Jonathan Samuel

Name: Jonathan Samuel
Died: March 24, 2014
Age at death: 13
Cause of death: Murder (Shot and stabbed)
Location: Coeur D’Alene, Idaho, USA

Jonathan, murdered by his older brother, had Down syndrome and autism. He lived with his brother and father in Cour D’Alene, Idaho. Jonathan loved building with Legos. His favorite movie was Godzilla. He was “a funny kid… always happy.” He memorized people’s birthdates for fun.

Jonathan’s father was a recovering painkiller addict and his mother had lost custody of them after being charged with “willful cruelty to a child”. His brother had a history of violence; he often hit Jonathan, and on one occasion he had stabbed a pencil through Jonathan’s jaw. He had also shot the family’s pet chicken with a BB gun.

Jonathan’s father, Eldon Samuel Jr., liked to dress up as a zombie on Halloween. He may or may not have been violent (his killer says he was abusive). He had recently moved the family to Cour D’Alene, hoping for a better environment for his sons, and to be closer to his own father. The family would rent and watch movies together. A grown brother says that Jonathan’s father was “starting to be a good dad”.

On the day of the murder, Jonathan’s teenage brother got into an argument with their father. Trying to protect himself, Jonathan was hiding under the bed when his brother came for him and shot him, then stabbed him to death with a machete.

Jonathan’s killer was charged as an adult and has confessed to the murders, later admitting that he hated his brother and had been planning to kill his brother and father for eight months. Jonathan’s killer blamed him for his actions and said that while he slightly regretted killing his father, he did not regret killing Jonathan, who, he said, was the cause of all the family’s problems, having caused their father to get addicted and their mother to leave the family. He also claimed his father was abusive.

Jonathan’s brother was sentenced to 20 years in prison for first- and second-degree murder.

Teen confesses to killing family using a machete, guns and knife
Judge in family deaths case says suspect, 14, cited brother’s autism
Coeur D’alene Double Killing Leaves Family Grieving
Jury hears more about brother who was killed
Idaho teen sentenced 20 years in deaths of father, brother

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