Scott was a lovely boy – until his life took a dark turn which would end in murder...
Esther Fielding, 53, prided herself on being a good mum to her son, Scott Dyleski 16. She’d split from his dad when he was a baby
He’d been a lovely kid – bright, academic, sporty, in the Boy Scouts. But since starting college, he’d changed.
Except he’d already known tragedy in his young life. In 2003 his 18-year-old sister had died in a car crash. It hit him hard. The gentle loving little boy became withdrawn and sombre. Now Scott had dyed his hair black, and changed his image to fit his mood. He’d started identifying himself as a Goth.
He’d become immersed in his college artwork, forever doodling cryptic symbols. More worryingly, he’d become obsessed with serial killers.
Esther didn’t really approve of the black clothing, heavy jewellery, and eyeliner, but she said nothing. Sure he’d grow out of this phase. Never dreaming he would one day kill.
But Scott had other plans – a pressing desire to get rich. And he knew how to do it. He’d grow and sell dope. He’d use stolen credit cards to invest in special marijuana growing equipment. But weirdly, the equipment he’d ordered online didn’t turn up.
Scott suspected it had been delivered to their nearest neighbours, Daniel Horowitz, 51, and his wife, Pamela Vitale, 52. Their house was a mile by road, but there were lots of barely-trodden paths through the woods.
On October 15th 2005, Scott went up there hoping to get his stuff. But as he forced his way into the house he realised he wasn’t alone…
That evening, lawyer Daniel was surprised to see Pamela’s car on the drive when he got home. She’d told him she was going to the ballet with friends. He got out of his car and strode towards the house.
Then he saw it, a smear of blood on the door.
As he stepped inside he was met with a horror scene. Pamela lay on the floor, curled in the foetal position, blood pooled around her head. She was dead.
An autopsy later revealed she was slashed and clubbed to death with a length of wood. She’d been bludgeoned 39 times, had 26 head wounds, broken fingers and dislodged teeth. She’d also suffered a gaping knife wound to her abdomen, exposing her intestines, and a curious symbol had been carved into her back…
It didn’t take long for forensics to link Scott Dyleski to the crime scene. Before leaving the house he’d showered and drunk a glass of water. He also left a shoeprint, and his DNA on Pamela’s foot. His clothes stained with blood sealed his fate.
In 2006 he appeared before the Supreme Court in Martinez, California, charged with her murder. Pamela’s children begged him to tell them what happened to their mother. But he stayed silent.
Scott Dyleski was sentenced to life.
The former Boy Scout had changed. But this was more than just dark clothes and eyeliner…
He’d turned to the dark art of murder.