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10 Cruel Parents Who Killed Their own Children

6. On May 11, 2012, in an attempt to frame his ex-mistress and win custody of his children, Mick Philbott and his wife Mairead Duffy unintentionally killed their six children. They ignited their house in Derby while the children were asleep upstairs. All of them died of excessive smoke inhalation.

Mick and Mairead Philpott
Image Credit : BBC.com , ITV / dailyrecord.co.uk

Mick Philbott had a history of violence and abuse towards the women in his life. He fathered seventeen children from various relationships and lived on state benefits.  At one point in his life, he lived in a council house with his wife Mairead Duffy and their four children, mistress Lisa Wills and their three children, and one child of Wills from a previous relationship.

In February 2012, Wills left Philbott and went to live with her sister and brother-in-law, taking the children with her. This led to a custody battle over their four children.

On May 11, 2012, Philbott’s house in Derby caught fire at around 4 a.m. His six children: Duwayne, 13, Jade, ten, John, nine, Jesse six, and Jayden, five, died of excessive smoke inhalation. A police search of the scene revealed the presence of petrol in the letterbox. The fire was not accidental.

Philbott’s and Willis’s custody battle caused the police to suspect Willis for the arson and murder. They initially arrested Willis along with her cousin and brother-in-law, but they were released without any charge.

The police then bugged Philbott’s hotel room. There, they found evidence that confirmed his involvement in the fire. Mick Philbott, his wife Mairead Duffy, and their friend Paul Mosley had planned the arson to frame Willis for the crime. This would have helped Philboot to win the custody of the children and eventually claim benefits for them. (1, 2)

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7. Olga Freeman suffocated her autistic and disabled son with a sponge at their home in Acton, London.  The mother suffered a mental breakdown from the built-up pressure of parenting a special-needs child. She had previously claimed to be the Messiah that will save the world.

Olga Freeman
Image Credit: BBC.com, Pixabay.com

Dylan Freeman was a bright and inquisitive ten-year-old but had difficulties in language and communication. He had autism and suffered from Cohen syndrome.

His mother, Olga Freeman, suffered from severe depression and impaired mental health but had cared for Dylan’s special needs for many years.

However, the strain of her son’s abnormalities had built up, especially during the lockdown, and she suffered a mental breakdown. Olga claimed to be a messiah and a savior of the world.

On August 16, 2020, in a state of extreme psychosis, she killed Dylan by suffocating him with a sponge in her bed surrounded by toys. (1, 2)

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8. Gary Sherrill axed his 13-year-old son at his home in northern Phoenix, believing him to be the demon that was trying to eat him. The man was unemployed and that probably disturbed his mental stability.

Gary Sherrill
Image Credit: Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office/Nydailynews.com, Pixabay.com

Fifty-one-year-old Gary Sherill lived in a gritty apartment on the fringe of northern Phoenix. He led a strange life with boarded-up and blacked-out windows. He was unemployed, and that took a toll on his mental health.

He was divorced, and his 13-year-old son would visit him. After one such visit, when he didn’t come back to his mother, she called the police to check on him.

When the police arrived, they discovered the boy had been hacked to death with an ax. Sherill immediately admitted to the crime. He then claimed that the child was possessed by a demon and had tried to eat him. So he killed him. (source)

9. Alexandra Tobias, who had recently joined a Facebook advocacy group against baby-shaking, shook her three-month-old baby to death. The 22-year-old mother from Florida was playing Farmville and the baby wouldn’t stop crying. Annoyed, she shook the baby twice and smashed his head into the computer screen.

Alexandra Tobias
Image credits: Jacksonville.com, OpturaDesign/Shutterstock.com

Alexandra Tobias was playing Farmville on Facebook. Her three-month-old son Dylan Lee Edmondson was crying and this disturbed her.

Annoyed, she shook the baby. She then smoked a cigarette to calm herself as he wouldn’t stop crying. Enraged, she shook the baby again. This time he must have hit his head and died.

Later, when in prison, Tobias told an inmate that she had smashed the baby’s head into the computer screen.

Ironically, a month before the killing, she had joined a Facebook group that advocated against baby-shaking. (1, 2)

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10. On June 22, 2019, Travis Stackhouse from Milwaukee fatally punched his son in the abdomen because the five-year-old ate his Father’s Day cake. He was upset because he didn’t get to eat enough.

Travis Stackhouse Sr.
Image Credit: Fox6now.com, Unsplash.com

Twenty-nine-year-old Travis Stackhouse Sr. reported that his five-year-old son died after falling on the stairs. However, an autopsy revealed that his abdomen had received a blunt force trauma. Also, there was a cut on his lips, and both his eyes were bruised.

Owing to the nature of the injuries, the police didn’t believe the story. Then, one of the dead boy’s siblings told police that his brother never fell from the stairs. Instead, his father had punched and hit him across the face.

The father eventually confessed that he had punched his son in the stomach. He was upset because the boy ate his Father’s Day cake and he only had eaten one piece. (1, 2)

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