The Wesson Family
March 12, 2004
Jeva Wesson
2003 - 2004
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Aviv Wesson
1997 - 2004
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Sedona Vadra Wesson
2002 - 2004
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Lilabelle Wesson
1996 - 2004
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Marshey Wesson
2003 - 2004
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Ethan Wesson
2000 - 2004
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Johnathon Wesson
1997 - 2004
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Elizabeth Wesson
1988 - 2004
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Sebhrenna Wesson
1979 - 2004
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Note: Elizabeth and Sebhrenna are not children and are not pictured above, but they were killed the same day as all of the Wesson children.

When police arrived at a home in Fresno, California, they expected they would find a family in the middle of some kind of a custody battle. What they found instead were some women as well as those supporting them, trying to force people in the little blue house to give them their children and the woman who lived in the home, refusing to give the children up. In the middle of all the screaming and shouting was a man, Marcus Delon Wesson. Police made the mistake of believing that this man was there as a peacemaker. Insults turned into a physical fight and at that moment, Marcus went back into the house and slammed the door.

Marcus is the son of Benjamin Wesson who was reported to have been an alcoholic who was abusive to his son in a sexual way and Carrie Wesson who was reported to be a religious woman. Reports say that Marcus was raised to> be what he became, by his parents. Marcus dropped out of high school and joined the Army. Upon his return from the Army, he was in contact with a friend, Rose Solorio, who lives in San Jose, was married and had eight children. At some point, Rose left her husband and moved in with Marcus who was at least 13 years younger than he was.

Marcus was unemployed and even so, Rose had a baby boy in 1971 and he was the father.  The family lived off of welfare and moved often. During this time, Marcus decided that he wanted to Mary Rose's daughter, Elizabeth. Rose didn't seem to have a problem with that. Elizabeth was actually courted by Marcus and Rose didn't care. Marcus had convinced the two that God wanted Elizabeth to be his wife and in 1974, at the age of only 14 years old, Elizabeth was married to Marcus in a ceremony that he performed himself. At the age of 14 years old, Elizabeth was pregnant by Marcus and the two would have five boys and four girls.

Still unemployed, in 1989, Marcus and Rose took in the children of Rosemary, Elizabeth's sister, that meant seven more children would be living in the home where the only income was welfare and moving was a common thing. The family had lived in tents, trailers and boats and at times, the children would be digging in trash cans for food while Marcus always had money to buy fast food for himself. There were 16 children living in the home, where ever the home was at any given time. Marcus had Elizabeth convinced that he could not go to work since they were receiving welfare.

If any of the children dared to disobey, not do their home work or learn their Bible lessons, Marcus would hit them with a stick wrapped with duct tape or a small bat. The Wesson children had no friends and were rarely allowed to leave their home and if they came into contact with any other people, they didn't speak which lead people to believe they were very well behaved, though the real problem was that none of them knew how to be social at all. These children had been brainwashed from the youngest of age and believed everything that Marcus told them. Marcus told> the children that he was Jesus Christ and the believed him. At one point, Marcus made the boys and girls stay away from each other because he didn't want them to develop any sexual feelings for their siblings. That seems kind of odd considering he married his own step-daughter and she had his children.



At one point, Marcus started to molest the girls who were aged eight and over. Marcus told them that this was how a father showed his love for his children. Marcus read passages from the Bible about men who had more than one wife:

"God wants a man to have more than one wife"

Marcus would marry his children and nieces in a ceremony he himself performed in their bedroom. In the ceremony, the child would place her hand on the Bible and Marcus would put his hand over hers and she would say her vows that always ended with "I do". Each of the children was taught that she should fight for the affection of Marcus and the group of children grew jealous over time, of the time he spent with their siblings and cousins. When they became teenagers, the girls were not allowed to talk to boys and were forbidden from dating. Even when a brother asked them why they didn't date, they would tell him they were not into it at that time. Marcus became obsessed with David Koresh and he and his family watched the news about what happened:

"This is how the world is attacking God's people. This man is just like me. He is making children
for the lord. That's what we should be doing, making children for the lord"
Marcus Wesson


Marcus kept having children with his daughters and nieces, though he had originally said he only wanted to have one with each of them. During this time, Ruby was beaten for flirting with boys and would run away from home several times only to return to be with her daughter. At the age of 22, she left for good and was later married. Sofina had also left and both of these women finally knew, for the first time in their lives, what it was like to live as a normal person. Ruby and Sofina were both angry that Marcus continued to have sex with their sisters and cousins and that babies were still being born to them. Together, they decided to go to the home on Hammond Ave. and take their children.



Knowing they were probably facing a long battle, the sisters knew that Marcus had told them that if Child Services or any other Government agency tried to break up the family, each of the children had been told they had to kill their own children and then themselves. Of course Marcus would be spared so that he could explain why the family had decided to act the way they did. Marcus even had monthly meetings to discuss the plan and make sure that each of the children knew to shoot a gun and kill someone. In the home were 12 mahogany coffins that Marcus had bought at an antiques store. It was reported that they coffins might be connected to Marcus's obsession with vampires. Movies about vampires were often watched by the family and Marcus even told the family that Jesus had been a vampire. The antique shop owner said that the children had loaded the coffins into a school bus after Marcus bought them.

Ruby and Sofina went to their former home at about 2:00 p.m. on March 12, 2004 and they brought some people who would help them. Both women made it clear they had come to take their children home with them. Sofina went into the home and found he son, who was seven years old, took him by the hand and was going to leave when her sister Rosa took the boy from her and forced him into a room where the other children were. Solorio would never see her son alive, again. Sofina was forced out the door and Marcus stood in the door and would not allow her to reenter the house calling her and Ruby names and telling them to leave.

At about 2:30 the police showed up and one of them could hear a baby crying as he talked to Marcus. Since they were not allowed to enter without a warrant and Marcus would not let them in, there wasn't much that could be done. Marcus convinced them that he would work with the women to come a peaceful resolution to the problem, then he ran inside unexpectedly and clammed the door:



"He's going to hurt them"
Ruby and Solorio



The police were informed that Maracus had a 22 caliber gun in the house and the swat team was called. Someone< said they heard gunshots from inside the house, though the police denied hearing it themselves. Several neighbors would later say that the shots were clearly heard including one who lived a few houses away at that point she ran to her door and heard someone screaming "Not my babies! Not my babies!". The SWAT team did not arrive in time to save the lives of the children and when Marcus appeared in the door, he was covered in blood. Marcus told police to use three sets of handcuffs for his thick wrists. Police no longer needed a warrant and they entered the home calling the names of the children. The children were found in a bedroom in a pile, stacked youngest to oldest and on top was Sebhrenah with a 22 caliber gun under her arm. Though police did an extensive search, there were no survivors. It was reported that the day was the most traumatic that these officers had ever faced and that many of
them would entering counseling.

 
Removing one of the victims from the home.


Removing evidence from the home.

Marcus Wesson was arrested and charged with nine counts of murder and held on $9 million bail. After DNA tests came back, it was confirmed that Marcus was the father of all of the victims and his added to the charges of murder were 14 charges of sexual abuse. Marcus plead not guilty to all of the charges against him. His wife, Elizabeth, one of his daughters and a niece stood by him and said that he had not done anything wrong and that he was a wonderful husband and father? Excuse me but WHAT THE FRICK?

Carrie Wesson, his mother was not so supportive:

"If Marcus is guilty, I would really feel disappointed in my country if it didn't make him face the penalty.
But I'm a Biblical person too and I don't believe in capital punishment, what I would like for Marcus to
do is sit in prison and think about he's done and read the Bible"

REALLY? Again I say WHAT THE FRICK? This from a woman who lived with a man who sexually abused her son? Carrie and Benjamin should be in jail for what they did to this man. Don't get me wrong, Marcus is a sick man who did sick, disgusting things and in the end killed these innocent children. He deserves to rot in prison for what he did. I just also believe that his parents should pay for what happened to him while he lived with them. Sit in prison and think about what he did? He has no conscience to be spoken of. Sitting in prison would be hard on him, but only because he wouldn't have any little girls to rape and control.

In June of 2005, the case went trial. Marcus's lawyers said that Sebhrenah had shot the children and shot herself and that she had enjoyed playing Army even to the extent that she painted her face in camouflage colors. Experts said that Sebhrenah had also shot her sister Elizabeth and that the two sisters had died least an hour after the others. Prosecutors said that even though is fingerprints were not on the weapon that was used to kill his children, Marcus had raised his family to kill each other and to be killed:

"In this family, he was Christ himself, the ultimate authority figure who determined life and death.
But for his suicide pact, for his teachings, none of this would have happened"
Lisa Gamoian - Prosecutor

Rosa Solario, who was 23 and had two children, Ethan 4 years old and Sedona 1 year old, who died that day, wore her wedding band in court as she talked of how she still considered Marcus to be her husband:

"I do love Marcus a lot. I understand what he did and everything. But at the same time, it's just
that to me, he's my father and I do not want to be responsible for putting him away. I just don't feel
it's right for to do it"

Rosa also told the court that the reason for buying the caskets was for a renovation project Marcus has planned and without blinking or changing her expression she said they could also be used as beds in a pinch.


One of the mahogany coffins being removed from the home.


Elizabeth denied in court that she had known about sexual abuse going on in the house. I'm sorry, I know these women and children were brainwashed within an inch of their lives, but this woman needs seriously mental health, all of the survivors of this family do:

"How can I protect them if they didn't tell me? They never told me anything"

When she saw that the others were pregnant, she claims that since her own mother had given birth to children with several different fathers and her sister the same way, she never asked about the fathers of the children's children, considering it to be rude and mean to ask. Again I say, WTF? He started having sex with her when she was a child, she saw babies being born all over the place, yet no other men around, I say she's lying to protect herself and she needs to go to prison for a long time. During her questioning, Elizabeth kept looking at Marcus as though she was wanting him to tell her what to do, she broke down several times and had to take breaks. Elizabeth said that since their family had become public, she was the object of ridicule and her family had been torn apart and in addition to that, she had been forced to sleep in her car at time.

The boys who had been in the home and had left home before the murders, were also in court. Marcus Wesson Jr., who was 22 years old at the time, said that he had been surprised when the girls who were not allowed to date, were pregnant and he was told they were artificially inseminated. Marcus thought that it was odd and said it was not right when he learned that is father had been the father of their children, he said he didn't want that kind of thing happening. Adrian Wesson, 39 at the time, also found it odd since all of the children born looked like his father and had seemed to inherit the fathers pug nose. Dorian, who was 30 years old, said that his father was insane since he thought he was Jesus Christ and believed in vampires though he said his father was very intelligent.

After deliberating for about two days, the jury found Marcus Wesson guilty of all nine counts of first degree murder as well as the 14 counts of raping and molesting the children. Jurors had a tough time with the evidence and they eventually decided that Marcus had been the killer of some of the children. When the verdict was read, the Wesson family members who were there, stifled sobs, though Marcus didn't make a sound. Marcus had lost quite a bit of weight and wore the same shirt throughout the entire trial. The Wesson family left the courthouse and refused to be interviewed at all about the verdict.

One of the jurors commented:

"It was hard, we had a lot of sleepless nights. It was a lot of work, but this is closure for us, to feel
we've done our civic duty"
Alex Florez

A month after the verdict came in, Superior Court Judge R.L. Putnam went with the recommendation of the jury for the death penalty. Marcus was also sentenced to 102 years in prison for the sexual molestation charges. Kiani Wesson defended her father saying that  Ruby and Sofina were to blame for what happened because they should never have come for their children and tried to break up the family:

"I am proud of all of my family, of the way we were raised"

I hope this woman gets help to bring her around to the way the world REALLY is. Brainwashing is a terrible thing and she is a danger to others as long as she feels there was nothing wrong with the way she was raised, they all are.

Marcus's lawyers asked the judge for a new trial or to reduce his sentence to life in prison and both requests were denied and said:

"The continued love of him by some family members, is the only leniency Wesson can expect"



Neighbors created a memorial for the children.

In February of 2006, Elizabeth asked the court to return items that were taken from the home. Items she was asking for included books, video tapes, DVDs, photo albums and the family bus:

"Imagine if somebody came to your house, took everything you owned and basically sat it in a locker
somewhere and said "you can't have this back""
Douglas Foster - Elizabeth's Lawyer

With Marcus's case on appeal, some of the items could be used as evidence. The Judge in the case denied her request saying that she was not specific in naming which items she wanted and that she has not proven that she is the owner of any of the items:

"We understand why in these kind of cases, death penalty cases, the judge wants to be cautious
about releasing evidence"
Douglas Foster

Douglas Foster said that Elizabeth is not a rich woman and she needs the items so she can try to sell them he added that some of these items have sentimental value. Elizabeth mostly tries to stay out of the spotlight, however she is trying, not for the firs time, to get these items back:

"She's doing as well as can be expected. She doesn't like all the attention on her, obviously, and
she wants
to put this to bed and go about living the rest of her life"

In July of 2011 court was in session for the first time in the appeal that was granted to Marcus Wesson. Marcus was not in court for the hearing, he was still sitting on death row. The case was being looked at during a time when California legislators were going to allow voters to decide if the death penalty should be an option in California. Lawyers for Marcus say that he is an example of money being wasted on the death penalty. Mark Cutler is a man who has represented many death row cases by making sure that nothing was done improperly in the case and he says that the appeals will take years and that since Marcus is now 64 years old, he'll never see the death penalty:

"I can't see any possibility in the world that Marcus will be executed. He will die a natural death long
before his case is over. Most people's reaction is always that there's go to be some way to make this
faster, but there really isn't"

Police Chief, Jerry Dyer, does not agree with Mark Cutler:

"Marcus Wesson is the very reason we should have a death penalty. Life in prison for him would be
an injustice to his nine children he killed"

"What happened in that case was so bad, I agree, if it was ever a proper time for the death penalty,
it would e that particular case"
Tony Capozzi - Legal Analyst

Death occurred in the state of California

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