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October 6th, 2009
02:50 PM ET

Murder in a small town

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A Mont Vernon police officer moves a barricade before leaving the scene of the homicide on Monday.
A Mont Vernon police officer moves a barricade before leaving the scene of the homicide on Monday.

Gabriel Falcon
AC360° Writer

A small, rural town in the hills of New Hampshire was jolted by a deadly home invasion over the weekend that left a mother dead and her young daughter severely injured.

“This type of murder does not happen very often,” New Hampshire Senior Assistant Attorney General Will Delker told CNN. “This is something out of the ordinary.”

Four teenage boys have been charged in connection with the incident that occurred early Sunday morning on an isolated, dirt road in Mont Vernon, a town with a population of around 2,000.

In a media release, the New Hampshire Department of Justice identified the homicide victim as 42-year-old Kimberly Cates. The medical examiner determined that she died from “multiple sharp injuries to the head, torso, left arm, and left leg.”

The victim’s 10-year-old daughter sustained serious knife injuries that required hours of surgery. “She’s still in the intensive care unit,” Delker said. “Her injuries weren’t life threatening, but you shouldn’t minimize the severities of the injuries she suffered.”

Delker said Kimberly Cates' husband was away on business at the time of the attack.

Cates was employed as a registered nurse at St. Joseph Hospital, in Nashua, New Hampshire. “She worked part time in our maternal and labor department and also in our emergency department,” said Sarah Ward, director of marketing and communications for the hospital. “The staff is pretty upset about it, they were pretty close to her.”

“The people up here aren’t used to this kind of thing,” said Don Himsel, Senior Photo Editor for the Nashua Telegraph.

“This never really happens.” Himsel also said violent crime is extremely rare in Mont Vernon. “I think we may have had one assault in town in the last 10 years.”

On Tuesday, the New Hampshire Department of Justice announced the arrests of the four teenagers accused of taking part in the crimes.

Steven Spader, 17, and Christopher Gribble, 19, were charged with First Degree Murder, Attempted Murder, and Conspiracy to Commit First Degree Murder.

William Marks, 18, and Quinn Glover, 17, were charged with Burglary, Conspiracy to Commit Burglary, and Armed Robbery.

Delker, who described the case as being in its earliest stages, told CNN prosecutors evaluate in the future whether new or additional charges will be brought or upgraded.

A probable cause hearing for the defendants will be held on October 20.

Follow Gabe on Twitter @cnnfalcon.

For more crime coverage go to cnn.com/crime.


Filed under: Crime & Punishment • Gabe Falcon
soundoff (15 Responses)
  1. Amused

    It's funny how everyone says young people are becoming more violent. When my grandfather was growing up, the kids were more violent to each other on a regular basis than they are now. If anything, young people have changed the ways in which they are violent, going from regular violent acts to rare acts of more extreme violence.

    October 6, 2009 at 8:21 pm |
  2. mc

    uh what the hell? video games are definetly not to blame. i go to school with these 2 boys and it's so disturbing that i've attended school with them for 10 plus years. they have some serious issues and it far worse then to blame it on video games...

    October 6, 2009 at 8:10 pm |
  3. NHChick

    I live in NH and unfortunately, there is far more violent crime and sex offenders here then anyone thinks. And, to add my two cents in, the reason that teenagers are committing crimes like this is because their parents give them too much freedom and too many "choices" from when they are toddlers. Sadly, "time out" has been the discipline of choice for the modern upper middle class family. "Time out" just doesn't have the same effect as a good ole fashioned smack on the behind.

    October 6, 2009 at 8:01 pm |
  4. Older Jer

    May God have mercy on the family and loved ones.

    I am saddened by the violence and lawlessness of so many today. Where is the fear of God?

    May those who are guilty be caught, prosecuted, and put away from hurting others ever again; after that, may they repent, and may God have mercy on them too.

    October 6, 2009 at 6:52 pm |
  5. Tucker

    I can't tell you how nauseated this makes me. To think that four teenagers are capable of such a sickening crime. That little girl will probably NEVER feel safe again. These boys should be put down – they will never be 'normal' humans again.

    October 6, 2009 at 6:28 pm |
  6. jason

    Too many violent video games and movies have made our children immune to the violence.It is looked at as the norm. They are too comfortable with it.

    October 6, 2009 at 5:54 pm |
  7. Charles U. Odiase

    Why are people so surprised this happened in New Hampshire. The bottom line is that American society is getting more violent by the day. More creative ways need to be explored to determine what can be done with today's teenagers. A lot of them are simply out of control.

    October 6, 2009 at 5:48 pm |
  8. cabo30

    Burglary??? That's all???

    October 6, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  9. Adam

    richp, i agree with you. I can believe anyone would do something like this. Men do not kill each other for fun or sport. This is absoultly revolting. I hope they all get life sentences (note the 's' on sentences)

    October 6, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  10. linda

    To Don Himsel, who said"The people up here aren’t used to this kind of thing,” and to D. Taylor who said "Its hard to believe that a horrible crime such as this took place in New Hampshire". NO MATER WHICH STATE OR TOWN YOU LIVE IN, HOW COULD YOU GET USED TO any of these senseless killings...I live in Washington state in a small town and I would be astounded if this were to happen in MY town! I think when something like this hits so close to home, we all can't believe that it could actually happen in our surroundings. In fact its happening all over, in small towns, big towns, in the country, in the city, in pretty little hamlets, in grimey back streets in big cities and now even in New Hampshire....

    October 6, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  11. richp

    Disgusting, Those are not 'teenagers' they are not even human anymore, more like rabid animals that deserve the same treatment.

    October 6, 2009 at 4:34 pm |
  12. Patrick Kenge

    OMG, Where did we go wrong with kids???

    October 6, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  13. Cartavious Lockhart

    I want to know what would make four teenage boys do some thing like that. What really shocked me was that the boys also tried to murder a ten year old girl. I’m glad that they have found the people in connection with the crime. I didn’t think anything like that would happen in a small town in New Hampshire. The four boys should get a long time in jail for killing some ones mother and wife.

    October 6, 2009 at 4:28 pm |
  14. lea cheatham

    They were all together in the commision of a felony (armed Robery), they should all be charged with with Murder. I am not quite getting the exception, it does not make sense. How horrible for that child and her family. People who have such little regard for someones life do not deserve to have one of their own.

    October 6, 2009 at 4:25 pm |
  15. DeMarques Taylor

    It is sad to see that such a vicous crime took place.Its hard to believe that a horrible crime such as this took place in New Hampshire. I am astounded to hear that arrests were made. I am even more suprised that teenagers were the cause of this homicide. I truly hope they get a long time in jail for their horrifying act.

    October 6, 2009 at 3:34 pm |