10th-grader admits to murdering parents because they took away iPod

Norfolk, Va. – A smart and talented Norview High School 10th-grader admitted in court today he killed his parents a week before Christmas because he was weary of their seemingly routine punishments, “like my dad taking away my iPod and stuff.”

Vincent Parker attacked his mother Carol as she emerged from an upstairs bathroom in their Bland Street home. He admitted to police he doused his mother with pepper spray, stabbed her in the eye, and then beat her in the face and head with a baseball bat and a crowbar “until she stopped breathing.” A medical examiner identified 25 separate smashes and stabs to Carol Parker’s neck, face and head.

When Vincent’s father Wayne Parker came home, Vincent struck him with a crowbar and stabbed him several times. Wayne Parker lived long enough to tell police what happened. After first trying to say his father was the aggressor, Vincent admitted he killed his parents. Vincent was Carol and Wayne’s only child.

“I just remember getting mad,” he told investigators. “It’s all from my dad. All this stuff like my dad taking away my iPod and stuff.”

Those details and statements were included in the prosecutor’s “stipulation of facts” presented to a judge Wednesday. Vincent, who is 16, pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree murder in adult court. He’ll return to Norfolk Circuit Court in September to learn his sentence.

Why an honor-roll student with no criminal record snapped so violently over such benign punishments is a mystery to his family.

“He is a smart young man,” said his grandfather, Allen Taylor, father of Carol Taylor. “He is smart in school. I don’t know what happened.”

Defense attorney Emily Munn told the judge a psychiatric evaluation showed Vincent was both sane and intelligent. Even though Vincent is being sentenced as an adult, Munn told the judge she is going to ask the court to consider letting him serve at least part of his sentence in a juvenile facility. He could face decades in prison if he’s sentenced to the maximum for both murders. His grandfather is hoping for a much shorter punishment.

“I want him to get some type of counseling,” he said. “Help him to grow up and be an understanding man. Be sorry for what he did do. I told him to ask God to forgive him for what he did.”

When asked if he forgave his grandson, Taylor said: “Well, yes, I have. Because if I don’t forgive him, who will?

“We had to give it to God,” he said. “He is the only one who can help us now.”

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