Young love can be an intense thing, and it can get even more intense when murder is thrown into the mix. Such is the case in the tale of Jens Soering and Elizabeth Haysom. The pair had a somewhat toxic relationship, but when Elizabeth's parents interfered, they wound up dead in March of 1985. The couple fled, and when they were caught Jens confessed to the murders. It might have all ended there, but the thing is that the evidence doesn't exactly point to Jens. Was Jens Soering framed for murdering his girlfriend's parents?
The Elizabeth Haysom murder controversy has been going on since Jen's life sentence was announced. What makes it so compelling is that evidence is continually piling up that what really happened is this girl killed her parents and framed her boyfriend afterwards. It wouldn't be the first time someone was falsely found guilty. But is it true? Is Jens guilty? Or has he been played from the start?
We don't know for sure, but it's hard to deny that the whole story is fascinating. With a request for a pardon already in the water, who can guess what the next chapter of Jens Soering's life may hold?
Jens Confessed To The Murders
On Jens's part, he now says he never suspected that Elizabeth would actually kill her parents, but when he was first brought in he told a different story. The police interrogated him for 16 hours over four days, and during that time Jens began to confess to the murders. Even as he did, something seemed strange. He said he had killed them in anger after dinner had gone awry, but he got certain details wrong. He identified what they were wearing incorrectly, and his timeline seemed off. Later, experts would say that this confession was unreliable.
He later said that he only confessed because he dearly loved Elizabeth, and wanted to make sure she did not get sentenced to the electric chair, which was how people were executed in Virginia. However, by the time he recanted, the damage had been done. Police and eventually the court became convinced he was guilty of the murders, and attention quickly turned from Elizabeth to him.
There Was A Lot Of Strange Evidence That Made No Sense
The trial itself was full of strange instances of evidence barely being touched on, or not brought up at all. Jens originally thought that, as the son of a German diplomat, he'd be sent back to Germany and tried there, and that he might serve time in a juvenile detention center. Instead, he was tried for first degree murder, for the deaths of both her parents.
During the trial he was never called to the witness stand. When a bloody sock print was brought up as a potential piece of evidence no experts came up to dispute it. There were pieces of evidence that indicated Jens was not the one in the house, but they were never presented. And, of course, Elizabeth came forward to openly accuse Jens of murder. She said that she'd never thought he'd actually go through with killing, and that she knew he had performed this act for her. At the time she didn't even mention the sexual abuse, instead pointing the finger directly at Jens. By the end of it, only this testimony and the bloody sock print were what the jury based their decision on.
Elizabeth May Have Framed Jens For Everything
This is where things start to get complicated. Although no real evidence of this was presented at the trial, there is a suggestion that Elizabeth did everything on her own. Jens claimed that he had come home one day to find Elizabeth crying in bed. She claimed that she had killed her parents, and that drugs had made her do it. She explained that she would surely be executed for the murders, and made Jens promise that, if they were caught, he would take the blame in order for her to stay alive.
When they were captured she initially confessed to murder, but the moment Jens also confessed she was quick to turn on him and claim he was the one responsible. Elizabeth had been known to be manipulative in the past, and had a history of using men just for her own amusement or vengeance. She was also extraordinarily angry at her parents, and had repeatedly wished for their deaths. Given all this, Jens has suggested on several occasions that it was always Elizabeth's intent to frame him for her parents' murders.
Jens Was Sentenced To Life In Prison
Even with evidence being inconsistent and limited, the jury found it was enough to make a decision on both Elizabeth and Jens. For Elizabeth's part, she was found guilty on two counts of accessory to murder, for which she was sentenced in 1987. She was given a 90 year sentence, which she is still serving out, despite numerous attempts at parole. During her time behind bars, she has repeatedly changed her story, even saying there was a third person involved in the crime. She has never since her initial confession, however, claimed she was the one who killed her parents.
Things went far worse for Jens Soering. He was found guilty on two counts of first degree murder, and given the sentence of serving out two life sentences simultaneously. Since being sent to prison he has never stopped trying to appeal his case. And, as it turns out, he might have good reason for doing so.