An imposing 6-foot-3 and 245 pounds, skinhead David Freeman was repeatedly admitted to hospitals and residential care facilities for belligerence and substance abuse. He often terrorized his parents and younger brother, and in February 1995 he and two others murdered them. In the end, David received a life sentence for first-degree murder.
Murderer. The second of three sons born to Brenda and Dennis Freeman, David Freeman had a strict Jehovah's Witness upbringing. He and his brother Bryan resented the religion??s harsh rules and restrictions, and by the time they were teenagers had become active skinheads.
An imposing 6-foot-3 and 245 pounds, David was repeatedly admitted to hospitals and residential care facilities for belligerence and substance abuse. He, Bryan and their cousin Ben Birdwell III were planning to form their own Neo-Nazi organization called "Berzerker." They threatened their parents and terrorized their 11-year-old brother. Brenda Freeman sought help, but there were no answers.
In February 1995, Brenda and David Freeman and their youngest son Erik were found slain in their home. Bryan, David and Ben Birdwell were the prime suspects. The three were quickly apprehended in Hope, Michigan, at the home of a skinhead associate, Frank Hesse. Wrongly thinking they would be tried as juveniles, the Freeman brothers made a plan to confess to the murders so that Birdwell wouldn??t be tried as an adult and face the death penalty. This pact was the beginning of a long line of lies and perjured confessions that would muddy the case.
In the end, David received a life sentence for first-degree murder. Bryan confessed to killing his mother and also received a life sentence. Ben Birdwell was found guilty of the first-degree murder of Dennis Freeman and sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
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