crimesider

Jennifer Daugherty (Photos): "Friends" Killed Disabled Woman, Forced Her to Write Suicide Note

(Facebook Photo)
(KDKA/Westmoreland County Prison)
GREENSBURG, Pa. (CBS/AP) Jennifer Daugherty, a mentally disabled woman in rural Pennsylvania allegedly suffered unimaginable horrors at the hands of her killers, who her father says pretended to be her friends.

Photo: Jennifer Daugherty.

PICTURES: Disabled Woman Tortured, Killed by "Friends"

They fed her vegetable oil, spices, detergent, urine and medications, then forced her to write a suicide note, before they stabbed her to death, wrapped her in plastic, put her in a garbage can and dumped her in a school parking lot, police and relatives said Friday.

Six people have been charged.

Photo: Top L-R, Robert Masters, Melvin Knight, Ricky Ven Smyrnes; Bottom L-R, Amber Meidinger, Angela Marinucci and Peggy Miller.

PICTURES: Disabled Woman Tortured, Killed by "Friends"

The head of the 30-year-old had been shaved, and she had been bound with Christmas decorations and clothing; she also was hit with a towel rack, vacuum cleaner hose and a crutch, according to an affidavit.

Six people were charged with criminal homicide, kidnapping and related charges in the death of Daugherty, who was missing since Monday and whose body was found Thursday at Greensburg Salem Middle School, about 30 miles east of Pittsburgh.

Charged were Robert Loren Masters Jr., 36, Ricky Smyrnes, 23, Melvin Knight, 20, Amber Meidinger, 20, all of Greensburg; a 17-year-old girl from Greensburg; and Peggy Darlene Miller, 27, of Mount Pleasant Township. All were being held without bond in the Westmoreland County prison. It was not clear whether they had attorneys.

Stepfather Bobby Murphy, 62, of Mount Pleasant, told The Associated Press that the victim had the mental abilities of a 12 to 14-year-old.

According to an affidavit of probable cause, Knight admitted stabbing Daugherty in the chest, side and neck, and he and Smyrnes carried her body to the parking lot. All six defendants admitted their involvement and implicated others, according to police.

A man found Daugherty's body Thursday morning when he saw the plastic garbage can partially beneath his truck.

"One thing I can tell you is there is no reason for them to do what they did to Jennifer," Murphy said. "Jennifer was just a gentle, laid-back person.

"There wasn't a mean bone in her body."

MEDIA
PICTURES: Disabled Woman Tortured, Killed by "Friends"

  • Edecio Martinez

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