It was the evening of 7 August, 2008, and Crystal Walker left her 5-year-old daughter, Isabella, in care of her great-grandparents, Henry and Sharon Lascelle, while she went to work at a sports bar. Living a couple doors down from the couple was 16-year-old John Freeman. John was a regular fixture at the Lascelle household. He often helped mow the lawn and used their computer and sometimes even slept in the spare room when he didn’t want to pay for heat. He certainly was taken under their wing and would often take advantage of their generosity.
At approximately 11PM, Henry and Sharon went to sleep. When they awoke, Isabella was missing. They called the police who mounted a search. The first point of call was to go to John’s home. He had been at the Lascelle household that evening so they hoped he knew something about her whereabouts. When police questioned him, he was uncommunicative and told them the last time he saw her was when he left the Lascelle home before they went to bed that night. He didn’t offer to assist in the search and seemed disinterested in the entire ordeal, even standoffish.
After searching for hours, police were led to a trash can four blocks from the Lascelle home. The person who directed police there was John’s best friend, Tyler Best. Overcome with guilt, Tyler had walked to the police station to reveal what he knew about the disappearance and death of the little girl. John eventually confessed that he had strangled Isabella with his bare hands before asking Tyler to help him dispose of her body. The motivation behind the senseless murder was never revealed, however it was announced that Isabella had not been molested. John was sentenced to 22 years to life.