Kids That Kill: Wendy Gardner & James Evans kill Elizabeth “Betty” Gardner, Wendy’s grandmother

DVawareness

Betty Gardner
Betty Gardner

Find-A-Grave: Elizabeth Betty Gardner
State police say Saugerties teens killed grandmother
Girl’s plans for revenge led to grandmother’s murder
‘Just Do It': Last Word Became Last Rites for Doomed Grandmother
Girl, 15, Guilty in Her Grandmother’s Killing
Woman convicted of murder of grandmother as 13-year-old is released from prison on parole
Killer at 13, parole try not far off
Parole Board viewed Evans as ‘danger … to society’

Books
Kill Grandma for Me

Movies/Documentaries
Killer Kids: Family Killers
Deadly Women: Mean Teens

Defendants
Gweneviere Wendy Gardner – convicted; sentenced to almost 8 years in prison (paroled 2004)
James Evans – convicted; sentenced to 9 years to life in prison (Will be paroled in January 2014, but this is unconfirmed)

14 Responses

  1. James Evans has been moved from one prison to another. As of 2013 he IS still in custody and trying to get paroled, as he attempts every 2 years. Those closest to him say he hasn’t changed much. Has a conduct disorder, still obsessed with his past, he justifies taking a life, and they say it would be best for everyone if he never gets released.

  2. Hmm…as someone that is very close to him and his family I would disagree with the statement that he hasn’t changed much. In fact, I can’t think of anyone close to him that would say that. Who exactly is your informant, or did you make that up? You are also incorrect about the parole. He was granted parole in November and will be released in January 2014. Sorry to bust that bubble as well. Wait…not really. I’m quite happy for him :). You would also be incorrect to imply that his being moved from prison to prison is because of conduct. It happens for a variety of reasons. I am curious why you keep such a close eye on him. Who exactly are you to be smearing him anyway? I’m going to guess Wendy’s lover. Am I hot or cold?

    • Lovelylady,

      I am not certain as to who you are talking to. I am the blog owner, and I post on many, many cases like this. I am not out to smear anyone, and have no idea who Wendy’s lover is, nor do I care. I care about the victim, Elizabeth Gardner, who you never even bothered to mention. I have no “informant” and I never said anything about whether anyone has changed or not. If you got that from one of the links, then it is that place you need to ask about it. Grow up. No one has said anything horrible about either killer. But I, the blog owner, am upset that you did not even bother to mention Elizabeth and she is the one that needs to be remembered here. My focus is on the victim. If you can’t talk about her and a memory of her, then don’t bother.

      • I understand and apologize for any insensativity or disrespect towards the gardner family that may have come with my post. My response was actually directed at the previous comment/poster and not for you or the actual blog. I understand if you decide to take it down as it is not in the appropriate place for that type of conversation but it would probably be only fair to remove the previous poster’s comment (by dagnabbit) as well considering Betty is not the focus of that discussion (by dagnabbit) and it is insulting to me and to others.

    • He should stay locked up for killing that poor defenceless old lady

  3. Just watched the story about the Betty Gardner murder on Unusual Suspects on ID channel. How sad. Was that animal released this month? I doubt James will ever feel sorry for what he done.

  4. Just watched the story myself on ID channel in Scotland. If he was black he would never have been released in the US. But I beleive that people can change and he was very young.

  5. He was released and I fear he had a relationship with someone close to me. I hope she does not end up like Mrs. Gardner. My prayers to all involved

    • “Julie”, I’m sure if you expressed your concern to Amanda directly she would tell you your fears are unnecessary. If you spend any time around the two of them your opinion might be different as you would see how unbelievably good he is to her and how much they love each other. It is a sharp contrast to the dangerous and immensely unhealthy relationship that brewed between him and Wendy and which led to his involvement in Betty’s death.

  6. Justice was served. Both James and Wendy completed their sentence. In the end, James served 19 years. He was sentenced as a minor but this is nearly the time he would have received if sentenced as as adult because of parole rejections (for reasons that the Supreme Court later determined were unjust). Wendy served only 10 years.
    James was evaluated on 4 separate occasions by psychiatrists prior to his release, as well as once after, to ensure he was not mentally ill (including sociopathic) and for risk assessment. He was found to be a very low risk for recidivism (relapse into criminal behavior) and they determined he is not suffering from any mental illness and therefore deemed him fit for release into society.
    Now he is living his life happily and as fully and peacefully as he can with his fiancé, the love of his life. His family and friends comprise the strongest support system he could have hoped for.
    James was young when this horrific event transpired. Though he wishes, more than anything, he could reverse his actions that resulted in Betty’s death, it is not humanly possible. Still, he has matured considerably over 20 years’ time. James is exceptionally kind, intelligent and a decent person that should not be hated or feared because of what happened 20 years ago. He has paid and continues to pay the price for that mistake.

    • Lovelylady,

      While that is all good, what about Betty Gardner? You spoke not one word about her and my blog focuses on the victim. I am glad he is remorseful, so I am sure he has told Betty’s family that. I hope he does volunteer work with victims to really show that work. If he is truly remorseful, he will not hide from what he did, but rather, he will share it with others.

      • As for Betty, may she rest in peace. Her life was cut short and she deserved a more time on this earth. She deserved to have more time with her family and they deserved to not have to go through what went through with her loss and the murder trials. There isn’t anything I or anyone else can say to make it better. Might I add, just because I know and love one of the perpetrators does not make my condolences any less sincere.
        I have no updates on Betty and I cannot contribute any information to what you have posted here about her specifically.
        You include information regarding the defendants, do you not? A brief statement of what happened to them and links to articles about them and what happened to them. I am only adding to your information what I know about one of the them, specifically James. He, as a direct order of the parole board, cannot have any contact with the victim’s family and that includes third-party contact. So a direct apology would be out of the question. I am sure the Gardner family would have it no other way.
        It is equally as tragic that two kids made the decision to end her life, which resulted in them losing a significant period of their lives. They deprived themselves of a normal adulthood among other things in choosing to do so. I am not saying you should pity them but I would hope you would agree it is a shame. Are they not worth discussing? Other people here think so.
        It’s interesting that of the 6 people that commented on this post, none of them (myself included) had anything to say about Betty. However, you chose to single me out. Why is that? If you don’t want my opinion up here with everyone else’s, just delete it. Stop trying to browbeat me over it.

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