In this publication, we talk about everything you need to know about the Menendez Brothers. Menendez Brothers Story, Menendez Brothers Sentence, Menendez Brothers Age, Menendez Brothers Father, Menendez Brothers Wives, and others. These brothers are referred to as Joseph Lyle Menendez and Erik Galen Menendez.
Menendez Brothers Age
Erik Galen Menendez was born on November 27, 1970, and Joseph Lyle Menendez was born on January 10, 1968. Menendez Brothers are American brothers who were convicted in 1996 for the murders of their parents. Their father was called José Menendez and their mother was Mary Menendez.
During the trial, the Menéndez brothers said they killed their father because they were afraid he would kill them if they exposed him to years of sexual, emotional, and physical abuse, while the prosecution claimed they did it to inherit their father’s multimillion-dollar inheritance.
They were tried separately at first, with one jury assigned to each brother. Both juries reached a stalemate, resulting in a mistrial. They were tried jointly by a single jury for the second trial, which found them guilty and sentenced them to life in prison.
Menendez Brothers Father
José Enrique Menéndez was born in Havana, Cuba, on May 6, 1944. He came to the United States at the age of 16, shortly after the Cuban Revolution began. José met Mary Louise “Kitty” Andersen (1941–1989) while attending Southern Illinois University.
They married in 1963 and moved to New York City, where José went to Queens College to study accounting. On January 10, 1968, the couple welcomed their first child, Joseph Lyle Menéndez, who goes by his middle name.
After Lyle was born, Kitty left her teaching profession, and the family relocated to Gloucester Township, New Jersey, where Erik was born on November 27, 1970. The family lived in Hopewell Township, New Jersey, and both brothers went to Princeton Day School.
José’s job as a corporate executive moved him and his family to Beverly Hills, California, in 1986. Erik began high school the following year at Beverly Hills High, where he received mediocre grades and demonstrated a great skill for tennis, ranking 44th in the United States for 18-and-under players.
Menendez Brothers Story
José and Kitty were lying on a couch in the den of their Beverly Hills mansion on the evening of August 20, 1989, when the Menendez Brothers entered the den with shotguns. With a Mossberg 12-gauge shotgun, José was shot in the back of the head. The gunfire jolted Kitty awake, and she leapt from the couch. She was wounded in the leg and collapsed, then was shot multiple times in the arm, chest, and face, rendering her unrecognizable.
Lyle called the cops and yelled, “Someone killed my parents!” when the brothers got home later that night. When the cops came, the brothers informed them that the murders happened when they were at a movie theater watching Batman and subsequently at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium for the annual “Taste of L.A.” event.
They did not, however, order the brothers to submit to gunshot residue testing to determine whether they had recently used a firearm because there was no clear proof that they were involved at the time.
The killings of their parents were linked to the boys’ excessive spending in the months following their deaths, according to the authorities. Lyle purchased a Rolex watch, a Porsche Carrera, a $132,000 townhouse in West Windsor, New Jersey, and Chuck’s Spring Street Cafe in Princeton, New Jersey, a Buffalo wing restaurant. Erik enlisted the help of a full-time tennis coach and entered a series of events in Israel.
They soon moved out of the Beverly Hills mansion, opting to live in adjoining condominiums in Marina del Rey. They also went on abroad excursions to the Caribbean and London in their deceased mother’s Mercedes-Benz SL convertible, dined lavishly, and cruised around Los Angeles in her Mercedes-Benz SL convertible.
It is estimated that they spent roughly $700,000 in the time between the murders and their arrests, although family members later refuted the brothers’ spending claims, claiming that there were no differences in their spending before and after the deaths. During the initial stages of the inquiry, the police attempted to focus their search on people with motives for killing José and Kitty.
They also looked into possible mob leads, but nothing came of it. The authorities believed the brothers were most likely the perpetrators as the inquiry progressed, because they had apparent financial motives and were lavishly spending money following the murders.
The police persuaded Craig Cignarelli, one of Erik’s closest high school friends and a tennis partner, to wear a wire while having lunch with him at a local beachfront restaurant in an attempt to elicit a confession from him. Erik initially denied killing his parents when asked by Craig, but later confessed to his psychologist, Jerome Oziel, who informed his mistress, Judalon Smyth.
Smyth later broke up with Oziel and told the police about the brothers’ involvement. Lyle was arrested on March 8, 1990, and Erik turned himself in three days later after returning to Los Angeles from Israel. Both were detained without bail and kept apart from one another.
Judge James Albrecht determined in August 1990 that cassettes of Erik and Oziel’s talks were admissible evidence because Oziel claimed Lyle intimidated him and violated doctor–patient privilege. Albrecht’s decision was overturned, and the case was postponed for two years.
Except for the audio in which Erik discusses the murders, the Supreme Court of California concluded in August 1992 that the most of these tapes were admissible. Following that ruling, a grand jury in Los Angeles County indicted the boys for the murders of their parents in December 1992.
Menendez Brothers Sentence
When Court TV televised the Menéndez trial in 1993, it created a national phenomenon. Represented by their defense lawyer, Leslie Abramson, the brothers alleged that they were driven to murder by a lifetime of torture at the hands of their parents, including sexual abuse at the hands of their father, who was described as a ruthless perfectionist and pedophile.
Their mother, on the other hand, was portrayed as an enabling, greedy, mentally unstable alcoholic and drug addict who encouraged her husband’s actions and was also aggressive towards the brothers at times. The claims against the pair were backed up by their families, who testified as witnesses.
The defense presented physical evidence in the form of nude and sexual images of Lyle and Erik’s genitalia taken by their father when they were children. The prosecution, on the other hand, claimed that the murders were carried out for monetary benefit.
Pam Bozanich, Lyle’s prosecutor, stated that “guys cannot be raped because they lack the proper tools.” Lester Kuriyama, Erik’s prosecutor, stated that Erik was homosexual and that the sexual assault was mutual. Lyle and Erik claimed that the sexual abuse had started up again a few weeks before the deaths, resulting in multiple family fights. They further alleged that their father threatened to murder them unless they kept the abuse hidden.
Around this time, the boys discovered that their parents were concealing rifles in their bedrooms, prompting them to purchase shotguns of their own for protection. On August 20, 1989, a few minutes before Kitty and José were killed, there was a final confrontation inside the house den. The brothers then claimed that their father had shut the door to the den at that time, which was unusual. Lyle and Erik went outside the home to load their shotguns, paranoid that they would be slain by their own parents. “As soon as I walked into the room, I just started firing,” Erik explained.
The trial resulted in a stalemate between two juries, prompting Los Angeles County District Attorney Gil Garcetti to announce that the brothers will be retried. The second trial received less attention, partly due to Judge Stanley Weisberg’s refusal to allow cameras into the courtroom.
Weisberg also did not allow much defense testimony about the sexual abuse allegations during the second trial, and the jury was not allowed to vote on manslaughter charges instead of murder charges. Both brothers were subsequently found guilty of two counts of first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder, and they were sentenced to life in prison without the chance of release during the penalty phase of the trial.
The abuse defense was not a factor in the jury’s decision, but the death sentence was not imposed because neither brother had a criminal record or a history of violence prior to the murders. Despite all of the evidence and testimony, the jury in the penalty phase rejected the defense’s contention that the brothers killed their parents out of fear, because it was believed that they committed the killings in order to inherit their father’s money. During the penalty phase of the trial, Abramson (the brothers’ defense lawyer) allegedly encouraged a defense witness called William Vicary to modify his own notes, but the district attorney’s office chose not to prosecute Abramson.
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Both brothers also filed motions for a mistrial, arguing that Abramson’s probable misbehavior and incompetent counsel caused them permanent harm during the penalty phase. Weisberg sentenced the brothers to life in prison without the possibility of parole on July 2, 1996, as well as to consecutive sentences for the killings and allegations of murder conspiracy. The California Department of Corrections separated the brothers and sent them to different jails for their pretrial confinement.
They were segregated from other detainees because they were considered maximum-security inmates.Lyle was transferred from Mule Creek State Prison in northern California to the Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility in San Diego County, where they were kept in separate sections, until February 2018. Erik also served time at the Pleasant Valley Correctional Facility in Coalinga, California.
Lyle and Erik were reunited for the first time since they began serving their sentences nearly 22 years ago on April 4, 2018, when they were put into the same housing unit. At their first meeting in the housing unit, the brothers sobbed and hugged each other. Inmates who agree to participate in education and rehabilitation programs without causing disruptions are placed in the unit where they are.
Menendez Brothers Marriage in Prison
Lyle married Anna Eriksson on July 2, 1996, in a ceremony presided over by Judge Nancy Brown and attended by Abramson and his aunt Marta Menéndez; they divorced on April 1, 2001, after Eriksson found Lyle was reportedly cheating on her with another woman. Lyle married Rebecca Sneed in a Mule Creek State Prison visiting area in November 2003; they had known one other for around ten years before their engagement.
Erik married Tammi Ruth Saccoman in a prison waiting room at Folsom State Prison on June 12, 1999. “Our wedding cake was a Twinkie,” Tammi later said. We had to make do with what we had. Until I had to leave, it was a fantastic ceremony. That was a rather solitary evening.
In an interview with ABC News in October 2005, she defined her connection with Erik as “It’s something I’ve wished for for a long time. And it’s simply something unique that I never imagined I’d have.” Tammi self-published a book called They Said We’d Never Make It My Life with Erik Menéndez in 2005, however she revealed on CNN’s Larry King Live that Erik also contributed to the book “I worked on the book for a long time and did a lot of editing.
She said in an interview with People magazine: “It’s difficult for me not to have sex in my life, but it’s not an issue for me. I need to be emotionally invested, and I am emotionally invested in Erik… My family has no idea what I’m talking about. Some of them simply threw up their hands when things became bad.” Tammi also revealed that she and her daughter travel 150 miles (240 kilometers) every weekend to see Erik, whom she refers to as her “Earth Dad.” Erik claimed, despite his life sentence: “Tammi is the only thing that keeps me going. I’m having trouble remembering the sentence. When I do, it’s with a deep sense of sadness and dread. I start to break out in a cold sweat. It’s so terrifying that I haven’t been able to accept it.”
Mrs. Menéndez, an A&E documentary on Tammi, was released in 2010. The Menendez Murders: Erik Tells All, a five-part documentary shown on A&E in late 2017, in which Erik recalls the murders and their aftermath over the phone. The series also includes new interviews with prosecutors, law enforcement, close family and friends, and medical professionals, as well as never-before-seen pictures.
Menendez Brothers Photos
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