Lust for Blood: The Truth About Vampire Criminals

The 2009 Travis White murder is even more repulsive. Fourteen-year-old Amber Goerler was a "vampire" who had two lovers -- 27-year-old Brian Golsby and 21-year-old Kasey Dodson. All three belonged to a group alternately described by police as a gang and a cult. Goerler claimed that a 16 year old named Travis White had raped her, though there is no evidence this ever happened. There is in fact evidence it didn't since White was lured to Goerler's house with the pretext of the two "hanging out" together. What happened next was a brutal, hours-long torture session that involved as many as six people. White was bludgeoned, stabbed, and had symbols carved into his body. Some reports circulated that the three main participants had "acted as vampires" during the killing but police have been tight-lipped about exact details. People who claimed to not take part in the actual murder admitted to rolling up the boy's body in a red carpet and throwing it in the trash.

I used to call this case the Anita Blake murder because the "unconventional" relationships Goerler had formed mirrored the fictional character created by Laurell K. Hamilton. The character is a vampire hunter who keeps several vampire and werewolf lovers around. Over the course of the series Hamilton used the popular character as a platform to paint positive pictures of both polyamory and sado-masichism while treating traditional morality and conservatism with contempt. The majority of the books boil down to Blake having her growing cadre of sex partners violently dispose of people who threaten her.

One could surmise that Goerler was a fan.

But Goerler is not unique. Eighteen-year-old Stephanie Pistey accused 16-year-old Jacob Hendershot of rape. Hendershot was lured into the clutches of her group and murdered in much the same way White was, though reportedly with slightly less brutality. The five people involved ranged in ages from 17 to 30 and Pistey is believed to be the babysitter for 30-year-old Tammy Morris' two children. Pistey has denied drinking Hendershot's blood after the murder, however on her Facebook page she made this comment about the killing:

yea were merryied and hes going to die hes the one that killed jacob hendershot well i let him i wanted the blood

There's a video of Pistey being interviewed in jail where she tells reporters that since she was 12 she "knew" she was half vampire and half werewolf. She admits to drinking Jason Chase's blood on a regular basis.

You don't have to read Joseph Campbell to understand that our heroes and myths have dramatic influence on society. Today our heroes are the monsters of the past, lionized for their contempt of American morality and decency. The vampire has been transformed from Bram Stoker's symbol of continental European decadence and degeneracy into a symbol of freedom from the constraints of society. The sado-masochism inherent in the vampire/victim relationship is no longer meant to disturb or shock, but is instead used to normalize the unhealthy sexual dysfunction of a valueless culture.

There are consequences to accepting depravity and there are costs to exposing our youth to the idea that parasitically feeding off others is romantic, that pain is sexy, and that darkness is the real light. Those consequences walk among us and those costs are reflected in the dozens of police reports filed away never to see the light of day. The price of teaching our children this contempt for morality is paid for with the blood they consume.