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Holiday Horror: The Most Gruesome Thanksgiving Murders Exposed

Murders That Took Place On Thanksgiving Are Exposed update 2019
Source: Morrison Co Jail; Jupiter PD; Alameda Co DA; Teller Co Sheriff's Office

Nov. 27 2019, Updated 5:54 p.m. ET

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Thanksgiving usually brings families together to bond over turkey dinner, but in some cases the holiday has resulted in horror.

At a time when Americans come together to share a hearty meal and give thanks, family feuds have erupted in gunfire and strangers have been slaughtered.

The most recent case to shock America occurred when Kelsey Berreth, 29, mom to a now-1-year-old daughter, disappeared from a grocery store in Woodland Park, Colorado, on Thanksgiving in 2018.

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Her fiancé and baby daddy, Patrick Frazee, was accused of killing Berreth that day and burning her body, which has never been found.

Frazee was convicted of first-degree murder almost a year later, on November 18, 2019, just days before Thanksgiving.

Frazee was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole, plus 156 years for the killing.

Frazee’s mistress, Krystal Lee Kenney, testified in the first week of the trial that she helped him clean up a bloody mess at Berreth’s condo.

During her testimony, she claimed he told her he killed Berreth with a bat.

Unfortunately, the shocking crime isn't the only turkey day nightmare to have taken place over the years.

Ayalis Clay Oliver allegedly killed his son Keith Oliver over the younger man’s refusal to help out around the house on Thanksgiving in 2009.

And Byron David Smith lay in wait on Thanksgiving 2012 and shot two teens to death in his basement.

Former youth pastor Christopher Gattis pleaded guilty in 2018 to three counts of first-degree murder for killing his wife, stepdaughter and her boyfriend while they all played a board game during Thanksgiving 2017.

In 2018, Nicholas Holden was sentenced to 16 years in prison for the second degree murder of his girlfriend Tina Stewart after they had celebrated Thanksgiving together in 2017.

Southern California investigators recently solved the murder of 11-year-old Terri Lynn Hollis, nearly five decades after her Thanksgiving Day kidnapping in 1972. Genetic genealogy identified Jake Edward Brown, who died in 2003, as the man responsible for the girl's disappearance and death.

Andre J. White of Detroit has pled not guilty for charges relating to a fatal shooting of 3-year-old Malachi Barnes on Thanksgiving Day 2018.

Scroll though's gallery for more shocking Thanksgiving crimes.

Patrick Frazee

This booking photo provided by the Teller County Sheriff's office shows Patrick Frazee
Source: Teller County Sheriff's Office

Frazee's fiancé Berreth was last seen with her daughter Kaylee on Thanksgiving Day 2018 as they shopped for groceries at the Woodland Park supermarket in Colorado. It is believed she then stopped by Frazee's home to drop off their daughter, but instead he murdered her and disposed of her body. Frazee was convicted of the crime.

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Asmerom & Tewodros Gebreselassie

Murders That Took Place On Thanksgiving Are Exposed
Source: Alameda County District Attorney's Office

Brothers Asmerom and Tewodros Gebreselassie were convicted for the murders of three family members at the Mehari Thanksgiving in Oakland, Calif., in 2006, but Tewodros later had his conviction overthrown. The siblings, 53 and 44, went on trial for killing their sister-in-law Winta Mehari, 28, her mother Regbe Bahrengasi, 50, and her brother Yonas Mehari, 17, on Thanksgiving. The Gebreselassie brothers were seeking to avenge their brother Abraham’s death, whom they believed had been murdered by his wife, prosecutors said. However, a pathologist ruled that Abraham had died of natural causes. Tewodros called Asmerom from the Mehari Thanksgiving celebration and and opened the door for Asmerom to come into the apartment. Tewodros then kidnapped their infant nephew while Asmerom shot the three victims to death. In 2011, the brothers were sentenced to life in prison but Tewodros was released in 2016 after having his conviction overthrown and his prison sentence revised.

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Paul Merhige

Murders That Took Place On Thanksgiving Are Exposed
Source: Jupiter Police Department

Paul Merhige had been estranged from family members for years when he asked to attend a cousin's Thanksgiving dinner in Jupiter, Florida, in 2009. After the meal, he gunned down four relatives: his aunt, Raymonde Joseph, 76; his 33-year-old twin sisters Carla Merhige and Lisa Knight, 33, who was pregnant; and Makayla Sitton, just 6, the daughter of his cousin. "I've been waiting 20 years to do this," Merhige, 35, said during the murders. Merhige pleaded guilty in 2011 and was sentenced to life in prison.

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Byron David Smith

Murders That Took Place On Thanksgiving Are Exposed
Source: Morrison County Jail

In a notorious Thanksgiving case, Byron David Smith lay in wait to shoot two teenagers to death in 2012. Haile Kifer, 18, and her cousin, Nicholas Brady, 17, broke into the home of Smith, 64, in Little Falls, Minnesota. Smith gunned them down as they entered his basement where he was waiting, after having allegedly observed them casing his place earlier. Though Smith claimed the "castle doctrine," which gives a person the right to defend his home, and told police he was worried that the kids were armed, the prosecution said the killings were premeditated. Also, a medical examiner said that Smith's first shots didn’t kill the two, but he continued to shoot them. Smith was convicted and sentenced to life in prison.

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Ayalis Clay Oliver

Murders That Took Place On Thanksgiving Are Exposed
Source: El Paso County

Ayalis Clay Oliver, 76, was accused of killing his son Keith Oliver, 49, allegedly over Keith's refusal to help out around the house on Thanksgiving Day 2009, in Colorado. The two allegedly argued for hours over Keith not doing chores. Keith’s mother ordered him to leave, but he refused, and Ayalis then allegedly shot his son to death with his .357-caliber revolver. Keith's last words reportedly were that he was "trying to stand up like a man."

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Christopher Gattis

Murders That Took Place On Thanksgiving Are Exposed
Source: Chesterfield County VA
Thanksgiving Murders

Christopher Gattis, a former church youth pastor in Richmond, Virginia, pleaded guilty in 2018 to three counts of first-degree murder for killing his wife, stepdaughter and her boyfriend on Thanksgiving 2017. Gattis, 59, shot to death wife Jeanett L. Gattis, 58, stepdaughter Candice L. Kunze, 30, and her boyfriend, Andrew Buthorn, 36, after he demanded that Kunze and Buthorn leave but they didn't. When his wife and the two later were playing a board game in the kitchen, Gattis emptied his gun on them. He later claimed to cops that the victims "all ganged up on me." He received a 58-year sentence.

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Cody Gann And Jasmine Cary

Murders That Took Place On Thanksgiving Are Exposed
Source: Bexar County Sheriff's Office

Cody Gann, 18, and Jasmine Cary, 19, were arrested for allegedly killing 10-year-old girl in a drive-by shooting on Thanksgiving 2017 in San Antonio, Texas. Police believe that little Delilah Hernandez was hit by gunfire while watching television in a back bedroom on Thanksgiving morning last year. She was pronounced dead at a hospital. Cary has claimed she and Gann didn't shoot anyone because they were delivering drugs. Local Police Chief William McManus has contended that they two were in a dispute with Delilah Hernandez's older brother. According to reports, the brother had had a relationship with Cary before she started dating Gann. "She's the one who showed him where we lived,” said Jackie Vega, Delilah’s mother. Both Cary and Gann have been charged with murder, News4 San Antonio has reported.

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Nicholas Holden

Murders That Took Place On Thanksgiving Are Exposed
Source: Nick Holden/Facebook

In summer 2018, Nicholas Holden was sentenced to 16 years in prison for the second-degree murder of his girlfriend Tina Stewart after they had celebrated Thanksgiving together in 2017. Holden and Stewart had been at Holden's father's home for Thanksgiving and they stayed the night. In court docs, Holden admitted he and Stewart then had argued and it got physical. He claimed to investigators they both fell asleep, and later he woke up to find his girlfriend unresponsive. She died, and police said it appeared she had suffered a severe beating. Holden admitted in court that his actions have "caused the loss of an amazing woman" and vowed to never drink alcohol again.

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Jake Edward Brown

Jake Edward Brown 1972 Booking Photo
Source: LAPD

Genetic genealogy recently identified Jake Edward Brown, who died in 2003, as the man responsible for the disappearance and death of Terri Lynn Hollis, 11. The little girl vanished from her family's home in Torrance, California on Thanksgiving on Nov. 23, 1972. Fishermen found Hollis' body on a cliff below the Pacific Coast Highway in Oxnard the next day. An analysis of public databases by Parabon NanoLabs Inc. led investigators to a relative of Brown. Police had preserved a DNA sample from Hollis' body, and it matched. Authorities then dug up Brown's body in Arizona to confirm he had killed Hollis.

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Andre J. White

ANDRE JAMES WHITE mugshot Michigan DOC
Source: MDOC

Andre J. White was already serving time in prison for murder when he was arraigned in fall 2019 for charges relating to a separate fatal shooting of 3-year-old Malachi Barnes. The toddler was in the back seat of his father’s vehicle when it was allegedly sprayed with bullets on Thanksgiving 2018. The Detroit man has pleaded not guilty.

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Kameron Joyner

Kameron Joyner Mugshot Allen County Sheriff D Indiana
Source: Allen County Sheriff's Department

On Thanksgiving night 2018, Tracey Andrews, Colton Messmer, and Joevonn Johnson were shot to death. Police claimed Kameron Joyner and co-defendant Gerald Pinkston came that night to settle a drug debt. Joyner pled guilty and has been ordered to serve a 200-year sentence for the crime. Pinkston's trial is set to take place in December 2019.

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Jason Aaron Gibson

Jason Aaron Gibson MUGSHOT Arrest photo from Las Cruces Police
Source: Las Cruces Police Department

Jason Aaron Gibson faces one count each of capital murder of multiple persons, aggravated robbery and aggravated kidnapping for an alleged crime spree on Thanksgiving Day 2018. Prosecutors claimed Gibson broke into a home in Las Cruces, New Mexico, beating the homeowner and kidnapping a woman from the home. Authorities say he forced her to drive him to northeast El Paso, Texas, where Gibson broke into another home and shot three people from a family, killing Jonathan and Juan Pablo Salas. Lorenza Salas was also shot in the eye, but survived. A trial date is currently set for August 13, 2021.

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Michael Edward Keetley

Michael Edward Keetley Mugshot Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office FLORIDA
Source: Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office

Nine years after a Thanksgiving Day shooting spree in Florida, Michael Edward Keetley's trial has been set for February 2020. Prosecutors allege that former ice cream truck driver was out for revenge in 2010 after he was robbed and weeks later approached men playing cards on the porch of a home on Thanksgiving morning. Keetley allegedly got out of a van wearing a shirt that read "sheriff," carrying a shotgun. Keetley allegedly asked for someone named "Creeper," told them all to get down, and then opened fire. Cops contend Keetley had targeted the wrong men in his alleged scheme to get even. Juan and Sergio Guitron died and four other men were wounded. Keetley has pleaded not guilty.



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