to be uncooperative with his defense and that he was hearing voices among other concerns. Yesterday a judge ruled that Chism is competent to stand trial and the proceedings have started up again.
Chism was 14-years-old in 2013 when he allegedly raped and killed his teacher, 24-year-old Colleen Ritzer of Danvers High School in Danvers, Massachusetts. Chism allegedly raped her not only physically but also with a tree branch before slitting her throat and leaving her body in the woods. Chism has been charged as an adult.
The details of Chism’s psychiatric report has not been made public.
Jury selection was about to begin in the trial of Philip Chism before a judge ordered him to a psychiatric hospital to determine his mental competency. Chism was 14-years-old in 2013 when he allegedly raped and killed his teacher, 24-year-old Colleen Ritzer of Danvers High School in Danvers, Massachusetts. Chism allegedly raped her not only physically but also with a tree branch before slitting her throat and leaving her body in the woods. Chism has been charged as an adult.
Chism is said to be uncooperative in aiding his defense by not talking to his attorneys. His defense also claims that he is suicidal, has banged his head against the floor and is hearing voices. The prosecution believes he’s faking it and I tend to agree. I’ve previously read and posted about subjects who have used the ‘hearing voices’ excuse to angle for a stay in a mental institution rather than prison. Also as far as I know, and please correct me if I’m wrong, there has been no previous history of Chism having auditory hallucinations so I seriously doubt he’s having them now. I don’t blame the judge for ordering more evaluation since all bases should be covered to limit appeals if Chism should be convicted and in my opinion he should be.
Back in March a Massachusetts judge ruled that the confession that Philip Chism made in the brutal murder and Rape of Coleen Ritzer is inadmissible. The judge ruled that he had doubts that Chism was aware of his Miranda rights so his confession and the evidence retrieved from his cell phone are now inadmissible.
In my amateur opinion I think that this is only a small roadblock on the way to Chism’s conviction. Considering not only in the violent way he allegedly killed her by cutting her throat with a box cutter, raped her and left a note by her body that said “I hate you all”, I think there is probably enough forensic evidence that will lead to Chism’s conviction.
Philip Chism, 15, charged with killing teacher, accused in assault:
Reports: Philip Chism, Accused of Killing a Danvers Teacher, Allegedly Attacked Youth Services Worker:
Phillip Chism was 14 when he allegedly rapes his teacher with a tree branch then slashed her throat with a box cutter. He then left the body of 24-year-old Colleen Ritzer of Danvers High School in Danvers, Massachusetts, in the woods then went to a movie.
While the now 15-year-old Chism has been charged as an adult in her murder he’s only been charged as a juvenile in her rapes. I guess that’s why he’s in a Department of Youth Services facility. It’s now being reported that Chism attacked a female employee of the facility in Dorchester. He allegedly followed her into a locker room with what they’re calling a ‘pencil-like’ object. Other than that no details of the attack have been made public yet.
He should not be in a youth services facility, he should be in jail awaiting trial. The crimes that he’s accused of are no joke. He brutally raped and violated and murdered Colleen Ritzer and his latest attack sounds like he was trying for a repeat performance. An alleged murderer and rapist like this should be treated with kid gloves. He should be treated like the butcher and sadist he is.
Chism Indicted on Additional Count of Rape in Ritzer Murder:
Previously 14-year-old Philip Chism was charged with the rape and murder of his teacher, 24-year-old Colleen Ritzer of Danvers High School in Danvers, Massachusetts. At that time the rape charge stemmed from accusations that Chism raped her with a tree branch. Now investigators are saying that Chism also raped her in the ‘traditional’ sense.
Chism has been charged as an adult in the murder but as a youthful offender in the rapes. Why? Is raping a woman once then again with a tree branch any less heinous than slashing her throat and leaving her to die? If you’re going to charge him as an adult, as he should be, try him as an adult for all his charges and not some half-assed blended charges.
UPDATE 1/30/2014: Chism has pleaded not guilty to the latest rape charge.
UPDATE 8/14/2014: Chism will now officially be tried as an adult for Colleen Ritzer’s rape and murder.
Danvers, Mass., 14-year-old accused of raping — and murdering — high school teacher Colleen Ritzer:
One of the stories I’ve been woefully behind on is the murder of 24-year-old Colleen Ritzer, a teacher at Danvers High School in Danvers, Massachusetts. If being murdered by one of your 14-year-old students and having your body dumped in the woods naked from the waist down wasn’t bad enough now it’s been revealed that Philip Chism not only allegedly killed her by slashing her throat with a box cutter but he supposedly robbed and raped her as well.
Chism’s grand jury indictment revealed that he is believed to have robbed Ms. Ritzer of credit cards, her iPhone and her underwear. Chism is believed to have violated her with an object. The object in question is said to have been a tree branch. He is also said to have left a note by her body that said “I hate you all” which still remains unexplained.
Some seem to think that it was Ms. Ritzer’s mentioning the state of Tennessee to Chism, which made him visibly upset, as possibly the motive in her murder. Chism has moved to Mass. from Tennessee while his parents were going through a divorce.
Chism is facing the murder charge as an adult but the rape and robbery charges as a juvenile. More than likely those charges will be upgraded to adult status as well.
Chism has pleaded not guilty. I haven’t heard of what the defense will be but I would bet it will be the old standard of “He’s not an adult and doesn’t have a fully functioning brain” bullcrap. I don’t believe the brains of 14-year-olds are that easily pushed towards violence. If they were we would be seeing a lot more crimes like this than we do.
As it should be Chism is being held without bail.
Teen stayed after final bell with Danvers High School teacher before killing her, buying Wendy’s meal with her credit card:
EXCLUSIVE: Student,14, PLANNED to ‘slash teacher to death’ but refuses to say why, police reveal:
As I’m sure you’ve heard by now another teacher lost their life this past week at the hands of student. 24-year-old Colleen Ritzer of Danvers High School in Danvers, Massachusetts, was murdered allegedly by 14-year-old student Philip Chism. Ritzer had asked Chism to stay after school in order to prepare for a test. Chism is believed to have followed her into a bathroom where he struck her then slut her throat with a boxcutter. He then put her in a recycling bin and wheeled her out to the woods behind the school where he left her body partially covered in leaves.
What you may not know is that it appears that this wasn’t a crime of opportunity but premeditated murder. Chism had not only packed the boxcutter and also white gloves that day but also packed a change of clothes supposedly so he wouldn’t be caught wearing bloody clothes.
So far Chism is said to be cooperating with police but won’t tell them why he killed her. The Daily Mail is going with a theory that Chism had made romantic advances towards his victim which they say were spurned. Take that with a grain of salt because the Daily Mail is either spot on or dead wrong. They usually don’t have a much of an in-between.
In case there are other high school Romeos out there who do think they can score with their teacher stop right now. All those stories about hot female teachers who molest their students are the exception and not the rule. In reality you’re just some high school kid who has nothing to offer a woman with a career. Not only that it’s illegal.
Chism has been charged as an adult.