Did Slayer Inspire a Heavy Metal Band To Commit Murder?

Did Slayer Inspire a Heavy Metal Band to Commit Murder?

Today on Rock N’ Roll True Stories they take a look at the time Slayer got accused of inspiring a trio of musicians to commit a horific murder.

I had previously covered the time Judas Priest and Ozzy Osbourne were accused of being responsible for encouraging fans of theirs to take their own lives. Each of the cases resulted in the parents of the deceased bringing lawsuits against the musicians. Those stories happened in the 80’s, when heavy metal and hard rock were under constant scrutiny for negatively influencing AMerica’s Youth. A similar case with a different twist happened to the metal band Slayer in 2001 That’s what we’re going to explore in today’s video. 3 california teens 15 year olds Jacob Delashmutt (Delashmitt) Joseph Fiorella and 16 year old Royce Casey who were avid slayer fans and were in their own band named Hatred. The trio of teens were social outcasts and had rough upbringings dabbling in drugs and alcohol and were big fans of the occult. They believed according to news reports that they would need to commit and i quote ‘a sacrifice to the devil’ to get their band to hit the big time and improve their skills as musicians. Sadly, the young men would carry through with their plan. Their plan would be carried out on a July evening in 1995. The trio would phone a 15 year old girl named Elyse Pahler (Elise Pawler), who was the eldest of four kids, whose father was a Contractor and mother was a tennis instructor. According to entertainment weekly, Delashmutt had met Pahler in a drug treatment program and had previously gone to school together before Delashmutt was kicked out of school. On that July evening the trio llured the blonde teen with a promise of pot to a wooded area overlooking the ocean. After meeting up with the teens and chatting for a bit they would viciously attack and kill her. Pahler’s parents would report their daughter as missing, but no body would be found. Unbeknownst to the authorities and the parents at the time their daughter’s body was lying a quarter of a mile from their home. It was months after the murder, Royce Casey had found God and become a Christian, renouncing his past beliefs, but also feeling guilt over what he had done.. Casey by this point had been estranged from his bandmates and was worried he or other women would be the target of his former friends as they had previously hinted that Elise wouldn’t be the only one offered as a sacrifice. Casey would confess his crimes to a clergymen and eventually to the police and led them to the location of Pawler’s body. Soon afterwards the other two youths would be arrested and confessed to their part of the crime. It was now March of 1996. It would come out later on that this wasn’t the first time the boys had tried to kill Elise, but the previous attempt Elise thought the boys were joking around and never reported it. Casey would tell the police that they carried out the act as a satanic sacrifice and were inspired by the band Slayer whose song Alter Of Sacrifice features the lyrics ”High priest awaiting dagger in hand/Spilling the pure virgin blood.” The three youths would be sentanced 25 years to life. Pahler’s parents would file a lawsuit against Slayer, their label American Recordings and the parents of the teens,They claim that the band and the company violated a Californian business code which prohibits the marketing and distribution to minors of “harmful” and “obscene” material. The lawsuit had to wait nearly four years until it went to civil court. The lawsuit contended that songs like ‘Postmortem’ and ‘Dead Skin Mask’ gave the perpetrators of their daughter’s murder a step by step guide of murder and other crimes. Fiorella reportedly told police that Slayer music “started to influence the way I looked at things.” But his bandmate Delashmutt told a different story telling the Washington Post and i quote “The music is destructive,””That’s not why Elyse was murdered. She was murdered because Joe [Fiorella] was obsessed with her, and obsessed with killing her.” The band and their label would claim protection under the first amendment and a judge would agreed throwing out the case, despite the fact that judge thought the lyrics were repulsive. The movie Jennifer’s body would draw inspiration from the murder case. As recently as 2021 Casey was granted parole but a petition to