The Haunting True Story Behind The 1961 “Kiss & Kill” Murder
Content Warning: This conversation touches on suicide and self-harm. If you are concerned about your own emotional wellbeing, are experiencing a personal crisis or are concerned about someone else, contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 or at www.lifeline.org.au
Betty Williams was a spirited teenager killed in the prime of her life – so what did investigators do when they found out Betty had organised her own murder?
Betty was much more than just your average American teenager, with aspirations of becoming an actress and progressive ideologies that reached far beyond her time.
As a sex positive 17-year-old with a passion for counterculture writers like Jack Kerouac, Betty Williams was a complicated and misunderstood teenager who would eventually meet a tragic and complicated end.
While Betty’s alternative approach to life was controversial, to jock and football star 18-year-old John “Mack” Herring, she was captivating.
Episode 439: Kiss and Kill Murder
The pair started dating and while Betty fell head over heels, it wasn’t long before Mack fell for someone else and ended his relationship with Betty.
In the months that would follow, Betty’s mental health would continue to decline as she grappled with societal expectations, the loss of her relationship and her dreams of becoming a star being taken away.
Betty eventually came to the tragic decision to end her own life but with one caveat – she wanted her ex-boyfriend, Mack, to be the one to pull the trigger.
After penning a note absolving him of all guilt, Mack agreed to the plan and eventually would be the one to take Betty’s life.
While the case seemed cut and dry and that Mack was on a clear path to prison, Betty’s murder became one of the most complicated and haunting cases in history.
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