Unfathomable: Grief, shock, and questions follow family slaying

"The shining light in the room." That's how Jenny Clark remembers her friend Beth Walton, the 49-year-old mother of three who died along with her children in a murder-suicide that police say appears to have been perpetrated by her older son.

"She was a loving, caring, wonderful spirit, a very devoted mother, a very encouraging and supportive friend," says Clark, who met Walton, a C-ville Weekly ad exec who worked under the name Beth McLaughlin, six years ago when the two women's children attended Charlottesville Catholic School and both families lived in the Forest Lakes neighborhood. The children would play together, Clark recalls, and she and Walton would go on walks and talk over coffee.

Walton's children, 19-year-old Noah, 16-year-old Lily, and 14-year-old Andrew Romando, were also widely loved, as evidenced by the thousands of members who have joined Facebook memorial pages set up in the honor of each, and where friends have posted memories of good times shared.

"Your charisma, positivity, and kindness affected everyone around you, whether you realized it or not," wrote one friend of Lily Romando's, who, like many of the nearly 4,500 members on the "RIP Lily Romando" Facebook page, knew Lily from her summers spent at Camp Alleghany in West Virginia. The teen's creative talents are also frequently cited, particularly her gift for photography.

"She was out all over, taking pictures," recalls Susan Oliveri, who taught Lily photography at Albemarle High School in ninth and tenth grade before Lily transferred to Murray High School to start her junior year. "She was open to learning new things," Oliveri recalls, "but she was also wonderful at assisting other students."

Often Lily's photographic subjects were her family– her mother, brothers, and father, Charlottesville resident Peter Romando, from whom Walton was divorced– and Oliveri says Lily's descriptions of them were always loving and seemed to reflect a normal family dynamic.

"She'd tell funny stories, and sometimes talk about her little brother being a little annoying, but she thought he was adorable," Oliveri recalls Lily saying of Andrew, an eighth grader at Sutherland Middle School, who, according to his obituary, loved lacrosse, outdoor adventures, and spending time with his family. "They were very close," Oliveri says.

This past summer was also a particularly joyful time for Walton, who'd remarried in June.

"She was really, really happy," says Clark.

All happiness was shattered just before midnight on August 28 when, for reasons that remain unclear and may never fully be understood, Noah Philip Romando allegedly shot and killed his mother and his two younger siblings. According to sources, Walton's husband, Don Walton, was not at home because he works out of town during the week.

The 911 call, which was placed from the house at 3880 Stony Point Road, across the street from Stony Point Elementary School, came in at 11:43pm. According to an August 29 affidavit filed in Albemarle County Circuit Court in support of a search warrant, the caller told the operator that people had been shot, then the call abruptly terminated. The communications operator allegedly heard a gunshot before the phone went dead.

When emergency responders arrived minutes later, according to the affidavit, they discovered two deceased females and one deceased male. One male victim, whom police have said was not the shooter and who is therefore believed to have been Andrew, was transported to the hospital and later died of his injuries.

Among evidence collected from the house were five cartridge casings with fragments, a Ruger 10-22 rifle with bullets, one white piece of paper with a red stain, an envelope, a red and black motorola cell phone, and "primer" residue from both Noah Romando and Walton. The warrant indicates that investigators found a handgun by the deceased male, though no handgun was listed on the search inventory.

For the first 36 hours, police remained tightlipped about what had happened inside the tidy one-story, three-bedroom house. But when police announced Noah to be the suspected killer on August 30, his life came under sudden scrutiny.

Among details to emerge was his apparent presence on the Satanic International Network, a website that has been described as "Facebook for Satanists."

A user with the screen name Noah8, and with a profile picture that matches one of Noah Romando's Facebook wall photos, lists his gender as "beast" and describes himself as "a self-styled Satanist."

And yet while the word "satanist" to many suggests evil and darkness, Noah8 offered an open-minded explanation for his presence.

"I am on here to talk to intelligent human beings, which are hard to find these days," he writes. "If there is anyone I cannot stand, it is people that hate on other people's religions and racists. Honestly, there is no f**king point."

Romando's friends rejected the idea that Noah, a longtime member of the Church of the Incarnation Catholic Church and a former Charlottesville Catholic School student, might have been influenced by the site or its users.

"I attended Catholic school with him for seven years, went to the same Catholic Church as him, and had the pleasure of serving with him on various church-related councils. The quote you pulled from this 'noah8' character was most definitely him simply searching for 'intelligent' conversations with other human beings," wrote one friend in an unsolicited email to this reporter.

Other friends described him as "goofy" and "always kind," and the presence of more than 700 supporters on the RIP Noah Romando Facebook page suggests he was not like other killers who have made headlines in recent years, according to an author versed in social anxiety, which has been linked to acts of violence.

"As a community, our fundamental concern is how to prevent this type of violence," says Amy Lemley, the Charlottesville-based author of two psychology-based books including Beyond Shyness: How to Conquer Social Anxieties. "Are there parallels with Aurora killer James Holmes, Virginia Tech shooter Seung-Hui Cho, and Columbine's Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris?"

While Lemley stresses she did not know Noah Romando, she says the outpouring of grief and his connection to so many people suggests "he was not outwardly that type of loner."

According to a forensic psychiatrist, Romando's involvement on a Satanic website would not likely be the cause of his murderous actions, even if it did in any way influence his thinking.

"It just suggests someone searching, looking for a place to belong," says J. Anderson Thomson, a University of Virginia-based forensic psychiatrist who consults on murder cases across the country, and who says that the motive in situations in which someone kills his family, then himself, "comes down to basic human emotions."

Another UVA-based expert, Dewey Cornell, a forensic psychologist and leading authority on homicidal youth violence, joins Thomson in cautioning against drawing any conclusions about motivation without significant insight into medical history, family dynamics, and a search for earlier signs of violent tendencies.

"Where there is suicide as well as homicide, it is likely that the person has been suffering for quite some time and sees no other course of action," says Cornell, "which of course suggests a profound impairment in judgment that could be brought on by severe depression or some other mental illness."

In cases where there is no history of mental illness, Cornell points out that some forms of hallucinogenic drugs can also trigger a psychotic reaction. Investigators have not released the results of any autopsy.

"All homicides make sense in some way once you know enough about the person and his or her state of mind," says Cornell. "There is no justification for this kind of terrible crime, but there is some kind of  explanation, and we want to understand these crimes so that we can learn how to prevent them."

To that end, police will inevitably conduct interviews with people who knew Noah Romando and came in contact with him soon before his death, and they'll scour computer records for signs of his state of mind. If he left a note, as the piece of paper on the evidence list might suggest, Anderson says that too will offer insight, as will toxicology reports, which are standard in such cases.

Noah Romando's last publicly visible online activity on Facebook occurred just hours before he apparently ended his own life and killed his family. At about 8pm on Tuesday– less than four hours before the 911 call was placed– he updated his profile picture to a black and white image of him, dressed in Adidas athletic shorts and a dark short-sleeved shirt, swinging on what appears to be a playground rope.

After several joking comments about Tarzan, one friend has a playful suggestion that Romando should show off his arms to impress girls.

"Next time wear a tank top so the chicks can see the pistols," the friend writes, prompting a brief and seemingly innocuous reply from Romando: "great idea."

Three hours later, the 911 call was placed.

In the days since the tragedy, the County School system has rushed to provide grief counseling to devastated students and staff, and psychiatrist Thomson says the nature of this crime makes grieving more complicated.

"There's massive grief; four individuals who are gone," says Thomson, noting the complication that the person who committed such a heinous crime is also a person who is loved. "There's enormous fury at the perpetrator, but clearly, the perpetrator was in pain."

At Albemarle High School, where students created a memorial for Lily on Friday, August 31, then released balloons in her honor during that evening's football game, her photography teacher says that watching her students suffer the loss is excruciating.

"It's a loss of innocence," says Oliveri. "We all can't imagine she won't be bouncing in, wanting to show us her pictures. To me, it's been a bad dream that I hoped I'd wake up from."

–story originally posted at 4:38pm on August 30 and rewritten for print publication at 4:54pm on Tuesday, September 4
–prior headlines were "Son suspected: Did Satanism play role in murder-suicide?" and "Son suspected: Answers sought in murder-suicide"

Correction: UVA Dewey Cornell was originally described as a forensic psychiatrist. He is a forensic psychologist.–ed

210 comments

An angst-ridden poem, by an unknown author, seems to voice feelings of alienation from family.

"I never never want to go home because I haven't got one anymore," reads one stanza. Another portion reads: "And if a 10-ton truck kills the both of us, to die by your side, the pleasure and the privilege is mine."

These are lyrics from The Smiths song, There is a Light That Never Goes Out. Half A Person is also a Smiths song. She must have been a fan of the group. Not all Smiths fans are depressed or angst ridden.

Thanks for pointing that out. I've corrected, and added a few more details from the Tumblr.--Courteney Stuart

*Edit: "Noah Romando is not the only of the victims whose with publicly visible online profiles or blogs. "

For ***k's sake Courtney. Don't try to contact the father of three children two days after their violent death. What kind of heartless ghouls are you Hook staff?

@Dolemite, they're journalists. It's what journalists do. It's part of their job, as heartless as it seems.

"show off the pistols" is another way of saying "show off the guns" aka muscles, holy.. people who write for the news sure do twist things to the way they want them to sound. and yeah.. calling the step father and father the day after? great idea. im surprised you people even have jobs. makes me sick.

I'm an admin over at SIN, the site that had Noah's profile you cited in your blog. I'm a little annoyed at how you are framing this incident in the context of your blog title. Instead of jumping the gun with sensational and typical speculation about Noah's 'motivations', perhaps you should refrain from interpreting his activity on SIN in such a negative and counterproductive way. There were no indications that his involvement at the site influenced anything negative in his life, and from the people that interacted with him on our chat feature, he was known as a quiet and unassuming user that functioned in a socially acceptable manner. Before you go hounding his surviving family members, please keep this in mind and try not to spin your speculation as involvement in some sort of 'dark side' that family members weren't aware about. The social networks that Noah was involved in don't bear any responsibility for his actions.

Have the following been varified:

This is the same Noah Romando?

Noah Romando posted this himself?

Clock time and date of the actual posting?

You people make me sick! Anything to make a buck, even if it is at the expense and misery of another Human Being. You do not deserve to be consider a human, you are a bottom feeding animal.

@sonofject - couldn't have said it better myself.

and afterwards, mentioning lily's tumblr blog full of "angst".. she is a teenager. they all post that kind of stuff. the type of music people listen to doesn't mean they are killers, there are cab drivers with phd's in the world too.

noah is curious about satanism.. oh it was him.
great evidence, not.

@Jeff D There's a chat feature on the SIN site that verifies through cam chat that it was indeed Noah, and that profile was his. He frequented the chat often as evidenced by other users that interacted with him.

Shame on you for publishing this Hook. Good journalism involves facts, not sensational speculation.

Deleted by moderator.

I'll bet you're super-proud of your Google skills. But this is shameless.

I had a better opinion of you, Courtney, but I am rethinking that opinion.

Interacting with Noah, whether it be in chat or messages, i had never known him to be anything but actually jovial and funny. It is disgusting and unthinkable that this is what 'news' has come down to. For us who knew Noah, we know better than to judge him by a few posts on the internet, know better than to believe lies spouted from the mouths of random people. I wish people would stop making assumptions based on someones online profiles. Stop making assumptions at all. Posting lyrics? Commenting on a picture? Oh he must have been preparing for something right?.<<

That didnt post my whole comment.......<<< SARCASM. People do things like that all the time.. People need to get off the pedestal, you wouldn't want someone talking like this about your son? your husband? your friend? I didnt think so.

And congratulations. More comments = more traffic = more ad revenue.

I hope you sleep well at night.

Killing the innocent, and killing yourself, are very unSatanic. We love life. If he truly did it, he was not a Satanist. He was ill.

Andrew went to Sutherland, by the way. Probably why Jouett principal had no comment.

The way these people make satanists out to be is that we're all an animal killing, bloodbath taking, murdering horde. Its a shame and travesty what happened. Don't disrespect the dead with your muck-raking and slander a person when they are no longer here to defend their self.

Having taken a look at the 'Satanic International Network':

It appears the founder is a San Diego surfer-dude whose main theme is promoting homophobia.

Its membership is a hodge-podge collection of neo-Nazis, extremist left-wingers, homophobes, speed metal fans, punkers, emo-posers, fashion addicts, tattoo freaks, fans of fantasy fiction, and meth-heads. A few claim to perform 'rituals' in their home and feeling aroused. Some claim to be anti-religion while others claim to be devout Christians or devotees of other major religions.

Homophobia itself seems to be a top theme amongst the members despite their presented image of looking like cast members from the Rocky Horror Pictureshow--featuring 'I'm cool' pics and underwear-in-the-mirror pics.

All-in-all, the S.I.N. members each appear to be rather brainless and aimless people who have latched onto one out-of-date fashion trend or another and imagine themselves to be cutting-edge anti-establishment--despite all evidence to the contrary. Their level of knowledge of subject-matter is blatantly close to non-existent as they spew on about Babylon, vegetarian virtues, politics, Hitler, Catholicism, etcetera--all of which seems to be wimpy attempts towards posing themselves as arch-narcissists. Above all they are believers in the concept that generation-X is the educated and intelligent generation.

There is nothing more to be observed about these people--unless one of them posts a favorite recipe or how to ride a skateboard.

BTW: in reference to Ms. Suart's article, the members of this S.I.N. website are now referring to Stuart as 'They"--meaning the imaginary controllers of a conspiratorial global society. They seem to believe that The Hook is a major news outlet to be quoted by the rest of the world and a leader of the big conspiracy (as I said: brainless people). They are also expecting the police to release pages of detailed findings--obviously they do not know Virginia.

agreed. this is piss-poor journalism at it's finest. nice compassion and sensitivity, courteney. you and your editors should feel really proud of yourselves.

@JD I won't even bother to point out your obvious lack of knowledge of what SIN is, and chalk it up to more baseless opinions coming from someone who's knowledge of the case stems from the fact you live in the area where the incident occurred. Such hypocrisy, and piss poor assumptions about internet web sites leads you to just smear more crap on what this garbage news outlet is slinging. At least have the intelligence to stick to facts and not opinions, you have none of the former and too much of the latter, and seem fixated on some kind of persecution complex on yourself.

Quite the representation of how people in Virginia are clueless as to how to report facts and news like real journalists should. They must hit people with the 'ignorant provincial idiot' stick a lot in those parts.

I know Noah is not a Satanist. He is a good friend of mine and yes he might doubt religions but he certainly isn't a Satanist. Knowing him he put up that account on the Satanist site as a joke or just plain boredom. He IS NOT a Satanist. Until there is clear edvidence stating that Noah was in mental distress I will not believe a word of this Bull****

It is hard to imagine that you would consider this something worth publishing. Whoever let you publish this must not care very much for you and your future. Perhaps they want to see you at the National Enquirer...
You remind me of a debt collector trying to collect debt during 9/11. Ask your 10 closest friends what they think of it and see if they can lie to you with a straight face.

Satan is very real, and this is just more evidence. Satanists only mean to hurt and destroy.

Show us the connection between Satanism and these deaths. You implied heavily. Now show us how and where this plays a role. I wanna see PROOF.

quoting Jeff D: They are also expecting the police to release pages of detailed findings--obviously they do not know Virginia.

If they do NOT do this, then they have violated constitutional law and mandate and as such are also violating the civil rights of the dead and living. if you condone this type of behavior, might I suggest you relocate to Bosnia, North Korea or other fascist controlled nation where things "just get done". Then you can tell us all about how things work in virginia.

The simple fact of the matter is this: no person knows, or will ever know what happened, since all 4 people are deceased. the only person knowing the reality of this situation is the killer, who may now be deceased if it was one of the 4 dead. Until a proper investigation has been completed, and reviewed, shut your beer hole and go watch some more football.

I agree with a few of these comments. This piece is Enquirer-like at best. Courtney can have good chops but as with any profession, individuals can lose themselves in what they do, lose sight of the big picture, and frankly, the real world. This is where a good Editor steps in to hold the presses/CMS. So Courtney is doing her job (sort of as she's lost her journalistic mind for a second here) but a sensationalist Editor is letting it go too far to sell another newspaper. Oh wait, it's free!

Jesus is Lord and whoever dabbles in Satanism is in very real danger, as is everyone around them! I'm not surprised he would get possessed and kill his family. The Enemy is very real and seeks to distroy us all. (1 Peter 5:8)

Anyone involved with Satanism needs to turn to Jesus NOW, he died a painful death on the cross for us all and without him you face eternal hell fire!

Geez Malvert, you seem so knowledgable about laws and other sexy stuff, Please turn me on some more by explaining what on earth this is supposed to mean and what you base it on: "If they do NOT do this, then they have violated constitutional law and mandate and as such are also violating the civil rights of the dead and living."

Wow, dude can't even spell serpent right but thinks he knows enough to tell the rest of us how to live.

b17, I'll pray for you. Hell is a horrible place and only those who except Jesus as their personal Load and Savior will escape it.

The Devil is real and uses his followers to cause misery death and pain and turn every one away from God. Satanists should be executed to protect everyone around them. One nation under God!

b17: the constitution of the United States declares all men innocent until proven guilty. If they do NOT present a clear and decisive proof that Noah did this, then any judgement rendered is an abortion of justice, and a travesty of our Unalienable Rights to fair trial, by jury, NOT by internet forum. If they railroad the guy in haste and declare without a reviewed preponderance of the evidence, then they have not done their job.

The Devil is real and uses his followers to cause misery death and pain and turn every one away from God. Satanists should be executed to protect everyone around them. One nation under God!

quoted from servent of god. What you have just done, and said is akin genocide. our constitution declares that no religious freedom will be usurped or forced on another. The sad thing is, MOST satanists Ive known in my life are more "christ like" that christians.

If you think anyone other than the devil is behind this, or this poor boys seduction into Satanism by sites like S.I.N. doesn't play a role here...you are stupid.

The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing us he doesn't exist. Even many of his servants know not whom they really serve.

@ serpent of Christ - Dude, slow down on the typing a bit and maybe try spell check. It's clear to me that you meant to write about people "who expect Jesus as their personal Load and Sailor" instead of "who except Jesus as their personal Load and Savior," but not everybody knows where that line comes from.

LOL, yes servant of christ, isn't that the eternal message of christianity?

Worship me or I'll torture you forever! -Your loving god.

"The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing us he doesn't exist. "

Funny, god pulled that same trick on me.

I just hope the extended family take this to heart and accept Jesus into their hearts and minds. This age of Satan nears its end.

It is completely and totally unfair and unethical to obtain information of someone based upon a personal blog of that person. Using a TUMBLR PHOTOBLOG is not only an non-credible source and should be against the very laws of journalism, but also does not in anyway reflect the attitude and persona of a human being who at this time deserves respect. As for the picture of the boy, you went snoopin' around his Facebook and found literally the worst picture you could of him in order to sell it that he is some satanist murder machine. Why don't you do a story about when a service will be held or find a way to celebrate the good they did instead of completely trashing two teenagers who can't even defend themselves.

Of course lets bring religious dispute into this tragedy because thats how we show respect in this country, by mocking up a horrific event as a show to all the fucktards in this world who want some entertainment. Yes Noah was a member of a Satanic social network, I never once heard him in all his time in chat talk of worshiping the devil. He would come in and hang out he always was the first one to lighten the mood. I remember Noah as a happy go lucky guy who loved to make people laugh. You could talk to him and he wouldn't make fun of anybody, i never heard him snap at anyone. This is how ill remember him and if he was the one who did this he wasnt in the right state of mind but no matter what happened, this is how ill continue to remember him.

Have you no shame or respect for the dead, to write such an article? It is gravely disappointing that the Hook seemingly finds it so easy to blame teenagers' actions on their supposed "angst" and "Satanism". I did not know Noah but Lily wasn't the brooding, angry person this makes her out as. She was an extraordinary, artistic individual who should not be judged by what she posted on an internet blog. Similarly, with support from everyone in the community, Noah Romando was not evil or satanic just because of his activity on a website. It is cruel to show him in such a negative light, especially with the deliberately chosen, incriminating photo of him smoking a cigar. Not all teenagers are hateful and full of angst like this portrays.

I'm sorry to hear of Noah's death. That being said, at least this situation proves one thing: Satan still sells headlines!

And here goes Courtney Stewart with her usual sensationalism. This is quite literally the most absurd piece I've read yet. How long will you continue to glorify this crap?

Come on folks. Of course not all teenagers are full of angst. The police apparently have reason to believe that this one was full enough of some sort of angst or anger to kill his family. People are naturally going to wonder what that was all about. Reporters try to answer those questions by sorting through the clues left behind. Dabbling in Satanism may not make people do dumb things, but in my experience its a symptom that something is up at least and it's a clue worth discussing. If that discussion offends anyone, well there are other things on the internet to read.

"Let's make a story out of scraps of the teenagers' internet life and the survivors' pain."

Bravo.

This place is thick with the Christianists today--a wonder what shaking the Satanist tree will do. The headline is the most misleading part here--the article mostly sticks to facts and does not necessarily push the notion that satanism was involved--but this is pretty weak journalism from an outlet that usually does much better.

People are struggling to figure out why this happened, and the police are releasing very little and may never release much--there is nobody to charge with a crime and no reason to believe further investigation would lead to criminal charges--just an empty place where speculation fills the gap. In this case, what may be baseless accusations(don't tell me the headline is not an accusation--the question mark does not fool anyone) are being trumped up by taking a scrap of a kid's life.

You could run a similar piece entitled "Did work at a grocery store lead to murder?" and have just as much credibility.

Do better.

If you believe in God(Christian) then you believe in Satan and then Satanists must believe in God.
Cops really have no reason to place the blame for the murders on anyone other than the one who did it.Somebody did the shooting and they are a murderer. If the report says it was Noah then f' him. I don't care how depressed or pissed he was. One of my best friends committed suicide and left 2 children and wife. I hate the act, sometimes I hate him. But he did not kill his family. He had a 30 year year history of fighting depression and managed to hide it from almost everyone. He had a family history of suicide. But he didn't kill his family. He damaged them to a point that most of us can't imagine. However they still have a chance. Noah's family does not.

This is way over the line. In addition, the fact that you are contacting both family members and friends of the deceased via Facebook is truly despicable.

When clients ask me to recommend advertising options, I will be sure to let them know how I feel about this paper. I will now block this site and never pick up another copy of The Hook.

You would think from some of these comments that the story was about " Axe stolen from local hardware store, could it be a killer on the loose?"  That would be sensationalism and trying to spin a normal, everyday event into a dark, evil story.  

But let me remind you, this WAS a horrific, dark, evil and sad event that actually happened in our community. The police are telling us who the suspect is. The community is asking "Why! How did he get there, what led up to this" as we mourn and try to understand how things got this bad. People like Mrs. Stuart are combing thru the limited  puzzle, looking for edge pieces. You all came here and read this because you are asking the same questions. If you want a soft, filtered, after the fact delivery, there is plenty of material out there. Barns and Noble might be a good place to start. Courteney is known for asking difficult questions, reporting story's no one else will touch, and working harder than most of us to bring understanding and justice to this community. 

Here is a superb example of the hypocrisy of journalists--and this is a systemic issue from managing editors on down...

When reporter Danny Pearl was beheaded in the Middle East, the brotherhood of journalists fell all over themselves to cover it as though it were a head of state killed. This is the journalists reveling in their supposed status as the "fifth estate" (when, really, they are more entertainers than anything nowadays).

I watched those news reports a lot, and I did not see one camera around the house of Pearl's family. Of course, if this were a victim of an urban shooting or even a young person struck by a train somewhere, the editor would have sent the reporters and cameras to the victim's home, to the parent's workplace, anywhere to get that bawling-on-camera shot.

Similarly, when athletes or entertainers get busted for DUI, it is in the news. If a newsperson gets nailed, nary a story. But when some old-flatus editor or publisher of a newspaper dies, it is a front-page story above the fold; as if, somehow, the general reading public cares that Schmucker X. Newhouse IV, former managing editor of "The Daily Regress," has died at his summer home on the water in Deltaville. Fact is, we really don't care; this just feeds the journalists' self-importance.

The narcissistic hypocrisy of today's jesters-in-media is well documented. So, kind readers, do not get so upset at the intrepid reporter's heartlessness; she really does think she is serving a public "need." (When, in fact, she is serving some of the public's "wants," just like Larry Flynt.)

R.I.P.: Bobby Astyr

The first paragraph or so is reporting, the rest, in large part, is speculation and amounts to stirring the pot. Absolutely shameful.

No human suffering is too great for this disgusting rag to exploit. This isn't journalism. The list of victims of The Hooks mean spirited tabloidism continues to grow. Publishing details of suicide, speculating on the cause of murders, and generally feasting on human misery for money, nothing is too low for these vultures to publicize.

He can't have been a very good Satanist if he killed himself -- LaVey's Satanism places primary importance on the self; killing one's self goes against the Satanic philosophy. Perhaps this tragedy was simply the result of a domestic dispute.

The only thing Ms. Stuart is trying to do is find possible answers that led up to this tragedy. Looking at the online activity of the suspect should be a given. Large corporations, schools, prospective employers and even friends use the Internet to get a better idea of a person's character. What we put out onto the public domain is just that, public. Instead of turning this into this into a lynch mob against a reporter, perhaps we can all learn something from this. Mr. Romando's online activity did not cause him to become a family annihilator but it could have been a warning sign, part of a larger picture. I can only suspect that if he just taken his own life, his family would be the ones dissecting his life to find the "why". From what those close to the suspect have commented on his personality, he was a sweet and genuine guy. The comments regarding all of the deceased mirror these comments. What happened did not come out of the blue. Something was brewing for a lot longer inside this young man. Something as a mother to a son myself, I would hope to catch long before it could unfold into a tragedy such as this.

It is a true shame when there is more emphasis based on what's found on a computer than the actual situation on hand. When it comes to some of these comments, I have to wonder just what happened to people and then I remember that, this IS people for the greater part.

Noah was a very lively, as it has been said above, user at SIN and connected with a lot of the users there. I am also an admin there since pretty much the beginning of the site and never has anything like this happened. While it was bound to be tracked due to the situation of the case, I find it disgusting that someone would put something out there that made these people sound like they were horrible people. 4 are dead and all we seem to have are conspiracy theorists on our hands.

Azazel said it best really.. Noah will be remembered the way the users there saw him; a happy kid with a future ahead of him that he now, no longer has.

It appears the kids endured huge family problems. Clues- Isn't Murray high school set up for kids who can't function in a traditional environment?, Too much time spent on controversial Internet sites, A broken home, etc.
In reading this piece: No surprise to me somebody snapped. It was only a matter of time.

Liberalace, anyone complaining about the "hypocrisy of journalists" and that "they are more entertainers than anything nowadays" needs only to look in a mirror for the source of that problem. Today's media serves up what the public wants, and the profit-driven capitalist framework of our economy exacerbates the problem. It's hardly the case that journalists sat around and decided they'd rather report on celebrities and sensationalize everything; they're just doing what their CEO masters, with an eye on the bottom line, are ordering them to do, and that's all because people won't tune in or read if there's not something salacious. Listen to the BBC and NPR if you want to hear the difference. We're all just reaping what we sowed when we decided that the pursuit of private profit is the highest good.

Lily Romando’s interpreted ‘angst’ is of no real importance here. She was a lovely young artist, full of joy and life. A more detailed examination of her posts would lead one to believe that she was a lover of life, rather than some tragic child courting her own death. As far as Noah being on SIM, well that is something that anyone would raise an eyebrow to, especially since he was, according to most, a wonderful young man. Something happened. What? Most people are reading the article because they are curious. Rather simply, Satanism, isn’t interpreted by most as warm and fuzzy, light and life kinda stuff. Sorry SIM fans, I’m not interested in the fact that “good Satanists don’t kill themselves” and whatnot, I’m not really convinced there are ‘Good Satanists’ to begin with. I don’t know if Noah was or not. I subscribe to ultra right wing and ultra left wing message boards and email lists because I’m curious what the fringe is up to on both sides. My curiosity doesn’t make me a follower of either ilk. I’ll accept that the fact that a young man, who is the alleged killer of an entire family, and was a participant on a satanic message board warrants some investigation, it alone isn’t the smoking gun.
Leave the father alone if this is what you want to talk to him about right now. My friend has the daunting task of examining the house and retrieving the children’s belongings tomorrow, and to make sure it is cleaned up enough for the father to enter. Curiosity doesn’t outweigh civility for most people when they know someone involved in a tragedy. News is news, and in this town, this is big news. While I understand the desire to find out more, NOW!, in reality it may take some time. I won’t fault you for doing your job and investigating a story you’ve been assigned. Just as doctors often get emotionally detached from their patients, reporters often do the same, and need to do the same or they’d never get anything accomplished. I encourage a balance and hope you can help shed some light on this tragedy in due time while remembering that there are many pained souls and people affected by this tragedy.

I am the owner/creator of Satanic International Network. I knew Noah. I would not say we were friends but I did speak to Noah in my chat room many times. He always seemed in good spirits. He never showed any signs of being mentally unstable. He never spoke of wanting to kill himself or anyone else.His interest in Satanism has nothing to do with the tragic events that unfolded. Nor does it have anything to do with my network.My network is not responsible for his alleged actions. I run a social network that has nearly 4000 users. I am not responsible for the actions of the users. Noah was also on facebook. So is facebook responsible for the actions of their users?

IM NOT A MEMBER OF SIN....BUT PLEASE DON'T CLASSIFY ALL MEMBERS OF S.I.N. AS ONE, THIS KID NOAH OBVIOUSLY HAD PROBLEMS, IT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH S.I.N. MEMBERS PERSONAL LIVES. HE TOOK IT UPON HIMSELF TO DO THIS. IT WAS HIS CHOICE. ALTHOUGH, I FEEL FOR THE FAMILY OF THE ROMANDOS, NOAH WAS OBVIOUSLY UNSTABLE. S.I.N. IS A SOCIAL NETWORK IN WHICH ALLOWS YOU TO SEE OTHER PEOPLES RELIGIOUS VIEWS AND SEE THE DIFFERENCES OF THE WORLD. AFTER ALL.... WE ARE ALL UNIQUE ARENT WE? WE HAVE NO CLONES. LOOK AT PEOPLE ON FACEBOOK...... THERES BEEN ALL KINDS OF CRIMINAL ACTS FROM PEOPLE USING THAT NETWORK, DOES IT MEAN FACEBOOK IS WHAT LED TO IT? I DONT THINK SO..... THINK BEFORE YOU SPEAK. @JEFF D.

@ Zach has anyone accused you or your organization of being responsible for this tragedy ?
You say, " I knew Noah. I would not say we were friends but I did speak to Noah in my chat room many times."
Chat rooms as a way of " knowing " a person have limitations , but that said, even family members may not have seen this coming. Normally looking back there were signs and for those of us uninitiated in organizations with
Satan in the title that would be worth pursuing . It is a journalists job
to pursue all leads.

Carlii. What's with the all caps? Make your point without internet shouting, It's harder to read and people will think less of your arguement. I agree with some of what you say, but in all caps it looks like you're a kid yelling nonsense. Come on.

Something this story is missing is FACTS!!! Just because Lily and Noah had some dark pictures and one was a part of an online group means NOTHING!!!!!!!!! Not everyone believes in the same religion or the same God!!! I don't know of any young kid who doesn't like grusome pictures. They also like killer movies, so I guess anyone who has watched one is doomed to become a murderer?? When tragedies like this happen it is horrible. When you add your crap to it, it makes it so much worse!! One of the reasons I hate The Hook. I only came on here to read the trash story I heard so many others speak of!!

I love The Hook because the real story comes forth. Sometimes hearing the truth hurts. The kids had problems and no one successfully intervened. Parents, read this story and don't allow your own kids to go down the same dark path!

Cut the crap, all of you who are saying this is bad journalism, or irrelevant information, or whatever other lame criticism you are trying to hurl. These types of details are the exact same bits and pieces Norman Mailer, Joe McGinnis, or Truman Capote would round up and include in their highly acclaimed best-selling nonfiction books--timeless classics regarded as among the finest pieces of investigative journalism of the 20th century. The time stamps on the Facebook entries are accurate. I found them on Noah's (public) Facebook page the night after the murders and sent the link along to Courtney in case she had not already discovered it. It is inherently interesting that Noah was bantering happily with his friends a mere three hours before he killed his mother, teenage sister, and middle school brother. Forensic psychologists and profilers at UVa and at Quantico would also take this information very seriously as they try to understand what causes teenagers to snap, and how we can prevent it. This tragedy is beyond comprehension for the moment: Three people spent their last moments alive in abject terror, and one person spent his last moments alive enraged, psychotic, or both. For anyone questioning whether the police are sure Noah was the shooter, keep in mind that any law enforcement officer could walk onto that scene and notice where the gun was and see the angle of the entrance wound and immediatey determine it was suicide. The mystery here is not who did it, but why, and how we can prevent this kind of violence through outreach and education. Courteney Stuart is an outstanding reporter, diligent and ethical. I have often remarked that we are fortunate she has been with the Hook for so many years, providing first-rate coverage that is rare in a small city like ours. I'd hate to lose her to a larger market. Same goes for the Hook's Lisa Provence, whose reporting and writing are also first class.

This article is absolutely sickening. It is embarrassing that The Hook would even consider publishing something like this. I have never seen an author so tactless, you should be ashamed. You know nothing about the Romandos.

@Amy Lemley - To Lisa's credit, she did say that the investigation was ongoing. However, this is the same kind of crap that we see over and over and over again. For example, Columbine: IT'S THE VIOLENT VIDEO GAMES AND MARILYN MANSON'S FAULT! Again, show me a post on Satanic International Network that showed ANY relevence to this tragedy. If you or Lisa can't do that, then stop speculating and stick to the facts (that which is called "reporting"!)

....and by Lisa, I meant Courteney Stuart. Sorry about the mix up.

The report is accurate. You may not accept. There is dysfunction, family dynamics and to the core.
Too late for recovery in this case. Wake up.

@Amy...Are you really trying to compare her to Truman Capote? How much time did he spends finding out the truth before he published. That is a joke!

@Hook...Thanks for changing the name of the article.

@ Darkf00l that was the point of the original article, to make a link between Satanism and whether or not it had a role in Noah's motivation as the accused killer. People that knew him are already saying there weren't any indicators of anything that would suggest that. This blogger links our site to the article then inserts some google bullshit about Anton LaVey's writings, having no knowledge or understanding of the accused's involvement with SIN, she merely stumbled upon our site, took it at face value, and decided to dickride us to get some stupid scoop, then edit the article 'as it develops'. Tell me that isn't the tackiest form of shit reporting you've seen?

Deleted by moderator.

Actually Dale, no one condones such actions.. not personally nor on SatanicInternationalNetwork.. but nice try in making it sound like we are glorifying it. We were all surprised and taken aback that Ahh incident occurred and no one was too surprised when some junk media got ahold of his SIN account. All people do is look for the story. Just happened to get lucky this time and find something a bit more against the grain than normal.

I try to keep my personal stuff to myself and even if I didn't .. what is it to you what some stranger you've never met did? Want to know what doesn't mean anything? Anything you or I or anyone else has to say about this matter. Push comes to shove the only people that matter in this case are the people involved.

Yes because what we do had anything to do with what has happened here. I am a grown woman and take care of myself and all my stuff in an adult manner instead of going on like a child and bad mouthing people that I don't even know. Last time I checked, you were not the master of anyone's life but your own. Perhaps you should take a break from the keyboard riding, breathe a little and come back when you aren't so emotionally invested in other peoples lives and choices.

thats funney darkf001! you got it! grow up

i did not bad mouth anybody if you are refering to me.

i am not the master\

I feel that Facebook has just as much to do with this incident as Satanism does, nothing. It's funny how Christians always come out of the woodwork when the name Satan is dropped. The brainless don't visit Satanic sites, they go to church like all the other sheeple

Wow. This one is pretty low. But I guess she needed some type of headline to grab Nancy Grace's attention again.

sonofject---Take a chill pill. It does not look good to defend yourself repeatedly when no one has accused you of anything.

It did make me laugh quite a lot when I read your messages posted here. Perhaps you believe they will impress people in Virginia--who you indicate are incapable of reaching your own high level of intellect. It doesn't impress New Yorkers.

My entire description of the S.I.N. members came from reading what they themselves posted on your site-- I haven't seen any news reports regarding the site's members.

To others: There is nothing in US Constitutional law requiring local police to publish case facts. A deceased suspect has no rights, only living persons have rights.

Meanwhile: The police continue to dole out micro-amounts of information and thus cause everyone to speculate--thus creating controversy.

I wonder if anyone could find any sort of factual links between the shooting in Stony Point, the shooting in New Jersey earlier today, the shooting at the Empire State Building, the shooting at the Family Research council last week, the shooting at the Sikh Temple, and the shooting in Aurora last month?

Oh, wait. The answer is in the question. They were all shootings.

I guess this proves that unless more people have guns, only criminals will have guns. Or, wait, if more people had a gun, there would be fewer shootings. Wait a minute.... The argument is that if there were fewer guns, more guns would be necessary to protect the gunless from those with guns! There, I think I nailed it.

It's also interesting that the biggest advocates for gun control are public servants responsible for public safety in areas with the highest levels of gun violence, but what do they know?

I knew Lily, and this article just made things so much worse for me. I don't understand why it would focus on the "angsty" part of her life when there is so much joy to be found in other parts. I don't understand why it would even include that portion before it went on to talk about how other people thought she was happy. I knew Lily for over 2 years, and I don't think there was a day that I saw her that I didn't also see her smiling and laughing, often at herself.
I didn't know Noah, but it seems like everyone who knew him thought of him as a nice guy. We will probably never know what happened on that night, or why, but I feel that it is unfair to paint their family as some group of depressed people, which is how I read this article.
I know that it is the job of a reporter to share the facts, but this article distorts the facts by focusing on the parts of Lily's life that were "angsty" and Noah's involvement in a website that he had not been on in over a MONTH, and then distort his friend's (not even his own) recent post into something about literal guns when it was obviously talking about muscles.
I don't see how our community is supposed to be able to come together for support when articles like this tear at our love for these people.

At our website, our rules are guidelines on how to 'test people' that navigate our topic forms and discussion in a social setting. It is not generally known as a 'hugbox' or sanctuary for angst ridden or religiously fraught people. In fact, we have a process of social stratification that raises the content level of our site consistently, and a policy of keeping it real when it comes to posting and commenting. Mods and admin do their fair share of keeping the dross away from cluttering our main page, but with a site that has thousands of users, something like this incident was bound to happen.

I agree with some of the comments here, this article is really unacceptable and unfit to be called 'news'. No matter how many times you edit it, your intent was shown initially to sensationalize a tragedy with the blame game. That's all.

I didn't open this can of worms, the article did. Not my fault you didn't expect a proper response to linking a website community without even asking or addressing anyone from that site. Honestly, what reaction did you expect?

Last comment on the matter, my piece has been said here.

Stick to covering entertainment, Courteney. You tried to reach dad via facebook? Shameful. Leave these people to grieve. We will know what's happening when people have gotten over the devastation. I'm sure you would want the same.

I am a Luciferian, one of the reasons why I prefer Luciferians keep a distance from Satanists is the negative publicity like this. Satanists do themselves no favours in how they approach their philosophy, they attract idiots, nutjobs and criminals.

@ sonofject
I am also well aware of SIN as you know, and as admin you should be aware that your site attracts many impressionable young minds. The play acting that SIN admins and others indulge in around guns, gangsterism and telling people to "go kill themselves" looks to have been taken to heart by one of your recently deceased members. What you sow you reap.

Watching satanist argue makes me think that this line of investigation into the horrific murders is something that should be looked at.

Mabuz, get some class dude. Are you really using this families tragedy as a springboard to air your moldy old sour grapes? You have revealed fully your character here.

Noah was a nice kid, given the right circumstances anyone is capable of things that others might find horrifying or not understand. Perhaps instead of wildly speculating and gossip mongering, we should just wait for the details..or better yet..mind our own business.

DD

How about if all of you who want to discuss the various Satan-related sites take the conversation off this board. And meanwhile, if you have comments about Noah's experiences and the impression he made on you while on the site he frequented, you share those. If you want to say the article unfairly mentioned SIN, I believe that is relevant. I realize I am not here as the arbiter of anything. What I am trying to do is suggest that we keep this discussion on topic. I am curious what you consider this type of discussion thread to be. My own opinion is that it serves the communityies affected by this story (and that includes the SIN and Satanist communities) as a forum for discussing the tragedy itself, the Hook's coverage of the tragedy, and the social issues that relate to it. Within my framework, there is plenty of room for "how dare you" and well done," as well as "let me clarify what SIN is" or "what 'pistols' are" (in fact, the article did not imply Noah meant actual pistols, and I think almost everyone would understand that "showing the pistols" in this context obviously meant showing the "guns" or arm muscles. I know the Hook is preparing a more deeply investigative article for print--and I maintain that there are no inaccuracies in this piece and personally believe in the public's right to know as much as we can as quickly as we can. The article presents the facts of what happened; the closest it comes to editorializing is "suggests he may have had a dark side." Suggests...may have... It quotes Noah's fervent position as someone who abhors judgment of others' religions or skin color. And it also quotes his identifying his gender as "beast." That is fair and balanced reporting. Sorry, but most of us would agree that identifying your gender as "beast" seems dark. Taking a stand against judgmental people, not so much; on the contrary, those are the words of a kind, thoughtful, enlightened person. We need this kind of balance as we begin to understand this murder and the murderer's suicide. And we are getting that balance through Courteney Stuart's reporting, which is thorough, professional, and ongoing. Should information come out that contradicts what she believed were facts when she reported them, she will not hesitate--indeed she will rush--to correct those errors.

In response to >>It is completely and totally unfair and unethical to obtain information of someone based upon a personal blog of that person. Using a TUMBLR PHOTOBLOG is not only an non-credible source and should be against the very laws of journalism, but also does not in anyway reflect the attitude and persona of a human being who at this time deserves respect. As for the picture of the boy, you went snoopin' around his Facebook and found literally the worst picture you could of him in order to sell it that he is some satanist murder machine. Why don't you do a story about when a service will be held or find a way to celebrate the good they did instead of completely trashing two teenagers who can't even defend themselves.<<

There is no completely trashing anybody going on here; what was reported that wasn't true? Facebook, Tumblr, and chatroom activities are public, unless the privacy setting prevent public access. These are not quotations from private diaries the reporter found in these people's bedrooms, or in their household trash out on the street (which is actually, legally, an accepted place to obtain information from, whether you're a reporter or not). When I read about what happened, the social media sites are the first places I went to try to comprehend what happened. No intelligent person considers this information to be definitive--and that includes the reporter. But it is relevant. Sorry. But it is.

And by the way, I am not sure why anyone would think that wasn't an attractive, professional-looking black-and-white photographic portrait of Noah. When I saw it the first time, I wondered if it was his sister's work. Lily was an extraordinarily gifted photographer--professional-caliber even at age 17. I found that out through my own Internet research the night after this happened. What a talent, and what a tragedy.

"Chat rooms as a way of " knowing " a person have limitations , but that said, even family members may not have seen this coming. Normally looking back there were signs and for those of us uninitiated in organizations with
Satan in the title that would be worth pursuing . It is a journalists job
to pursue all leads."
the average SIN chat user spends about 3-4 HOURS a day, almost daily in chat, often with their webcam on the entire time. In this particular community, this is generally the RULE as it were. That kind of open exposure, gives you a VERY good look into the daily lives of its users. Even when a parent, spouse or friend comes in for a discussion, asks the chatter a question or whatever, the cam usually remains on. You'd be surprised what you can learn about people in this context. S.I.N. members are typically pretty open about their lives, and hold very little back from view, kinda plays into the stratification aspect.

@ Mabuz- Take you butthurt somewhere else. You know as well as I do that my network Satanic International Network had nothing what so ever to do with this tragic event. Noah obviously had mental issues. You are trying to fan the flames. This is not the right place to take pot shots at me or my network. Have a little respect you coward.

Amy Lemley, you sound like you might be Courtney's friend, but maybe not. At any rate, you seem really defensive of both her and the style of coverage that the Hook is presenting here. I would take issue with your understanding of journalism and journalistic ethics, though. You wrote, "I personally believe in the public's right to know as much as we can as quickly as we can." There is a right to know, of course--but you tack on "as much as we can as quickly as we can," and that's overreaching. The idea of a "right to know" has devolved into a "want to know," in which public greed for salacious details has overwhelmed any idea of responsible journalistic behavior. There are limits to our "right to know," as there are to all our other rights. We have a right to know that a murder-suicide took place, and the names of the deceased (but not "as quickly as we can"), but I would say that we have no right to know what the suicide note said, for example. We might WANT to know, because we love sensational details (it's like popcorn for the mind), but wanting isn't the same as needing, and the right to know has limits.

You write that "the article presents the facts of what happened; the closest it comes to editorializing is 'suggests he may have had a dark side.' Suggests...may have... It quotes Noah's fervent position as someone who abhors judgment of others' religions or skin color. And it also quotes his identifying his gender as 'beast.' That is fair and balanced reporting." Here, too, you seem really, really mistaken. While it might be true that these are all "facts," just presenting certain facts does not equal "balanced" reporting. Balance implies giving equal weight to all sides so that, you know, things balance out. There's nothing in Stuart's article that balances out the extremely negative picture of Noah Romando that is painted in the first few paragraphs. That's kind of the definition of "unbalanced."

I think we get that you really like stories like this one (and you even do your own "research" on dead people you don't know, which is an elevated way of saying "I snooped on a dead stranger's FB page!"). You enjoy consuming these bits of information. They're like super-tasty potato chips and you don't want to stop at just one. But journalism, real journalism, adheres to higher standards than this.

I agree with Mabuzz. The SIN form is a site of cyberbillies. I was a member there and for monthes the just bullied me, Mabuzz, and even Venus Satanis. I felt so bad I almost cried and I felt like committing suicide. I have spoken to dozens of ex-user from that form who have been bullied. I really suggest the authorities serious look deeper at this. They are just jealous of Mabuzz because he has a suckesful blog with thousands of followers.

It's quite disturbing to see how the the blogger of this article has consistently censored comments addressing the detractors of the SIN site, Admins and mods have come on here to clarify to other posters that are capitalizing on Noah's tragedy, and our comments have been deleted. Yet the other comments are left up to further sensationalize and 'speculate'. This just shows censorship to spin the facts.

I have lost all respect for this news outlet. You talk about journalistic integrity, real fact checking, respect for the surviving family and friends, then in the same breath say that that the Hook is isn't relevant in the world of online 'news' outlets. Arbitrary hypocrisy. It all goes back to linking our site without asking. The Hook lacks any ethical boundaries, and will continue to fan the flames of misinformation.

Sonofjack is one of the bullies at SIN who cyberbullied me. They are just trying to covrr their tracks. After Noah did this they say nice things about him. You should have seen how they were treatying him when he was a user there. Somebody has to be held accountable fro there cyberbullying!

My friend Ipsissimus Venger Satanis, founder of the Cult of Cthulhu and Messiah of Satanism can tell you all about their cyberbullying. Please visit his site @ cultofcthulhu(dot)wall(dot)fm.

To not see that the comment above Ject's is a clear and blatant cry for attention is sad. What's even worse, in the attempt of the Admins/Owner of the site trying to clarify SIN and it's standards, we've managed to lose the actual point behind the entire article. The loss of some obviously valued people.

To those who have left SIN on their own accord, I am truly disgusted and unimpressed that you would come to something like that and start pushing out unrelated nonsense to the topic at hand. Including you, Mabon.

When it comes to searching out the website and the users.. I say, go ahead. You will not find anything other than what we experienced with Noah. He was happy and not even really very active in the forums. He liked to chat and share things with other people. Our chat provides an often humorous and friendly area to get to know people you might not get a chance to do normally. Most of these people I wouldn't ever doubt coming around and traveling with and some do so themselves. They're quite easily some of the first people I would go to in times of trouble or to de-stress. When it comes to the "beast" area.. when a user makes a profile account they are giving an option between a good amount of things they could choose as their sex ranging from "beast" to even "male/female". I do not think that his choice shows any kind of "dark side" but everyone has an opinion and are well to do to keep it to themselves. Unfortunately, this rarely happens.

Push comes to shove.. we have explained SIN far more than we ever needed to and express our heartfelt (yes us Satanists/Chaoists/Luciferians have those) sympathies and regards to the families and friends that have to mourn these great losses in their lives. May they find peace with it and be able to move forward in their lives.

@Slybaby Demoniacle - The people at SIN can be very harsh at times. 1) This is the Left-Hand Path we're dealing with here, and 2) that If you can't take the heat, then GET OUT IF THE KITCHEN! (which you did, by leaving SIN). Personally, I am SO sick if hearing about victims, Martyrs, and bullies/bullying/cyberbullying. You know how you deal with a bully? You knock their teeth out and give them something to think about. Even LaVeyan Satanism acknowledges that! When I was the cohost of blogtalkradio's "The Ooze". We had a show about that. Shameless plug, but it's relevant to the topic at hand. DEAL WITH IT.

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/theooze/2011/01/01/discussion-edition--nail...

The last note I would like to leave here is on responsibility. If the authorities find that SIN was somehow relevant to Noah's tragedy, then please spit it out! If not, then stop these empty accusations! How many times are we going to hear that websites, rock bands, literature, etc. are the causes of these tragedies before realizing that the problems go much much deeper than that?! Think about it.

Oh Slybaby, you're so precious. C'mon, learn some gooder english and maybe folks will take you seriously here. You're helping this article so much in all the right ways.

I'm pretty sure slybaby is a troll trying to stir the pot some more.

I know I am not the only user at DIN to be cyberbullied. There are many others. If they bullied me and I felt like crying and became suicidal, then would others they have bullied not fell the same? They will continue to mistreat peple because they feel safe behind their computrrs. . I'm just saying that the authorities should look fir a cause for what made Noah to end up doing this. And it could be because hey bullied him at SIN, just ike did with Mabuzz and many others.

I have to re point out what Darkf00l posted.

"Responsibility to the responsible"

Why are you trying to make it into everyone else's fault? If you were so weak that you couldn't handle someone and stand up for yourself; that is on you. No one else. How disrespectful? I didn't appreciate the article but what's worse are people coming on here and making it all about them! This is not your claim to fame. As far as I know, Noah wasn't bullied and he was well liked.

Obvious troll is obvious. Return to where you came from. You offer no help to any side's case.

One unique feature of SIN, in the forums, is that we always let flaming and topic wars play itself out for the world to see. We don't delete ANYTHING. This is a golden rule for the users and the mods/admin. We have a forum called 'fight club', where users can duke it out on the keyboard, no censorship whatsoever. Most people that quit SIN don't understand this dynamic. The policy has always been 'make 'em quit before they get fired', and it's worked for us time and again.

See this is how the admins stary with the bullying. They call you a troll and then their friends play this cybrr game where they try to bully you off their site.

If I had a dime for every ime I was ridickuled at SIN id have about $4.20. mabon would have $100.00 and the obese chick Venus Satanas would have like $5.00. Please stop them Hook.

Hmm...interesting. It's not very logical to make up allegations when someone who has left the site has no proof of what they claim. I'm sure anyone can peruse our forums and see that our 'cybergames' are a way of metaphorically 'taking your lunch money'. It's quite jocular and fun to let out your anger in writing. For those well versed in writing, those topics have none of the negativity associated with bullying. People read into things wayyyy too much.

When a user decides to quit SIN (remove their account), all the things they posted leave with them. When they are suspended, their posts are left up for people to read so you can discern what kind of participation led to their suspension. It's not hard for us to debunk false claims when we have that kind of transparency. Sly over here keeps trying to use this article to capitalize on publicity. Kinda rings the same as what the blogger of this article's intent was from the getgo.

Wow. Really relevant to topic. Meltdown in 3...2..1

Some of our Admins are female.

This is whay happends when liberals have kids such ss the type on SIN. I urge the pepole of Hook to vote Republican this November. We illegalize abortion, devil worship, and heavy metal. This will help save pur children.

Speaking of standards ~
What kind of standards does SIN have? Well, to start with, their owner is an alcoholic. You can witness drinking contests at their live chat, along with drug use. The owner of the site ["Zach Black"] made a series of videos where he described how depressed and sad that he was.. then he made a suicide video..his ''friends'' at the time saw that video where he was so drugged up and telling people that he just wanted to die... well, they called the police because no one had heard from him since then, and they found him in his bathtub where he lived at the time, drugged up and dying. The police put him in the drunk tank for several days.

With an emotionally unstable [and alchoholic] "leader" such as this, its no wonder that something like this tragedy happened. After all, water seeks its level. The SIN site was created after Zach regained his composure. After his online suicide attempt, people felt sorry for him. I think that its not hard to see why mentally unstable people populate that site, along with cyberbullies and rejects of the Church of Satan. They want to commiserate with each other, and spread gossip and lies about other people as if it were high school all over again.

It is truly a shame that this site and it's reputation [and the reputation of the owner as well] leaves much to be desired, and not only that, they have lowered the standard for ALL satanists by setting such a poor example for others. After all, what have they brought to the table in the two years that they have existed? Nothing that will really be remembered as useful to others in Satanism.

While this murder-suicide may not have been their fault, and while no one could have seen this coming, its no surprise that mentally unstable people who are seeking friendship will gravitate to the places on the net that make them feel comfortable and welcome. Its a great example of stratification in effect, don't you agree?.

Yes this is what is known as YELLOW JOURNALISM - it sells! but the real test will be when the police do their investigation into this person's life, and those that influenced him in his circle of friends.

The owner Zach Black also made a youtube video about doing 30 hits of acid. His ex girlfriend says on FB that he is allegedly phichotic and allegefly physically abusive. He has a blog talking about it. They were laughing about this. I thinl thing go deeper between Naoh and SIN. What drove him to such extreme actions? I think the surbiving family should look into this connection further.

What is sad here is that people cannot get over themselves for a time to get to the heart of it(and NO SIN is the the heart of it.)There are 4 dead people for no reason.How about you let others mourn the loss of loved ones instead of trying to stick it to someone you have a problem with. To the other side, why defend yourself against trolls and people begging for attention? This should be about those who lost their life and nothing else, not who hurt who.

There are four dead pepole. What was Noahs Motive? what influenced him and his motives? I think SIN is open to investigation to see if it did have an influence on him.

OK, but not by you sly that is my point.You are just throwing out accusations because you are(in your own words) a victim of bullying tactics by SIN. I am not saying all things should not be questioned I am saying let it rest and let some people mourn. Nothing more nothing less.

If Manson can be put into prison for influencing those murdrrers, then SIN and its admins must be subject to the same law.

People's social lives on SIN vary to each individual. Attacking the site owner's character and other staff is yet more misinterpretations of what the site is about. I'm crapping myself laughing at fools that say "Oh they don't represent Satanism correctly", like they themselves are some authority on the subject.

This is what I like about detractors, the blatant exposing of people's lives that has little to nothing to do with Satanism. In their attempts to try to establish some sort of personal liability or malice aforethought to other users, it becomes more and more apparent that Satanism did not play a role. The mentally fragile and unstable always paint a victim complex that detracts from the factual investigation and adds bias. Typical persecution complex.

No one's hiding anything. The site owner has hundreds of youtube videos that talk about everyday life. Perhaps you should watch his video on 'keeping it real'. Nice cherrypicking of videos to buttress a weak argument. I don't see how a person's character is a grounds for coming up with absurd conclusions.

Just keep burying yourselves trying to grasp at straws. We'll always be around to back our stuff up. I covet stratification. It's a true pragmatic discernment.

@Slybaby: Manson, is that your best reply? Manson was the leader of the group that followed his every word and most likely told the others what to do, planned it out ect. SIN is a social network not a gang,Church or an organization so your point fails.

Neither SIN or the admins there should have to take any responsibility in this. Yes, it is true that people tend to gravitate towards they feel as their own, doesn't make us all killers. Airing the site owners personal business also shows that you have no idea what you are talking about past the surface of what you find online. This is including the statements from the exgirlfriend.

Again, if they feel the need to go further into it with the network, then both the owner and the admin team will be more than hospitable until they et what they need. We have nothing to hide and someone's personal weakness should not be used as an example as to why the site may have had any connection with this situation.

The incident with Noah clearly points to a domestic, isolated circumstance. As he is the killer the ultimate responsibility was and remains his. Most people on SIN had a tertiary understanding of Noah's character. All of the online 'character witnesses' have stated over and over that there weren't any indicators that he was angry, depressed, or even suicidal. He posted nothing on SIN that would indicate this either (he frequented the chatroom).

Muckraking at its finest on here.

I thought the Morgan Harrison case drew some dumb comments, but this really takes the cake! The self-styled "satanists" who have been posting here seem like a bunch of whiney 14 year olds and demonstrate the polar opposite of their alleged "I don't care what anyone thinks of me attitude." If "satanism" can be anything anyone wants it to be, maybe the author is just doing her satanic thing to write whatever she pleases and couldn't give a rats ass about who it offends. I'd think a legitimate satanist would approve. Guess we're dealing with a bunch of satanoposeurs then. The Prophet Lavey would be disgusted.

Thank you b17. I'm a legitimate satanist and I agree with you. Those SIN users are Church of Satan rejects. The Cult of Cthulhu is a better example of what legit satanism is.

Am I the only person here that noticed Sly became suddenly literate with good spelling? Trololololololol........

Most be fun talking and responding to yourself Sly LOOOOOOL!!!!

*must

Funny how you misspelled a word there Sonofjack. I love the way you and your fellow admins over at SIN are here all together trying to deflect responsibility.

I also love the typical behaviour of SIN claiming Noah8 was a fellow Satanist then, but now some of you are doing the predictable by disowning him, stating that he is not a Satanist for certain reasons.

Nope. Just clarifying what you're continually slandering. Pretty obvious you're just dickriding for attention, plugging the CoC(k) as you always do.

No where are they "disowning" him Sly(where do you see that?) If you say Satanism is an individual path then what Noah did was on him AS an individual not done as a collective. I am no Satanist but I can clearly see this point of it.

accept that it is typical behavior for Satanists to disown one of their own when they 1) commit a crime 2) commit suicide .. That's just the way it is. After all, they have a ''reputation'' to maintain. The Church of Satan would do the very same thing if they were involved in a similar situation.

And for a site that claims to promote independent thought, variety and individualism, yet there is nothing but mob mentality and herd behavior. You can witness it in action here on this page, right before your very eyes.

Would you idiots just shut up about your stupid websites. Lives have been taken and people couldn't careless about what you have to say about your Satan worshipping crap! Get out of your pajamas and quit hiding behind your computers and enjoy life! It's too short to be debating over something so petty! A woman did her job and is being criticized. Cool. We're all lucky to be breathing this very second. We all get to wake up tomorrow and welcome a new day. I think you're all pathetic. I can't believe I just wasted 10 minutes of my life reading this never ending argument.

Bry22: Thx, I said that in an earlier post and soon forgot, sorry you are right, lives are gone and that should be the main focus not the other crap being spilled(by me or another.)

Oh Sly, really? Comparing the Church of satan to jesus? What would jesus do? He certainly wouldn't accept something forced upon him, would he? Oh wait, he was persecuted and killed by his own people. Was he responsible for his death? No. Suicide is taking you own life. You'll never know the real motivation for the act because the person that committed it is dead.

Pretty shameful of you, Sly, to keep bringing up the deceased to make your point. You're just making things more painful for the surviving family. You should be so proud of your blatant disrespect.

@ Tim stop feeding the troll ;) We all know it's one person talking to themselves.

Stoneypoint is ignorant. Ms. Stuart did not ask the hard questions, she cherry picked information and drew her own conclusions. This is journalism at its worst. Yes people in our town want answers, but there isn't a deadline for the answers and allowing Peter, the father time to grieve, say goodbye and bury his children is common decency, of which Ms. Stuart apparently has none. My son went to school with All the kids. If he saw this he'd be OUTRAGED! She has a responsibility to report FACTS, and leave her conclusions out of it, which she did not.

@SoJ: AHHHH, why do you get to feed him and I ;P

Should be "and not I"

And to Amy Lemley, not once in her articles did she explore mental illness. She presented a bare minimum of facts written with her own slant. Poor journalism indeed...

Not only would the prophet Lavey be disgusted, I think Satan himself would be disappointed with the quality of his self styled followers if this discussion is any indication of who they are.

I'm not even going to try to address half of the insane comments on this by the people that don't like SIN.

Let me just summarize a few points:

What happened with Noah has nothing to do with satanism, or any online network devoted to satanism. The original point of the SIN admin/users posting here was to make known Noah's personality and interactions as we saw it on SIN. Happy kid, everyone liked him etc, etc. Obviously, no one at SIN is responsible for what happened. This thread should not be an argument over which satanic network is the best, who the "real" satanists are, or about convincing the general public which satanic site is the "nice" one. (Hello, choosing satan or lucifer as an identifier is NOT going to go down well with a predominately religious society. Kind of the point.) The site's not going to get shut down, and I don't care if some random people don't like SIN or satanism in general. Ya'll can keep arguing about stupid BS if you want, but it's really not going to do anything.

Oh, and as a spoiler alert before the police release any more information: No one's ever going to figure out why this happened. All anyone can really know is that random acts of violence are just a part of the human condition. Unfortunate, but there it is.

The journalists behind this blog would be wise to leave what has been posted here uncensored, as the SIN admins and members who have posted here express the sort of cyberbullying, immature and pack mentality that the deceased would have been familiar with on SIN. Nobody needs to look at SIN now to find their answers about what SIN is like, it is all here for the seeing on this blog.

As to SIN admins, you are a walking media disaster. The SIN handling of this tragedy since day one has been insensitive, egotistical and unprofessional.

@Sly - Quote OrgasmicKarmatic : "I didn't appreciate the article but what's worse are people coming on here and making it all about them! This is not your claim to fame."

She's right, this article isn't about you or the CoC.

I interacted with Noah on many occasions on line and found him to be best described as a big, goofy, likable kid. I would have probably found him someone that I would have hung out with in high school, and at my age, would have a hard time finding fault with him as a grandson, based on anything he ever posted at SIN. Make no mistake, this is a tragedy of the first order and has resulted in several deaths. From everything that Noah spoke to me about in the chats, Satanism would have played no part in the tragedy. We (any of us) know nothing about his interactions with his family off line. There could well have been stressors that none of us could know or comprehend how impactful they could be on his psyche. Yet still there was "something," and that something led to a tragedy.

Beyond that, I think another tragedy is in the willful and manipulative way that people on the web, and even in the news seek to use this tragedy to make themselves look good... or advance their agendas... or simply grandstand at the expense of others. Satanism is a good target for these people, because you really don't have to know what you are talking about, as there is always some fool ready to swallow the most lurid and dark suppositions the blogger or commentator can come up with. Evidence be damned, innuendo and supposition enthrall the weak of mind and those whose minds (such as they are) are already made up.

I've been around the SIN chat for about a year and a half and yes, there can be some flakey sorts that make appearances from time to time. I can assure you, Noah was not among them. He was a bright young man with a quick wit, able to give and take a joke. He was always there with a ready smile and his latest adventure to tell. Were I to use one word to describe his demeanor, it would be "normal." And he was a normal kid, inquisitive and sometimes confused. Not a monster.

The more monstrous are those who would use this tragedy for their own ends. There should be a special hell for that kind of monster.

The most important dictum of Satanic ethics (yeah, believe it or not, there is such a thing) is that each individual is responsible for his or her actions. We don't blame original sin, concupiscence, a devil, our upbringing, our genes, or whatever else for our deeds. And we certainly don't blame movies, social networks or video games.

So yeah, this guy was a member of SIN. So what. He probably had a well-played copy of GTA IV as well. And who did he kill? SIN members, or his own family? I could just as easily make a mockery of his family as you can of SIN, but that would just be to illustrate absurdity with more of the same.

Hold Noah accountable for his actions, but please stop handing out good-guy badges and pretending that SIN had anything to do with what this guy did.

JK (another SIN admin)

Come on people... Amy Lemley is right on target and I, as a reader, want to know what may have caused this terrible crime. Learning more about the person, what they think, what they realate to (i.e. SIN) In many of these types of situations, including Columbine, the perpetrator left rantings, writings, relative lyrics, diaries, etc. that shed important light into the hows and whys of what occurred. This article also included positive commentary about the deceased. But it also lays out the public infomation that Noah, and his sister left behind that portrays some insight into their state of mind. If you ask me, this is balanced and helpful as we seek to determine what happen. When such tragedies occur and we find that the person had issues that may have been signals, warnings that could have helped a parent, teacher, friend or moderator of a website look into the situation further and perhaps get the person the help they need before something tragic happens.

I have now visited the SIN website and was disturbed by much of what I read. Zach Black is a most unimpressive individual not only as seen on his site, but by his posting here. Also hearing about the bullying that goes on there that many of it's members have themselves described here in these comments, I would want the police and the press to investigate this line further and I am thankful that the news provided this information. I am sure that the Hook will be there to tell us if this had nothing to do with it, if that is what the police ultimately determine. But it helps us, especially parents, as we observe what our children and their friends say, post and think about.

Very often the nicest co-worker, fellow-blogger, friend, may have deeper issues you know nothing about. Therefore it seems prudent to keep antennae up in order to get people the help they may need.

Interesting... A SIN member posted this on SIN:

Well, if somebody participates regularly on a Satanic site, then one day takes a gun and shoots his family and afterwards himself, no wonder that the newspapers are writing about it. It is a very interesting topic. Moreover, it is a well known fact in our "pious" society that everybody dabbling in the occult risks being possessed by a devil and that evil Satan's servants use black magic tricks to lure the innocent and naive people into a trap and destroy them. I doubt that any statements would convince these people that it is not the case.

Noah was simply an insane kid, a madman. The fact that he did not show any signs of insanity only proves him a psychopath. He is quite similar to this guy who shot people at the cinema. He also was a normal nice guy and nobody suspected him of being able to commit such a horrible crime. People can mask themselves very well.

Do not get me wrong. I do not condemn him. He might suffer a lot and if he was ill he is not responsible for his actions. I only think that you cannot always "screen" people with mental problems. If somebody says that he is going to kill himself or others it usually means that he does not want to do it. It is often a call for attention. However, if somebody really wants to commit suicide or murder or both he will not tell you about it.

Thank you for that quote Chicken Taco. They call Noah psychotic and insane amongst themselves, but here in public they act like they liked him. Simply deplorable and predictable.

I went to go visit this SIN website and found that the owner and the admins refer to what is going on here as "damage control." That says it all about how they see what is going on, and why they say what they say here in public.

Admins like Darkryder, JK, and the others are here to capitalize off of this tragedy and to do damage control.

I believe cyberbullying had something to do with this, and now these SIN kids are trying to cover up their tracks.

Anyone who uses the word "butthurt" is immature, needs a reality check and is clearly not a sophisticated or intellingent "leader".

Agreed Concerned Mother. That's exactly what they are doing. Thanks for pointing it out. I don't think we are dealing with very intelligent people here in the SIN community, hence why they even publicly call it "damage control". I'm with you about the cyberbullying. I hope this paper and others will deeply investigate this, as I am sure the police will. I have no doubt that SIN will have their tail between their legs in short order... though of course they will continue their stupid rantings.

And yes Get a clue.... who uses "butthurt"??? Please.

I agree Chicken Taco, I hope the police are sensible enough to look into this further to see how SIN fits into this. Maybe they influenced him, perhaps they cyberbullied him. I sent a complaint to wall.fm and I hope others who are concerned and who are disgusted with how the SIN members have taken advantage of this will too.

Concerned Mother, yes people at SIN liked Noah. Opinions about his sanity have only changed because he killed 3 people and then himself. Would you like me to say that was the action of a person that is not insane? Because clearly, sane people don't kill their families. Mental distress is the only logical explanation for what's happened here. Explain to me how liking a person until you find out he was the murderer is a bad thing?

@ Sammiesam
It is my impression that SIN is being two-faced in this tragedy, on the one hand members show what appears to me false concern for the victims and their family, whilst next they are talking about "damage control" and milking the tragedy for their own ends.

You talk about staying with the facts, but then make untrue and assumptive statements here and upon your own site. For the record I never said to anyone to complain to wall.fm. If people complain and you are shut down this will be your doing not mine.

As much as creating 12 different socks agreeing with each other might make a "case," it's gotta be taxing and boring as all hell. The bottom line here is simply this:

Satanists hold the individual responsible for his/her actions.

OTHERS (be they pansies, Christians, trolls, etc.) want to blame someone else.

It's really that simple.

What we have here in these comments is a conglomeration of butthurt kids who got booted from SIN for one reason or another. Nobody's fooled by "upset mommy" or whatever sign you might use.

Here, let me post the next whineration:

goofnutz: "Noah (pbuh) was a gentle soul, a human being who knew no wrong until he stumbled across that maddening website known only as SIN. SIN is bad, it is wrong, it is evil. They banned me because I wouldn't burn a live cat on video chat. SIN is everything that is wrong with the world. It's just wrong. Did I mention that they banned me? Did I mention the WRONGNESS? Poor Noah (audible sigh)."

JK

I agree with Mabuz. sIN is being two faced about this.

@Mabuz

This issue is multi-faceted.

First, there is the tragedy and sentiments about it.

Then, there is the media coverage of it, which, as I'm sure you're well aware, is quick to blame anything generally misunderstood by the mainstream culture -- in this case not just SIN but Satanism as well.

The original title of this article was "Dark Designs: Did Satan Play a Role in Stony Point Murder / Suicide?" If anyone is milking this tragedy - it's the media, doing what it does to sell papers.

JK (SIN admin) expresses what I mean about the insensitive and shallow way SIN admins and many of their members are treating this tragedy. Satanists are not known to be a sympathetic and caring group of people, and the concerns that some of them show for someone they hardly knew beyond an internet chatroom is insincere.

Shawn hits a good point that such tragedies like this impacts all those that follow the Left Hand Path tradition in how we are perceived.

Mabuz, I keep hearing this getting thrown around, but exactly what do you think we're milking this tragedy for? What could we possibly gain? Serious question here.

Mabuz is right. This effects us all. But SIN makes us all look worse here.

Thanks for the counterpoints to my position as well as for the expressions of agreement with my take on things. I have never met the reporter, Courteney Stuart, though I did email her with the info I found online. And yes, I have a deep interest in forensic psychology, for a number of reasons, so I do "go snooping around" on various websites, and not just social media sites. This incident shares much with the Aurora, Virginia Tech, and Columbine massacres; that the three victims were the shooters own family members only compounds the tragedy. There is nothing morbid about wanting to understand what happened; on the contrary, it is life-affirming, provided we are motivated by wanting to prevent such tragedies by offering enough resources for schools, families, and even peers to be able to seek help when someone they know seems at risk. Va Tech is the best example of a system trying but failing; journalists and investigators documented the many reports of that shooter's threatening behavior after the killings, allowing us to say, "Okay, what was missing that could make a difference going forward?"

@ Sammiesam
In answer to your question look at your SIN "Shoutbox"

FasterHarder says "Oh look, some free publicity..."
One of your senior members known as autodiabolic says "If anything this will be good for business."

The gain is members and publicity from the notoriety of a bad tragedy for your site. Let me give you a reality check, the media are a double-edged sword, they can lift you up but they can destroy you too.

@Mabuz --

"FasterHarder says "Oh look, some free publicity..."
One of your senior members known as autodiabolic says "If anything this will be good for business."

You know, sometimes even I miss sarcasm when it's written.

@ Amy Lemley
I live in the UK, and I can only observe a growing trend of people turning their guns on each other in the USA. As well as looking at the individual circumstances as an investigative reporter you may need to look at a larger picture of how all the shooting incidents are connected.

SIN is trying to milk free publicity. You dont see Cult of Cthulhu admins here milking this.

Lol, mabon that's not going to get us any quality users, and if anything those are joking comments. Even so, publicity doesn't do much for SIN, anyone involved in satanism that uses the internet to connect with other satanists have probably already seen the site at some point.

In regards to the media "destroying" us, you're just kidding yourself. What, some bad publicity means normal people aren't going to like us? Maybe make some silly complaints that have no basis in reality? OK, tell me how that works out.

Slybaby, the irony.

"SIN is milking this for publicity. Let me shamelessly plug my website.... for some publicity"

@Sammie -

I'm a admin at the CoC. At this point I'm fairly sure that Slybaby is a troll.

@ Sammiesam
"... joking comments" which supports my point that SIN's concern for the victims of this tragedy is shallow and false.

As to the dangers of dealing with the media, you have a lot to learn.

I know Shawn, I just had to say something

They banned me because I wouldn't burn a live cat on video chat. SIN is everything that is wrong with the world. It's just wrong. Did I mention that they banned me? Did I mention the WRONGNESS? Poor Noah (audible sigh)."

bull. no laveyan satanist would ask one to do such a thing.

I suggest for those of you that think Satanism or my network Satanic International Network check it out for yourselves.

http://satanicinternationalnetwork.wall.fm/index

@ Zach Black
Lets keep this issue in context, yes SIN has its critics, and many of those criticisms are justified comment. Everyone has a mind of their own to come to their own judgements from this tragedy.

Everyone is asking how this tragedy could have happened, and it is useful for them to have alternative views about SIN to compare.

You made the error of blogging about the tragedy on SIN which was how the media and police came to link SIN to the tragedy. From there you and your admins have made a series of misjudgements which shows your incredible naivety about the media and this tragedy.

The pathetic thing is those SIN wannabe self styled satanists have derailed a post about Noah and turned into something about them.

Chicken Taco, I'm really flattered that you posted my comment. I was worried that I would be forgotten. If you looked at all the comments a bit closer you would learn that Noah frequented only the chatroom. He did not participate in the forums. Not every user attends the chatroom. For those who do not Noah is a complete stranger. I only know that he wasted his own life and the lives of his mother, brother and sister. And yes, that makes him a psychopath.

@Sly "I felt so bad I almost cried and I felt like committing suicide." This one is precious. The evil Satanist crying. May Father Satan console you and your Cthulhu monsters come and hug you. Lol at this.

You should chat with people whom you know personally, whom you trust and who are your friends. If you do video chatting with complete strangers and you reveal a lot about yourself and your private life, no wonder that later your enemies use this information against you and humiliate you when you get under their skin. I see we have a concerned mother here. I thought that you and others complaining about SIN are adults, not kids. However, if you are kids, then, I think, your parents should control your computers so that you do not have access to the websites for adults.

Looks like Cherada is here too. You know whose missing? The 600 Ckub. I think Diavolo and Morgan and Xear need to do some damage control here too lol.

Well said, Anna Czereda.

I really doubt you are going to drag the 600 club into this as it has nothing to do with them. Much like it had nothing to do with you or the CoC. Unfortunately, the internet brings people together just like living in the real world does and if I know anything, conflicts arise far more than friendship. It's rather unfortunate what happened here because it started out as an explanation for those who didn't know what SIN was in comparison to the shadowlike reporting of it. This is a perfect example as to why the LHP could never be seen in a positive note and will always be underground, for lack of a better phrase.

RIP Noah and family. Again, deepest regards and sympathies.

The public should keep in mind that you won't find a murderer among the f active menbers of the Cult of Cthulhu. sIN lacks standards and morals.

One, the term moral is subjective to the individual.. it is only the public that put confines on what is moral and what is not.

Two, let it rest. You've stated you words against SIN several times and got the same response over and over. This is tired already. Leave the mourners to mourn and go get a blog like the rest of us to meander throughout your mental wailings.

This is NOT about you, me, SIN, CoC or anyone else.. this about an incident that hurt several people and will continue to hurt those people. give it a rest already.

Wow Slybaby, I guess that means you won't find a murderer amongst the Girl Scouts, Professional Golf Assoiation, or Future Farmers of America. Silly statement you made... Murderers can be anywhere and in any organization including your own. It only takes one bad seed to lack standards and morals.

If you take a moment to look at S.I.N you will note that the first reaction expressed by members there, regarding this tragedy, was one of sympathy, concern and shock.

This reaction was closely followed by people remembering Noah from chat and stating that he was liked and well thought of.

Does this reaction from S.I.N members seem consistent with the notion that this young man was treated poorly or abusively by the members at S.I.N?

Does this reaction from members seem consistent with the notion that he was driven to do what he did by S.I.N or its members?

And if S.I.N is such a bad place and filled with monsters or bullies etc. then how was such a sympathetic and concerned reaction possible in the first place?

Clearly the people who are attempting to smear S.I.N, or Zach, or any other S.I.N member are doing so for two main reasons:

1. They have had a negative experience at S.I.N and now feel obliged to seek revenge rather than acting in a mature manner and moving on.
2. They are engaged in some sort of ridiculous factional struggle in order to promote their own website/philosophy over and against S.I.N.

Either way, this does not deserve to be included in the commentary concerning a story about a tragedy of this sort. It belongs in the Satanic community, if it belongs anywhere.

By the way it is perfectly reasonable to me that Zach and his team at S.I.N should address any possible criticisms of S.I.N or of Satanism in general.

I have interacted with respected members who were actively involved in the defence of Satanism during the so called “Satanic Panic.” For better or worse Satanism is still a rather controversial religion/philosophy and Satanists hence need to be careful and vigilant when it comes to how Satanism is perceived and reported upon by the media.

.

How shamefully sad. I have nothing more to say to Mabon since the last time he and I had it out. Who cares what he has to say about the last comments? Obviously you... but anyone else? I am bored of your trolling. If you or anyone else has anything to say.. take it to where you know where we can be reached. This is not a pissing contest..

Fin.

what's interesting is that you could possibly accuse me of all admin of "mob attacking" or "cyberbullying" anyone. Mainly because, I don't do that stuff. I just don't. But again, everyone has their own opinion. I personally have no time to argue and run off anyone. If someone trolls and acts like a child, I'm the one that suspends them. Why waste my precious time and energy with belittling arguments?

Cyber bullying? Nay. That's just not how I run things.

All of that aside, you can stop critiquing what kind of person/admin I am when you clearly have no leeway to do so... thank you for your thoughts though. Have a good day.

Please all of you people griping at eachother, take it back to your own website chat rooms. This is getting ridiculous and it's only making you all and your satanic groups seem immature. Take your "butthurt" issues elsewhere.

I am the author of this piece. In response to the numerous comments and emails I have received, I have posted the following: http://www.readthehook.com/107153/apology-romando-and-walton-family-and-...

Courteney Stuart

If there any Left Hand Path connections, do you really think anyone at the police department practices or knows anything about it? I know of just one who isnt a detective. I seriously doubt they would ask for his help or assistance in regards to something that is frowned upon in this area. Its a shame too, he is quite knowledgeable on the occult and the darker topics no one seems willing to learn about.

It is nothing more than a tragedy that something like this could happen.

@courteney

Please take this article off of Hook, I find it very offensive and the comments below. I know you have created a new post saying you will revise the article. I thank you for doing so and I forgive you for not realizing the effect your post made on the family and community. I again urge you to take down this post immediately. Thanks

This 19-year old sounds like a very disturbed person. The details of thees children indicate trouble. I think Courtenay is doing a good job, investigating -- how could such a thing happen? Which is a question we all ask. This was violent and horrible. The song lyrics and Romando's writing and on-line associations sound violent and disturbed. I do not think we should normalize or minimize them. I am worried for any on here who would normalize or minimize such disturbing behavior. These children obviously needed intervention. Perhaps the ex-husband was so horrible to the mother during the divorce, which is common, that the children were sacrificed and continued to suffer. Children suffer immeasureably in this misogynistic culture.

The postings and rants of the satanic folks on this thread would give Mike Judge a whole season worth of Beavis and Butthead material. I suspect the next suspects will be Jimmy Page and Ozzy Osbourne.

R.I.P.: John Henry Bonham

The new article has replaced the original. Comments above this one refer to the original piece. --Courteney Stuart

Hello, can any Charlottesville reporter/journalist from any of our media,please find out if there was a follow-up on the "home invasion" incident which occurred around August 10th in Stony Point??

Here is the Romando/Walton family slideshow from the service at St. Thomas Aquinas.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2chHgd7wi_o

We new and loved this family.

Thanks....

"I suspect the next suspects will be Jimmy Page and Ozzy Osbourne."

My suspicion is by posting all this crap in an intelligence region that someones radar blipped a few times.

@ Amy Lemley: Congratulations, you are doing a great job of pimping this loser into the pantheon of famous killers. Three lives were stolen, countless lives ruined forever, but hey, you got a plug in for your book! Enough with your "forensic psychology" conceit, you are in service to no one but yourself.

wow lots of comments were deleted from here.

very informative article

"As a community, our fundamental concern is how to prevent this type of violence," says Amy Lemley --

Perhaps Ms. Lemley should acquaint herself with the gun-toting, bible thumping christian society that raises young men here in america to be tough and ready to join the army to fight for our nation. Perhaps that has something to do with it, rather than blame Satanism or movies or games or TV.

Its also interesting to note that most people who have been involved with Satanism who have been involved with murder are influenced more by christian beliefs on Satanism than from Satanism, itself. For instance, suicide is often frowned upon in Satanism but if a person wants to make that choice then it is their choice. they often face much less guilt and self-loathing than what Christianity offers young people today and unless they are mentally unstable to begin with, will likely find Satanism to be life-affirming and embracinig of healthy self esteem, an involvement with the arts, self-education, and generally a feeling of welcome and wellbeing..Simply put, Satanists enjoy life in the here and now and really have no need to hate themselves, to hate others or to hate life itself. But, like every other religion, if a person enters into a belief system and they have psychological problems to begin with, their experience will be influenced by their mental health.

This is in contrast with variations of the christian bible, who's verses suggest that murder is all right when it is done in the name of their god, it teaches about animal sacrifice [and in one instance, human sacrifice], that revenge and murder is OK if you are the god above, that stoning another person is allowed, that people should be allowed to have slaves, that a woman who is raped has shamed her family and should forced to marry her rapist and have the baby.... and various other things that would be considered to be immoral, horrible and insane if they were looked at according to today's standards [and laws]. If in doubt, please refer to the book that is called ''holy bible''. Whats so funny is that nowadays, Christians counter these facts by saying that the bible is interpretable, and that the explanations fit the reality [instead of the reality fitting the explanations!]

Aside from the violence in the bible, there is also christian culture. Look at their possession movies and what they teach about Satanism in those catholic christian schools [where molestation seems to be swept under the rug, conveniently!]. They teach that Satan is the embodiment of all that is evil, and that he will posses people and make them murder others. Really, the most horrible things are said about Satanists, right from Christian's mouths, and it is all a lie.

Youth are very impressionable, and if they have it drilled into their head that there is some evil being out there that makes them responsible for doing bad things, then don't be surprised, Ms. Lemley, if there are people who are mentally insane who cling to those Christian beliefs regarding Satan, who act out theirs insane fantasies at the cost of their own lives or the lives of others.

At this point, Ms. Lemley, it would be wise to ask, Why do people kill in the name of Satan?

The only real answer is because Christians who are mentally insane are taught by a Christian society that its what Satanists do. Christian society teaches the most horrible things imaginable regarding Satanism. You need only read the propaganda in the media from the late 70's to the early 90's [yes that long ago] to hear horrid stories about Satanic cults. This era was known as the Satanic Panic, and after it had been around for some time, sociologists studied it and determined that the stories from the panic [confessions brought about by suggestive hypnosis], and as each claim was investigated, it was revealed that there really were no cults after all, that no one had been tortured and murdered and that it was all a lie. People still believe these lies today.

You can't expect Christians to be an authority on what Satanists may or may not do. That's because they are Christian, not Satanists, and they care only for promoting their own agenda.

Perhaps the way to prevent this violence is to not teach our children beliefs that frighten, intimidate, demean and belittle children as they grow up so that when they are adults they can treat themselves and others with more respect. That means not teaching a child Christianity or any other religion until they are of legal age to make that decision for themselves. It is very possible to raise a child to be responsible, self-loving and loving of others without indoctrinating them into a religion where all the choices are created and made for them ahead of time as if they are all supposed to fit into a mold. Also stop making mental illness something to be ashamed of, and stop treating it like its the work of the devil [like they do to some children here in America, who are treated with exorcism instead of being given the medicine and counseling from a psychologist or psychiatrist that they need].
Teach people to respect each other, regardless of what religion they are, as well. that would end much of the misunderstanding and misery in this world.

after seeing that slideshow, this event appears even more perplexing. pictures are just a second in time, but the kids appear loved, cared for and well adjusted. even recent photos of the oldest son show him as open and content. what could have gone so horribly wrong? I dont know the family, or any details, so will not speculate. My only thought at the moment is I better go home tonight and be a better parent than I was last week.

chouva - perhaps to answer your question "what could have gone so horribly wrong" - could be found by studying into cases that had similar circumstances. I would imagine that the situation was similar to many teens and young adults here in america who face increasing pressures from society, friends and family. Add to that the angst, anger and confusion that comes with the teenage mind, along with the fact that teenagers aren't able to forsee consequences the way that adults can. For some teens, problems that are troublesome seem overwhelming, and it's because their brain is wired in a different way than an adults or even a child's. Teenagers are often unable to understand consequences, and they take risks because that is how their minds are wired to act and react.

We humans are not just a product of our genes. We are also a product of our environment. If the mother remarried [as recently as 60 days ago], this young man may not have had a good male role model in his life for quite some time. It is also possible that a son can feel neglected when a mother is dating or in the process of settling down in a marriage. it is also possible that the mother married in hopes that the son would accept his new father.

And, unfortunately, many women are foolish for staying in a marriage that is not working, especially when there is emotional stress involved, because they think that their children shouldn't come from a ''broken home'', but what's more broken, a home where parents stay together but feel nothing for each other [or worse] stay in a relationship that is physically or emotionally abusive. It is also possible that she had a failing marriage and they tried everything they could to make it work, but in the end it just wasn't meant to be. And even though some kids say that they dont think its their fault, EVERY kid feels that way, even though 99.9% it never is their fault that their parents divorced.

It is also possible that this young man was schizophrenic, or severely depressed, or even bipolar...mental illness could have been the issue, and sometimes these kinds of illnesses do not manifest until a person reaches young adulthood.

We do not know the facts in this case, we only have little bits and pieces to go on, and while we may eventually find out how it happened, we may never really know why.

And regardless of how it happened -- when things like this happen, really, in the end no one knows why..

Several replies were deleted. Censorship is a sign of weakness vis a vis position. Don't like what was said? Defeat it like an adult. And please, Courtney, stop pretending you're better than anyone; you're not. Selectively deleting comments is just some garbage.

JK

Seriously, you delete and censor comments from Zach Black, the owner of SIN, after linking his site?
WTF is wrong with The Hook?

I have to wonder about the revision of this article but it reads much better than the rushed version that was put on for the world to see. As for the comment above written about Courtney, I would sincerely hope that was not an actual SIN member by any means and if it were, I will find you and I will boot you. There is no reason for that type of language on this article and I'm not one to tolerate bs.

However, because I am quite certain that this wasn't a SIN member, I have to say that I am still unimpressed. This whole going back and forth thing is over with you guys. Get a life.

As for the taking down of comments by certain admin/the owner of SIN, shrugs.. censorship is not really looked fondly upon but what are we going to do?

@another SIN member.....Really? High on free speech and anonymity, you really have shown the true colors of your cause. Fancy.

There is this at the bottom of the page.

* Language stronger than "darn," insults, ethnically or racially disparaging language, and comparisons to Hitler usually result in speedy comment deletion and may get you blocked from further commenting. Ditto for posting unverified and/or potentially libelous allegations, and even off-topic digression. And to avoid spam, any comment containing more than two links gets eaten by Bigfoot.

Perhaps that is why some comments were 'censored.' While you may enjoy free speech where you stand, a publication is under no obligation to post the anonymous ramblings
of people. Sometimes it's perfectly fine to use common sense and say "Hmmm, this moronic blabbering takes away from this piece. I'm deleting it" I like the second article better too.

The comments are a privilege and not a right, and I think this online comment zone has long passed its usefulness, and so I'm turning it off. Anyone who still has an opinion to register can just send me a letter to the editor --hawes spencer, editor