Lyle and Erik Menendez

From Academic Kids

Joseph Lyle (Lyle) Menendez (born January 10, 1968) and brother Erik Galen (Erik) Menendez (born November 27, 1971) were arrested in March, 1990, for the murders of their parents in August, 1989.

The brothers were convicted of shooting their parents Jose and Kitty to death on August 20, 1989. The murders occurred in the den of the family's home in Beverly Hills, California. The brothers then drove off and dumped their shotguns on Mulholland Drive. Finally they bought tickets at a local movie theater to use as an alibi. When the brothers returned home, Lyle called 9-1-1 and cried, "Somebody killed my parents!" In the months following, the brothers led a life of luxury and lavish spending, adding to suspicions of investigators that they were involved in the deaths of their parents. Prosecutors later alleged that the brothers spent about $1 million in their first six months as orphans.

The Menendez brothers and the murder of their parents became a national sensation when the new television network, Court TV, broadcast the trial in 1993. The younger brother's defense attorney, Leslie Abramson, vaulted to fame with her defense, alleging that the brothers were driven to murder by a lifetime of abuse from their parents. Despite the competent defense, the past criminal records of the brothers stood in contrast to the "escape from parental abuse" theory.

On July 2, 1996, Judge Stanley M. Weisberg sentenced Lyle and Erik Menendez to life in prison without the possibility of parole. Judge Weisberg sentenced the brothers to consecutive sentences for the murders and the charge of conspiracy to commit murder.

Lyle is being held at the California Correctional Institution at Tehachapi. Erik is at the California State Prison in Sacramento County. Each brother has married since entering prison, but neither is allowed conjugal visits. Under the terms of the sentences for their multiple crimes, they are expected to spend the remainder of their natural lives in prison, and will die without consummating their marriages.

External link

  • Detailed background of the Menendez brothers and their crimes [1] (http://www.crimelibrary.com/notorious_murders/famous/menendez)

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