Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Arthur Frederick Goode - Sick Child Killer

This was one of those cases that inspire revulsion equally for the crimes, but with some, for the punishment.  Arthur Frederick Goode was a remorseless child killer, who as a last request before his execution, made a truly revolting one.  Critics of the death penalty would cite that he was not in control of his mental faculties.  Goode was borderline retarded.  Not so retarded with what he told cops who arrested him.  Not so retarded with his taunting of the families of his victims.  Not so retarded when he smirkingly made his last request.  Goode was a danger to children since he was a teenager, yet his parents bailed him out every time.

    Goode was born in Hyattsville, Maryland on 28th March 1954, but what triggered his behaviour seems to be unknown.  He gained attention as a teenager, for making sexual advances to young boys.  This made him a notorious character in his neighbourhood.  He was arrested three times for indecent assault on young boys but his parents bailed him out each time.  By march 1975, he had been arrested for sexual assault on a 9 year old boy.  Yet again, his parents bailed him out.  They paid $25,000.  Then whilst on bail, he molested a boy of 11 but part of the deal was that he voluntarily became a patient at Spring Grove State Hospital.  The term was "voluntary" which naturally he walked away from after some time, travelling to Florida, where his parents had moved to.   He also received 5 years probation.  A bench warrant was issued for him but it would seem that this dangerous paedophile was not dangerous in the eyes of Police, as nobody bothered to apprehend him.  This was to have very tragic circumstances for two families.

    Goode approached a young boy at a school bus stop on March 5th 1976, in Fort Myers.  Jason Verdow, 9, was tricked by Goode into going into nearby woods to search for something.  There he strangled the boy.  Goode was subsequently questioned twice by Police, but not arrested.  He made his way back to the Spring Grove Hospital but only stayed for a couple of minutes, then fled.  He believed the staff were contacting Police.  Another rational conscious decision.  He then persuaded a ten year old boy, Billy Arthe to go with and visit Washington DC.  For the next ten days, they slept in cheap motels.  Then on March 20th, they came upon 11 year old Kenny Dawson, and persuaded him to accompany them to Tysons Corner, in Virginia.  There he took him into woods, forced him to strip, then strangled him with a belt.  Billy Arthe looked on terrified.  In Falls Church, a woman recognised Billy from a photograph that had been issued and called cops.

    As he was being taken away, Goods told Police "You cannot do anything to me.  I`m sick"   Yes, quite a rational thing to say, and already paving the way for a defence.  A jury in Maryland did not agree with him and he was given a life sentence for the murder of Kenny Dawson.  Extradited to Florida, he was convicted of the murder of Jason Verdow and sentenced to death.  From Death Row, he taunted the families, boasting of his crimes.  Asked for a last request, he said he wanted sex with a little boy!!!!  On 5th April 1984, they strapped this waste of sperm into the chair and gave him a shock.   Goode had a sort of obsession with child actor Ricky Schroeder, so was his murders his way of "killing" Ricky?  Who knows?