Kevin Sweat slaughtered two girls and his finance, then attacked his lawyer with a razor blade. Why?
Sometimes you can just tell when two people are in love.
That certainly seemed the case for Kevin Sweat and his 23-year-old fiancee Ashley Taylor.
Together four years, they lived together in Henryetta, Oklahoma.
According to family, Sweat was always giving Taylor cuddles, calling her ‘sweetie’.
And, on 15 July 2011, Ashley told her parents they were eloping to Louisiana to get married on the 29th.
But Ashley was never seen again.
When Sweat eventually returned alone, Ashley’s family filed a missing- person report.
Sweat was then arrested.
He claimed he and Ashley had argued after leaving home, and she’d got out of the car.
In August, police found charred ashes containing bone fragments on Sweat’s dad’s farm. Also among the ashes were Ashley’s glasses and a diamond ring.
Sweat was charged with her murder.
Meanwhile, police made another important discovery.
A gun receipt and shell casings linked to the unsolved murders of two girls back in 2008.
Friends Taylor Placker, 13, and Skyla Whitaker, 11, had been shot dead as they walked along a dirt road near Weleetka, Oklahoma.
Sweat eventually admitted to killing all three, reportedly saying he’d cut Ashley’s jugular.
In October 2014, Sweat, 28, was jailed for life.
So what turned Kevin Sweat into a monster?
Born to Deborah and Curtis, little is known about Kevin’s early life. His mother described her son as ‘never having been violent as an adult or child.’
A ‘mama’s boy’.
Eventually his parents divorced – and, that same year, his eldest brother died.
Psychological reports suggested Sweat had had a troubled childhood, and struggled to accept reality. This certainly seemed to be the case when he was first questioned about the deaths of Taylor and Skyla.
Sweat said he’d been driving when he saw ‘two monsters’ come at him. That he ‘panicked’, grabbed his gun from the glove box and shot the ‘monsters’.
He said mental problems and demonic possession made him do it.
In August 2012, Sweat pleaded not guilty to killing Ashley. However, he was ordered to stand trial for all three murders.
Then in January 2014, a forensic psychologist said that tests showed problems with the way Sweat perceived or processed information.
‘Things get jumbled up in his brain,’ the expert told the court.
That May, Kevin Sweat wrote to TV station Fox 25. He said his lawyers had told him he could not discuss the ‘mess’ he was in.
Criminologist Dr Shawna Cleary studied the letter.
‘My first impression is you’ve got someone who is extremely narcissistic, who is obsessing over his case and obsessing about ways he can get out of the trouble that he’s in,’ she said.
Yet, he must have realised he wasn’t going to get out of trouble because, in July 2014, Sweat waived his right to a jury trial in exchange for prosecutors not seeking the death penalty. It meant his fate would be determined by a judge.
Later that month, he admitted the three murders in exchange for a chance to talk to the FBI.
Then came the biggest insight into what motivated Kevin Sweat to kill.
Prosecutors revealed evidence that Sweat blamed the Placker family for his brother’s death.
He claimed his brother Brian had died of a drug overdose back in 2007, from bad drugs sold to him by the Placker family.
So had Sweat killed Taylor Placker and her friend for revenge? It seemed so.
As for Ashley?
Had she found out about the murders and needed silencing?
Phil Cross, a reporter at Fox 25 who wrote to Kevin Sweat in prison, said Sweat had hinted several times about crimes and problems from his past.
What was he referring to?
It’s a secret Sweat may take to the grave.
In October 2014, Kevin Sweat was given three life sentences without parole.
His sentence was delayed by about an hour because he attacked his lawyer with a razor blade.
The following June, he argued he should be able to withdraw his guilty pleas because he didn’t fully understand the consequences of pleading guilty.
As yet, the state hasn’t issued a reply to the appeal.