Hey, y’all! It’s Halloween and I wanted to write a blog about a murder that occurred on Halloween. I immediately found the case of Karl Jackson who was murdered after confronting a teenager who had egged his car. This led me down a rabbit hole of the actual increase in crime rates on Halloween and a lot more murders being committed because of an egged car than I would have ever expected. Today’s blog may be a little on the short side because I’ve had a hellacious week. This is the story of the murder of Karl Jackson.
On Halloween 1998 Karl Jackson who was 21 had taken his girlfriend and her nine-year-old son to a children’s Halloween party in the Bronx. According to the New York Times, Karl wasn’t really a fan of Halloween. In fact, he thought it was a pretty dangerous holiday, what with all the spooky costumes and late-night shenanigans. But he wanted to make his girlfriend and her son happy, so he agreed to go with them to the party.
After an enjoyable evening at the party, Karl was driving home when a group of rowdy teenagers decided to cause some trouble. They hurled eggs at Karl’s car, leaving a messy splatter all over the windshield. Shocked and upset by this sudden act of vandalism, Karl made the decision to confront the teenagers in order to address their unruly behavior.
As Karl approached the teenagers, the situation became increasingly tense. Unfortunately, the details of what happened next are somewhat unclear due to discrepancies in the available sources. A New York Times article from 2010 reported that one of the teenagers, perhaps feeling threatened or cornered, brandished a gun on the scene during the confrontation. The presence of the weapon understandably escalated the situation further, putting Karl in a dangerous position.
On the other hand, an earlier article from 1998 offers a slightly different account of the events that transpired. According to this version, Karl decided to leave the scene after confronting the teenagers. However, the teenagers were not ready to let the matter rest. They followed Karl, and at some point during this pursuit, a gunshot was fired in Karl’s direction.
Regardless of which version of the story is accurate, it is evident that the incident took a perilous turn. It serves as a reminder that even seemingly harmless pranks can lead to unpredictable and potentially dangerous outcomes.
Whatever the case, the ending was the same: tragedy. Karl was dead on the scene at 11:15. Karl was a computer programmer with his whole life ahead of him and was killed over a Halloween prank.
His killer was Curtis Sterling, who was only 17 at the time. Tragedy all around.
Trick or treat?
In 2010, at least 24 people in New York City had been injured or killed because of a confrontation over eggs being thrown. Most of these victims were teenagers and young men.
Sometimes, the kids throwing the eggs end up dead, but sometimes the confronter is the one who is killed like in the case of Karl Jackson.
According to CBS News, violent crime rate is around 50 percent higher on Halloween than any other day of the year.
Why is that the case? I’m thinking it has something to do with anonymity. Being disguised can make a person less inhibited because they don’t fear the consequences. It’s almost a real Purge. There’s a lot of anonymous commenters on the internet.
Before you let your teenagers leave the house with a carton of eggs this year, think about what could happen. Plus eggs are so expensive now. I couldn’t afford to go egging.