Lily Burk and the Cheshire home invasion

Lily Burk (Newsweek photo)
Lily Burk (Newsweek photo)

Dennis Claxton on the murder of 17 yo Lily Burk in L.A. (via the LBO-Talk listserv) She was beaten to death by an assailant after her ATM card wouldn’t give him money.

This murder has been haunting me very directly. The abduction took place in the neighborhood I live in and Lily Burk’s body was left in her car two blocks from my office. I’ve been over there several times now. People have left flowers, candles, notes, and stuffed animals in front of the bay. I think I’ll leave something tomorrow.

I know what he means mean. Sue and I lived in CT briefly, in 2007 when the Cheshire home invasion happened. It stunned everyone. Beyond stunned really. Let me put it this way. Prior to that I lived in LA for 30 years and this was the most sickening home invasion I’ve ever heard of.

The only survivor, the father, was beaten to a pulp with a baseball bat. He wants the death penalty not life in prison, for the alleged humans who stole $15,000 from them, murdered his wife by cutting her throat, raped their 11 and 17 yo daughters repeatedly then doused them with gasoline and burned them alive. They did it clean and sober too, no alcohol or drugs were found in them. The cops caught them fleeing the house.

And it still haunts me.

Author James Ellroy on Lily Burk (no stranger to this, his mother was murdered)

The dead claim the living and tell us how to live. It is imperative that we listen and adhere to their sanction. We are required to work toward probity and comport ourselves as though our lost ones are there with us. This call to virtue proves efficacious over time. We send messages to a spirit and get no material answer. There is only the assumption that she is there and we are here and we must not falter at our task. There is no human terror that the persistent application of love and devotional consciousness cannot transcend. Lily Burk will not return to earth as a 17-year-old girl. Her task is to impart courage in her invisibility. Lily Burk offers us a survival manual, written in her own blood. We are urgently charged to honor her and seek goodness at all costs.


  1. My apologies: my below article had some typos that I have corrected. My emotions got the better of me and should have proof-read my work more thoroughly. Please disregard prior article.

    I cannot even comprehend the viciousness of this crime against Lily Burk and her family, and I hope these horrific excuses of human beings are given the death penalty but slowly and painfully.

    The justice system in our society appears to go out of its way to protect these sociopathic predators while the victims are struggling to exist in a violent, unforgiving world. The Law keeps serial killers such as Manson alive for 40 years even though he was responsible for the most horrendous killing spree in history. Why wasn’t he and his cronies executed and save taxpayers the money spent every day, every month and every year rather than keeping these deranged lunatics alive with one up for parole? Why? On top of it all, most states do not allow innocent U.S. citizens to protect themselves with a lethal weapon to blow any sons of bitches away when threatened with violence.

    I am PRO-death penalty all the way to those mother-f’ers who dare to take a life for no other reason because they can. Now the State of California is planning to start releasing 40,000 prisoners over the next two years because of overcrowded jail facilities. Maybe the courts should think about who they are putting in the prisons and for what. Jail time for an ounce of weed is a bunch of hooey and those folks should be fined a penalty and maybe community time. The Courts need to leave room for the real criminals such as rapists, murderers, thieves, stalkers and pedophiles. They alone should overcrowd the jails enough.

    Regardless, my belief is if you can’t get a permit for a gun, at least everyone should arm themselves with personal protection devices such as pepper sprays, TASER devices, mace, and stun guns because these are all non lethal and legal in most states.

    There are affordable solutions to protect your home and office such as window and door alarms, wireless security systems and dummy cameras that look like the real thing. There are also higher end options such as professional surveillance equipment and hidden cameras that will know what’s going on in your home even when you are not there. Diversion cans are an excellent solution to hide your valuables in plain sight by concealing them in cans that look like everyday products such as soda cans, books and flower pots.

    The American people need to start taking action by protecting themselves as much they can because certainly, the Justice System has proven time and time again that the criminals have more rights than we do. And now that Schwarzenegger line item vetoed the Department of Public Health’s Domestic Violence Program, which provides $20.4 million for 94 domestic violence shelters and centers, this proves even further that the Government could care less about the American people’s safety, especially if there is no revenue to gain by it.

    Stay safe out there and prayers to to the Burke Family. May Lily, her mom and siblings rest and peace and that her dad gets his wish for the murderers to be sentenced the death penalty.

  2. “The Law keeps serial killers such as Manson alive for 40 years even though he was responsible for the most horrendous killing spree in history.”

    I’m not sure that’s a gift. A friend, currently doing 36 to Life in a California prison (for getting into a fist fight with another drunk– his third strike) will probably die in prison. He once told me he considered petitioning for the death penalty because spending the rest of his life in a cell in Calipatria, CA, was cruel and unusual punishment. He wasn’t being humorous. These guys are starved, isolated, and victims of predators unless they become predators themselves. If that’s not Hell on earth, I don’t know what is.

    Personally, I’m in favor of the right to bear arms for self defense, though statistics show no correlation (positive or negative) between gun ownership and violent crime. However, I don’t support the death penalty. I don’t see how the government can prohibit killing on any moral ground when it does so itself– and, as The Innocence Project has now shown, it executes the innocent far too often.

    • Next time you might want to actually check the facts before posting racist drivel about how some races are inferior.

      The perpetrators of the hideous Cheshire Home invasion torture / murders were both White, as were the victims.

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