2007 Carnation murders

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Carnation massacre
Location Near Carnation, Washington
Date December 24, 2007
Attack type
  • .357-caliber Magnum handgun
  • automatic pistol
Deaths 6
  • Michele Kristen Anderson
  • Joseph Thomas McEnroe
Motive Financial dispute

The Carnation murders were a mass murder that occurred on December 24, 2007, near Carnation, Washington, a small rural town 25 miles east of Seattle. The murders took place in the home of Wayne Scott Anderson and Judy Anderson.


Six people were killed:[1]

  • Wayne Scott Anderson, 60, a Boeing engineer and husband of Judy Anderson
  • Judy Anderson, 61, postal worker, and wife of Wayne Scott Anderson
  • Scott Anderson, 32, son of Wayne and Judy
  • Erica Anderson, 32, wife of Scott
  • Olivia Anderson, 5-year-old daughter of Scott and Erica
  • Nathan Anderson, 3-year-old son of Scott and Erica


According to testimony, Joseph Thomas McEnroe and Michele Kristen Anderson armed themselves and drove their pickup to the home of her parents, Wayne and Judy Anderson, on the afternoon of Dec. 24, 2007. Christine M. Sarteschi, author of Mass and Serial Murder, described McEnroe and Anderson living in a trailer on Anderson's parents' property.[2]

Once inside, McEnroe distracted Judy Anderson, who was wrapping Christmas gifts, while Michele shot her father. After Michele's gun jammed, McEnroe then killed Wayne and Judy Anderson.[2]

The two then hid the bodies and carefully cleaned the home and waited for Michele Anderson's older brother, Scott, his wife, Erica, both 32, and their two young children.[2]

Once the family arrived, Michele Anderson shot her brother.[2] McEnroe and Anderson then shot Erica Anderson and McEnroe shot the children, 5-year-old Olivia and 3-year-old Nathan, at request of Anderson because they didn't want witnesses and said the children would be scarred for life having seen the parents killed.

The bodies were discovered two days later when a co-worker of Judy Anderson's went to the home to see why she was absent from work. While King County detectives were at the property, McEnroe and Michele Anderson drove up and were questioned and arrested.

Prosecutors told jurors the motive for the killings was money and Anderson's belief she had been slighted and mistreated by her parents and brother.[2]

Sarteschi described McEnroe and Anderson meeting criteria for the classification "family annihilators", and described their crimes as instances of "familicide".[2]


Arrested and indicted as the perpetrators of the killings were Michele Kristen Anderson and her boyfriend, Joseph Thomas McEnroe, both aged 29.[3] They were each charged with six counts of first-degree murder.[4] Michelle is the younger sister of Scott and daughter of Wayne and Judy. Investigators have not pinpointed a motive for the slayings, but believe that a dispute over money may have led to the killings. The suspects waived their right to appear in court. Court papers say they have admitted the killing.[5]

Michele fired the first shot at her father, but missed.[6]

Trial and sentencing[edit]

McEnroe confessed to the murders in January 2014, in an effort to avoid execution.[1] On December 19, 2014, a 16-member jury was selected to hear the case against McEnroe.[7] On March 25, 2015, the jury found Joseph McEnroe guilty of aggravated first-degree murder on all six counts. On May 13, 2015, Joseph McEnroe was sentenced to life in prison, avoiding the death penalty. On March 4, 2016, Michele Anderson was found guilty of six counts of aggravated first-degree murder. She was sentenced to life imprisonment in April 2016.[8]


  1. ^ a b Pulkkinen, Levi (January 9, 2014). "Man admits to Carnation killings in bid to dodge death sentence". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Retrieved December 19, 2014.
  2. ^ a b c d e f Christine M. Sarteschi (2016-08-18). Mass and Serial Murder in America. Springer publisher. pp. 39–40. ISBN 9783319442815. Retrieved 2017-04-21.
  3. ^ Roe, Amy; Krishnan, Sonia; Siderius, Christina (December 27, 2007). "Suspect in Carnation slayings is related to victims, police say". Seattle Times.
  4. ^ Associated Press (December 29, 2007). "Washington Family Murder Suspect Apologized, Then Shot Kids to Death". Fox News Channel. Retrieved December 19, 2014.
  5. ^ "Cops: Pair admitted killings; bail denied: Court Papers" (PDF). Seattle P.I. December 26, 2007.
  6. ^ Gutierrez, Scott (December 28, 2007). "Carnation suspects tell officers of victims' frantic, final moments". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Retrieved December 19, 2014.
  7. ^ Green, Sara Jean (December 19, 2014). "Jurors selected for first trial in 2007 Carnation killings". Seattle Times. Retrieved December 20, 2014.
  8. ^ Green, Sara Jean (April 21, 2016). "Michele Anderson sentenced to life for killing 6 in her family in Carnation". Seattle Times. Retrieved April 21, 2017.

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