Each day as we scroll our news feed, we see stories of people treating others more cruelly than the day before. It begs to ask where the callousness and lack of empathy for human suffering stems from. It’s a question we do not yet have an answer to.
However, a Tennessee teen showed this week that even the closest family bond- brotherhood- is no exception to this appalling trend.
Police say a 13-year-old boy vacationing in Florida stabbed his older brother because he did not want to sit in the car with him for the drive back to Tennessee. The teen showed no sign of remorse or empathy saying:
“I stabbed him and I don’t care about going back to jail. I’d rather be in jail than eight hours in the car with him”.
It all began in a parked car in a driveway in the panhandle town of Crestview, Florida. The 13-year-old reported that he was angry at his 15-year-old brother for teasing him. That’s why, according to police, he attacked him with a multi-tool, stabbing him three times in the arm.
The older teen, who was capable of getting back to the house to call 911, was transported by ambulance to an area hospital where he was treated for deep puncture wounds.
However, before leaving the scene, the older teen is noted to have been yelling from the rear of the ambulance apparently enticing friends to seek revenge on his younger brother for his injuries.
“We’ve had incidents with siblings but not this young,” Watkins said. “I have never dealt with them this young with this violent of a crime.”
The nature of the crime exceeds sibling rivalry. The 13-year-old faces charges of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon. He was confined to a juvenile detention center.
Sibling violence has been no small matter in northern Florida.
In 2015, in White Springs, just a few hours’ drive from Crestview, a pair of sisters were arrested for the murder of their older brother. According to Daily Mail via Associated Press, Misty Kornegay, 15, and Nicole Kornegay, 11, shot their 16-year-old brother as he lay asleep on the floor of their family living room.
Misty reported to authorities that their older brother Damien had beaten her and locked her in a bedroom. She and her 11-year-old sister waited until the older teen fell asleep before breaking out a window and re-entering the home through the parents room where a gun was stored.
They brought the firearm into the living room and Misty shot the sleeping boy. The pair of girls then fled the family home leaving behind a fourth sibling 3-year-old girl, according to New York Daily News’ Deborah Hastings.
Eleven-year-old Nicole called a friend seeking a ride for her and her sister. The mother of the friend picked the girls up and alerted police that something seemed amiss.
According to Daily Mail, Officers Brad Meeks and Joseph Dyess noted in their reports that when 13-year-old Misty spoke of the shooting at home she continued to apply eye makeup and ‘would not maintain eye contact and appeared emotionless.’
Police responded to the home finding Damien Kornegay deceased on the floor and the toddler left completely unattended. It is estimated that the 3-year-old girl was left with the dead body for approximately 4 hours, according to Florida Times-Union’s Derek Gilliam.
Parents Keith and Misty Kornegay were charged with child neglect for leaving the children unattended for several days. Keith Kornegay is a long haul trucker and it was common for both parents to leave the children while they were on the road.
Further investigation revealed years of child abuse particularly inflicted upon 15 year old Misty Kornegay who wished to be called Ariel, Gilliam reports. Her uncle Kevin Kornegay was later convicted of sexual abuse and sentenced to life in prison. Gilliam also reports that there may have been an incestual relationship between Misty and her brother Damien.
Hastings quoted Columbia County Sheriff Mark Hunter saying:
“This is the stuff nightmares are made of… This is really, really a sad case.”