Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

John Joubert, Nebraska Boy Snatcher

Final Victim

With the Chris Walden murder, Joubert had left the barracks early that morning, intent on finding a child.  He'd felt a growing need to kill someone.  He knew where kids in town got on the bus, and he'd targeted a young girl, but when he arrived, she was not there that freezing December morning.  So he changed direction and headed for a nearby elementary school.  That's when he spotted Chris.  Joubert approached him to ask for directions.

It was a high-risk maneuver.  Others were walking to school as well, and people were driving.  But Joubert showed Chris his knife sheath and ordered him to get into the car.  The frightened boy obeyed, although Joubert was not much bigger than him. Joubert ordered him to the floor, even as people drove by and looked at them, and then he drove to an isolated area near the railroad tracks.  He told Chris what to do and Chris acquiesced, although he was crying and clearly scared.

Joubert ordered him to undress, and though there was an icy wind, the boy removed each item of clothing, one at a time, and placed them neatly in a pile.  Joubert told him to leave his underwear on, but to lie down.  Chris refused, which surprised Joubert.  Thus far, people had usually complied with his orders.  And this time he had no rope or tape with him to bind his victim.  Chris resisted him and they struggled, but Joubert managed to overpower the boy.  Then Chris rolled away, so Joubert stabbed him with his knife.  Chris screamed and Joubert kept stabbing until his victim lay still and bleeding.  Finally, he sliced through the boy's neck, to ensure that he was dead.


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