On Sunday July 6, 2003, Joanie Harper, her three children and her mother, Earnestine Harper, attended Sunday morning church service. It was the first time at church for six-week-old Marshall Harper. After the service they went to dine at the Black Angus before going home. They laid down to take a nap prior to returning to church for the evening service. Joanie and her children were in the rear bedroom while her mother was in another bedroom at the other end of the house.

An intruder, armed with a .22-caliber pistol, entered the house through the backyard and quietly moved to the rear bedroom.

On Tuesday morning family friend, Kelsey Spann, decided to check on her friend Joanie Harper and her family. She had not heard from her in several days and feared something was wrong. She went to a side door and inserted the key given to her by Joanie into the lock. Something was blocking the door keeping her from pushing it open. She walked around to the back of the house and tested the sliding glass door. It was unlocked, something that was very unusual. Kelsey entered the house and walked back to Joanie's bedroom.

A call was placed to 911 at 7 am. When the police arrived at 901 3rd st, they witnessed the horrific scene that Kelsey Spann had stumbled upon:


Joanie Harper - found face down on the bed. She had been shot three times in the head and twice in the arm. She had also been stabbed seven times.

Marshall Harper - the six-week old was found next to his mother under a pillow. He had been shot in the back.







Marques Harper - the four-year-old was found on the bed. He had a gunshot to the right side of his head and his eyes were open. The fingertips of one of his hands had been bitten to the bone. It was surmised that he had seen the killer and frightened he had stuck his
fingers in his mouth.








Lyndsey Harper - the two-year-old was found at the foot of her mother's bed. She had been shot in the back.













Ernestine Harper - found in the hallway. She had been shot twice in the face. The pistol she held when she confronted the intruder was found lying next to her body.







Almost immediately after the murders were discovered, suspicion fell on the estranged husband of Joanie Harper, Vincent E. Brothers. He was arrested nine months later and charged with five counts of first-degree murder.

Vincent Brothers was well-known and well-liked in the Bakersfield, CA community. He was respected as a mentor and a Christian family man. Brothers has a bachelor's degree from Norfolk State University and a master's degree in education from California State University - Bakersfield. He began his career as a substitute teacher in 1987 and eventually became the vice-principal of Fremont Elementary School in 1995.


The trial began on February 22, 2007. Brothers pleaded not guilty and claimed that he was in Ohio visiting his brother at the time of the murders. A brother he had not seen in ten years.

The Prosecution:

According to the prosecution, Brothers was an admitted adulterer, who never loved his family and used murder as a means to rid himself of the financial burden his family placed on him. They claimed that on July 2, 2003 he flew to Ohio to visit his brother in order to establish an alibi. When he touched down in Ohio he rented a Dodge Neon from Dollar Rent-A-Car. Detectives seized the rental car and alleged that the records proved that while the car was in his possession, Brothers put more that 5,400 miles on the car. More than enough mileage for him to have driven to Bakersfield and back. Prosecutors contended that Brother's drove approximately 4,500 miles in three days.

The radiator and air filter was taken to the Bohart Museum of Entomology for testing. Prof. Lynn Kimsey from the University of California - Davis took the stand and testified that she found several insect species in the car parts that were found only in the west and that the types of insects found indicated that the car had only been driven at night.


The prosecution introduced video evidence that proved that Vincent's brother, Melvin, used his credit card at Wal-mart. Melvin also admitted to forging his brother's signature and that he had no knowledge of his brother's whereabouts between July 4th through July 7th. Evidence showed that a call was placed to Brother's cell phone in Ohio around 4 pm on the day of the murder from the Harper residence.

The Defense:

The defense claimed that the extra marital affairs did not a murderer make and were being used to discredit his character. They claim that cell phone records placed Brother's in Ohio at the time of the murders and that he had also been involved in a minor traffic accident when a boy on a bike darted out in the street and ran into Brother's car. Also there was no video evidence of Brother's in over 100 gas stations and mini marts between Ohio and California. The murder weapon was never found. Brother's took the stand in his on defense and claimed that he had also spent time driving around with his other brother, Troy, which was why Melvin did not know where he was from the 4th through the 7th.

Troy Brother's was subpoenaed to testify for the defense but he disappeared. A $100,000 arrest warrant was issued. Columbus police tracked down the man who was actually involved in the traffic accident with the boy on the bike and he testified in court.

On May 15, 2007, the jury found Vincent E. Brothers guilty of five counts of first-degree murder. and on September 27, 2007 he was sentenced to death.

During the sentencing hearing the family members were allowed to read statements, including an emotion packed statement delivered by his only surviving child, Margaret Kern-Brothers. She said that she was resigning from the Brother's family and after she walked out of the courtroom she would be known as Margaret Kern. She went on to state "I am leaving my name with him. I don't have a father now. He is just a man handcuffed to a chair, looking straight ahead. He will never see me again, until it's time to die."



107 comments:

Anonymous said...

Troy Brother's was subpoenaed to testify for the defense but he disappeared. A $100,000 arrest warrant was issued.
This statement is so false. This ploy worked for the prosecution due to their persuasion of judge to allow it. Troy was told to stay in a hotel room on day he was suppose to take the stand. There is so many holes in this case.....there is no way Vincent should have been found guilty beyond unreasonable doubt. The killer is still on the loose.

FNE said...

As to his guilt or innocence I do not know. Unfortunately the only people who know the truth are dead. There are enough arguments on both sides but apparently the prosecution was more persuasive to the jury. If Brothers is guilty then he has to live with this for the rest of his life. If he is innocent then you are quite right in that it is a gross miscarriage of justice. In the end it will not replace the lives that were lost.

Anonymous said...

Like you said, the worst in this is the lives lost. I do believe some how, some way the killer will get what he deserves.

Anonymous said...

I dont think it was right for his only surviving child to make those comments while he was being sentenced. Was she making that statements because of the infamous Brothers last name or if she truly felt he committed the crime. I do believe that the amount of miles placed on the rental is pretty strong evidence.

Anonymous said...

I found a lot of reasonable doubt with the Prosecution's case. I hope this is not another innocent man that will be put to death for crimes he did not commit.

Anonymous said...

Based off of the show on Dateline, I do not think that he did this. On another forum comment it was stated that he was trying to avoid divorce. If this is so, why would he kill his children? Why would he kill his mother in law? There was not enough evidence presented to prove that he did it. Also they never looked at any other suspects. There are a lot of unanswered questions and a lot of holes in this case. I feel that due to the number of people killed in one place, it was a push to prosecute someone for these murders. It happens too often. On the other hand if he truly did this, he has to live with it for the rest of his life and answer for it.

Anonymous said...

HES A PIG

Anonymous said...

@"anonymous" above^^^^---It is not YOUR RIGHT to say what his daughter should or should not say. She has every right to say exactly what she said about this Vincent Brothers creature.

Anonymous said...

After watching Dateline... I do not see how a jury could convict... Evidently they have never driven across country..

Anonymous said...

I have cared for children abused and hurt badly by loved ones for over 30+ yrs. I am amazed the daughter had the strength and power to make a stand. She must have felt he was guilty and known things maybe the rest of the world doesn't know to make that strong of a stand. If she feels that strong, More power to her for having the strength to say how she feels.

Anonymous said...

like you said before, the only people who hurt are the dead.... I truly believe Brothers did not commit this crime and the real kill is still on the loss,living as if he was free of the blood that bleeds on his hands every-night ..... But I also believe this crime was done by a professional, someone who new what they were doing, and their mission was to see that everyone in that house died... Because when you really think about it, why kill the six week year old boy, unless you were contracted to kill them all...... Think about

Anonymous said...

Who else would want the children dead except the father who wanted to live a life as a single man again, and notice how the children were shot in the back, he didn't have the guts to shoot with them looking at him. How do you explain a call from his cell phone in Bakersfield at the time of the crime ???

Anonymous said...

This scumbag Brothers rented a car in Ohio and then traveled 5,000+ miles in ONE WEEKEND...what did he do? Drive to Europe? Nope - he drove to Bakersfield, California, where he shot his family to death, then drove back to Ohio to make up an alibi.

Brothers did it, he knows that he did it, and now he is on death row where he belongs. Let him suffer - and suffer badly - before they strap him down and end his miserable life.

Anonymous said...

I believe this dude is innocent...too many holes in the case to sentence somebody to death. Where the hell is the NAACP

Anonymous said...

While many miles on a rental vehicle certainly raise questions, having no proof that Vincent Brothers was seen even traveling to Bakersfield let alone in the vicinity of the house, not being able to place him there via forensic evidence, no murder weapon and a shaky motive make form more than reasonable doubt.
It was also disturbing to see the video of police interviewing his brother and using quite extreme tactics resulting in his changing his story about having seen his brother.
Also the car rental company admitted they often just make up a number to check people out faster (in terms of mileage). And even if he did drive that many miles how could he have done all of that driving in such a short period of time, and why? The estimate was that he'd have to average 70 miles an hour the entire journey. It seems a really strange way to commit such a murder, because it was nearly impossible to accomplish.
And he isn't a man that lacks for intelligence.
He would disappear for days at a time and clearly the police where only able to prove infidelities during some of these time periods. I was sure they were going to find he'd done something more sinister - or find proof of a plan to murder his wife or something that would be, even without a murder weapon, enough to prove 'this man committed these murders' during those periods of time. Or something he did afterwards. But there was really nothing really sinister. He'd not committed many violent crimes. He prior girlfriend said he'd been violent with her, but she was alive, so clearly despite that fact that it was wrong of him to abuse her he could have ended her life and did not.
The jury didn't take much time to convict him, however, so maybe there's more information that I'm not aware of that is more damning.

But from what I do know - it just seems a very difficult way in which to commit such extreme acts of violence by someone who whatever his faults did not have a history of violence toward his wife and children.

Also, it was mentioned that his mother-in-law opened her heart and home to murder suspects. Could it be that one one of the people she wanted to help ended up being a true murderer?

I'm left with great doubts about whether this man is guilty - imagine having lost your family and then being sent to death row without any kind of undeniable proof that you were even near your family let alone could, would and did kill them. It could happen to any of us since he was convicted with shaky circumstantial evidence, it seems, and that's as scary as this crime and the fact that an innocent man may have been sent to death row after having suffered a terrible loss.

I'm so sorry for that family. For the short lives of those children and they way they ended. For those beautiful women and the kindness that is apparent in their eyes and demeanor. I can't and don't want to imagine what they all went through in their last moments.

But I also wonder....if Brothers is innocent then he is a victim in this horror who will loose his life too.

Anonymous said...

Of he was innocent, why did he lie abbot being involved in the accident. It was not him who was responsible for the wreck. Also, why would he have his entire family lying for him especially the when he mentioned that he used the credit card at walmart when it was really his brother. And where did he go when he put all that milage on the car. Honestly, hue evidence points to him and no one else had a motive... He needs to die!

Anonymous said...

I just saw the case and feel he was guilty....he calculated everything very well....just like how he dissappeared for days he knew wat he had to do so he didnt leave a trace.it was a very cold crime for each victim especially d kids.im glad justice was served!

Chay said...

The mileage was questionable. The attendant from the rental company said they are not always accurate with their mileage records. I can not imagine that this man who had this outstanding reputation and that his wife married 3 different times would shoot a 6 week old baby in the back. I do not know if he commited these murders but I do see quite a bit of reasonable doubt to not be able to understand how he was convicted and sentenced to death.

Anonymous said...

Just watched is story on Investigative ID channel and was shocked to see that he was found guilty beyond reasonable dout wth the small amt circumstantial evidence. I have had rental cars for three months 3 diff cars and no the mileage is not always correct and how was he able to physically driive 70mph with no stops 4 gas or to slow down to make the timeline work. Hmm...

Anonymous said...

I am surprised he was found guilty, his defense did not present any other possible suspects, even the cops did not present any other possible suspects. It was just him period, cause he was a womanizer! This case needs to be reviewed by the Innocence Project, cause he is going to be put to death. Sad for hose young kids. May they rest in peace

Anonymous said...

Vincint will experience Spanish inquisition types of torture along with horror that we cant even comprehend. In Hell he will want this Hell to be over & wish that he could just die, but Hell is eternal. The worst of the worst pains of Hell will continue for ever on....... And he thinks prison sucks.
Sounds like a fair sentence to me J.S.

Anonymous said...

I am having a tough time with this case, 1st very shallow motive, 2nd the time line, he supposedly drive 4500 miles in 3 days time, thats averaging 62.5 miles driven an hour. 3rd When does he stop for fuel,food? This all would add time. Plus it is very unlikely that one can stay awake for 3 days straight and drive...go in and slaughter a family, which btw how did he time it just right that they would be there? 4th did the investigators ever look in a different direction for anyone else? If i would have been on the jury, I would not have been convinced beyond a reasonable doubt.

Erin said...

I sat next to Vincent Brother's on a 5 hour plane ride cross country (No, not during the dates above- 2 months earlier in May I believe) He doted about his kids and was the nicest guy ever. I have never been wrong with my woman's intuition in 41 years and don't think I was wrong there either.

What about Joanie Harper's lesbian girlfriend? Lots of speculation I've read online that SHE was involved as they'd broken up. Yes this case has more holes than Swiss Cheese and I hope one day the truth comes out before it's too late.

Anonymous said...

This is truly a sad commentary on what our society has become. We need prayer in our schools.

Anonymous said...

He is a killer and should rot in hell...

Anonymous said...

The first comment about sequestering Troy is reminiscent of so many claims of innocence when the case is stacked against the defendant.Since they cannot fathom true guilt of someone else or cannot actually defend themselves, then there MUST BE police/prosecutor hanky-panky. Otherwise the person is guilty. Conspiracy theory must always be viewed by its reasonableness and WHO is making the claim. It usually doesn't hold water!

D. Casolaro said...

Vincent Bruthers is innocent! A blind man could see that! He drove 4400 miles, roundtrip, averaging 70(!) miles an hour; oh, and in the middle of this cross country high-speed race he manages to kill 5 people (leaving zero physical evidence)?! Dumbest thing I've ever heard. The prosecution had NO evidence. No motive. No murder weapon. No evidence he drove to California. LIES!! This is an outrage!! That means any man can be convicted of murder. No need for evidence. Just some outrageous story by the prosecution. Well, we may not have any evidence; but, we believe he did it (cause... MAGIC!). The police didn't even investigate other leads (and, there were a LOT). If this can happen to this man, it can happen to any man.

Anonymous said...

There are so mant holes in this case. I trully believe that an innocent man has been convicted.
How could he drive 4,300 miles in three days and only drive at night.
I hope that people are aware of the treatment one of his brothers got frome the police, during their questioning of the brother. Well if you dont it was horriable.
Why would he kill his family over money. Alot of men go along with their lives very wealthy and never give thier wives a dime. i am sur if this man did not want to give up any money he woulsd not.
We really nweed to wake up as a nation and abolish the death penalty. Here could be one more innocent person we put to death. My prayers are with you Mr. Brothers.

Smokie said...

"Was she making that statements because of the infamous Brothers last name or if she truly felt he committed the crime."

What an idiotic question. Of course she said that because she truly felt he committed the crime. Geez.

Anonymous said...

Speaking as the child of a convicted felon (a pedophile), I hated my last name and wanted to change it. Of course she doesn't want to be associated w/ him: he is capable of killing his own children and she is one. He broke her heart. She has every right to state how she feels. He killed her brothers and sisters. The only reason she is not dead is she has a different mom & thus lives in a different home.

Anonymous said...

I dont blame Margaret, I would have dropped the name too. Vincent was unfaithful, he didnt love his family, he deserves everything thats coming to him. He thought he would get away with it. Death is too easy. COWARD

Anonymous said...

He did it & I hope he rots in HELL,his daughter is smart enough 2 know also....I would have disowned him 2

Long Islander said...

She had a right to her comment since the "Brothers" are well known in New York. They are quite a few of them and all have felonies. I truly believe that either Vincent did the murder or his brother Troy did. Either way Vincent got what he deserved. I do agree there is more to this story maybe one day we will know the truth, and being that I went to school with the Brothers in Long Island New York, I know them to be heartless individuals. in the end God will judge them all.....

Anonymous said...

The daughter has the right to feel the way she does...looking into the family history these guys that I went to school with and know to well were always in trouble....You see the "Brothers" which were maybe about seven or so of them. Lived in Bellport New York. Most of the brothers have felonies been in and out of jail and one or two are still in prison. They were well know for being trouble makers and a few feared them. so this doesn't surprise me out all. I also know that one was charged with baby shake syndrome...At the end of this all God will Judge him or whoever did it, but I truly believe they have the right person.

Anonymous said...

The daughter has the right to feel the way she does...looking into the family history these guys that I went to school with and know to well were always in trouble....You see the "Brothers" which were maybe about seven or so of them. Lived in Bellport New York. Most of the brothers have felonies been in and out of jail and one or two are still in prison. They were well know for being trouble makers and a few feared them. so this doesn't surprise me out all. I also know that one was charged with baby shake syndrome...At the end of this all God will Judge him or whoever did it, but I truly believe they have the right person.

Anonymous said...

I truly thought this man was guilty, but after watching Dateline, and hearing everything the prosecution had it was NOTHING. OJ Simpson had more evidence against him, and he got off. This is a panel of OUR peers, not mine. Did they even look, and listen or just rush to judge. I love children, and want who killed those babies prosecuted, but I want it to be the right person. You cant make a decision based on emotion. Yes hes a piece of shit when it comes to relationships/marriage, but did he murder them?

Anonymous said...

I'm troubled that they are relying on a car rental. Those things are never cleaned and mileage hardly ever recorded properly. Also the identity of person involved in car accident Witnesses identified Brothers. And the two men don't look anything alike. Does anyone know if witnesses confirmed or denied the mans claim that he was the driver. Also if Brothers did it there's no way he drove there and back alone. I guess I dont want to believe a father did that to his children. But we will never know. Sad

Anonymous said...

I'm pretty sure that an employee from the car rental company say that they did not keep accurate or timely records of mileaged. Basically that they were very laxed. Am I incorrect on this?

Anonymous said...

I don't think that they proved without a reasonable doubt that he was guilty though. I just saw this episode run on tv and it just broke my heart about the family. I don't think they looked into the angle about grandmother and how she was an activist and helped criminals on trial. Someone might have been bitter, just sayin'.

Anonymous said...

The Police would not have arrested him if he was not guilty. The prosecutor would not have prosecuted him if he was not guilty. Fortunately the Jury realizes these facts and convicted him despite a lack of so called "physical evidence". Driving 4500 in 72 hours is not that difficult especailly in a big comfortable car such as a Dodge Neon.

FNE said...

Ummmm, having driven in a Dodge Neon, I would not call it big or comfortable. I also find it hard to believe if his average speed had to be 70mph and he did not once get a ticket, he would have to have been one lucky dude. DNA evidence has proven quite convincingly that the police DO arrest innocent men and prosecutors DO prosecute innocent men I am not saying without a doubt that he is innocent. I am saying is that all we can do is speculate on what happened. As I mentioned in a previous reply the only people who know what happened are either dead or is the killer and they can't or won't speak. If Vincent Brothers did indeed commit the murders or had someone else commit them for him it is in his best interest to continue to protest his innocence, given the amount of circumstantial evidence that convicted him.

Anonymous said...

I have one question. they said that the one son had his finger tip bit off. Where is the dna from that. the killer had to have gotten some saliva or something on this childs finger ?????

Anonymous said...

another thing, vincent brothers said on the stand, that he and his brother had gone to a game.... was there any footage/video survalence of him at this game ???

Anonymous said...

I don't pretend to know the mind of a killer--but there are very few people heartless enough to kill an infant. I an not saying that the prosecution proved the case beyond a reasonable doubt-- but the makeshift memorial for the baby suggests he did it; to my mind. Why would any other killer take the life of a 6 week old baby? For whatever reason he wanted his family gone. Finally, don't forget about the print inside the glove that was found..wasn't it a positive match?

Anonymous said...

What a lost world we live in. Vincent wanted to be single again, enjoy a new life. Not burdened to child support he couldn't afford, xwife for the next 18-20 yrs. Hated his wife, his motherinlaw, they knew his lies. He knew their church routine, nap before evening service. He had time to slip in his house. Wrapped his feet, wore a jumpsuit, gloves, mask, Shot and stabbed his wife in the back. shot her mom in the face, just so she could see it coming, they knew it was him. The kids were shot in the back, couldn't look them in the face either, the 4 year old watched him, bit his fingers off in his mouth cause he witnessed the carnage, saw the gun pointed at him, knew what was coming, braced for the pain that would end his life. Cold, Deliberate. did the job and got back on the road. Did Troy ride with him? is that why he never testified? he knew, how can you Brothers live with yourself? I hope Vincent relives it everyday his eyes open and close. He enjoys the memory. Just didn't think he'd get caught. You can't fool God.

leaanne727 said...

Maybe he didn't do it, but if he didn't, he had someone else do it. He's the only one with motive to kill the ENTIRE family. This was an execution and he is the only one who would have benefitted.

Anonymous said...

Just finished watching his story on Own and still very hard to believe that he could have done something like this, I knew him from elementary school and then had him again in jr high, and he was always giving us students good advice, and telling us to stay out of trouble. Very hard to believe he would do something like this.

Anonymous said...

This man was NOT proven Guilty beyond a shadow of a doubt. Something is fishy about the prosecution not having any hard core evidence of him being at the scene.

Anonymous said...

Looking at this on Dateline I really think he is innocent It just doesn't add up.

Anonymous said...

There is definately resonable doubt. The biggest peace of evidence was the bugs on the radator. Can't tell me that bugs could have came from someone else driving the car at another time.

Anonymous said...

I cannot believe how many people think this guy is innocent! I agree with the comment "HE'S A PIG"

Anonymous said...

And why were they stabbed and shot? Why would he leave the gun? Who's to easy those bugs weren't from another renter? Way too many loop wholes to convict! Something isn't right.

Anonymous said...

I believe there is a cover up within the Bakersfield police. Think about it the mother was an advocate for criminal rights, so I'm sure someone within that office career was affected from this. There was no murder weapon found and from the last time I checked anytime you buy a gun its recorded. I am sure the police has plenty of guns to choose from in their evidence locker. They had already divorced once so why would he murder his whole family because of another one.

Anonymous said...

He did it. He deserves everything he gets.

Anonymous said...

If he it's innocent, why all the lies?? An innocent man would not have needed to fabricate an alibi and yet he made up 2 false scenarios - those are not the actions of an innocent man!!!

Anonymous said...

I don't know if he did it or not. But I do know that my friend and college basketball team mate at SWCC and her babies and mother is gone. Whoever did it, may God have mercy on your soul.

Sad in Jacksonville, FL

Anonymous said...

Inocent people do not lie. Why would he have his brother lie about the credit card? Ok, rental cars companies are not always accurate. Where is the explanation/proof of where he drove for 4,000 miles? why would he lie about the bycicle accident involving a child? VB is acting like a guilty man, his behaviour is speaking for him. Innocent people do not lie at all!!

Anonymous said...

yes he did and i also believe he had help?smh she was sleeping with the enemy sad?

Anonymous said...

Since it was less than 72 hours and at least 4500 miles, it's physically impossible to have driven that. I once drove from Kansas City to Tampa in 18 hours. That's 1,050 miles and I averaged 58 mph. I GUARANTEE you I didn't travel below the speed limit - ever. I was always around 5mph over it. Also, I only stopped twice - once in Paducha, Ky and once in Atlanta, Ga just long enough to get gas and go to the bathroom.

There is no way on earth you can average 70mph for three days!!!! There are just too many things that cut into the average - besides gas and bathroom breaks. Forget about eating and sleeping. There are going to be many road construction issues in 4500 miles. And, that doesn't even count the time driving through cities where you have increased traffic issues and slower speed limits.

And, the argument is that he may have gone 90 the bulk of time is ridiculous. If he planned this entire thing, then the LAST thing he would want to do was to get a ticket for speeding. I once drove to El Paso and back from Kansas City and was pulled over three separate times because I didn't realize speed limits changed - and I wasn't going 90 in a 70!

And, then we are supposed to believe that he would have just happened to have found them when they could have been anywhere. And, that nobody was going to see him come in or out of the house in the middle of the afternoon or hear gunshots and recognize him. Ridiculous.

They had no physical evidence of any kind, no motive, no witnesses, no nothing. Even if he was in town that entire weekend, they wouldn't have had a case.

Unbelievable.

Anonymous said...

from what I have read and seen on this case, If I was a member of the jury I would NEVER have voted guilty. Just too many holes in the prosecution case. The defense attorney must be doorknob. I have seen him talk and he is the most inarticulate attorney I have ever seen....My advice is get a good lawyer. I all for punishing the guilty and this man my well be guilty but the case as presented is a far cry of showing it.

Anonymous said...

This is one of The most saddest cases....What's hard to believe is the Truth....This is Something Many people don't want to Accept ..Especially if it's Negative Or Bad...We don't know what happened that day.....But we know 5 people are neever coming back.....I'm Convinced That Vincent was possibly having an affair & unfortunately during the time of the murder of his entire family....He was with another woman....Which he was known for his many disappearing acts.....This is a hard thing for anyone to Deal with..

Anonymous said...

I just watched this Dateline show.. It is true there is way too much inconsistencies to prove beyond a reasonable doubt. However, I have seen cases like this where a man was convicted based on circumstantial evidence. There are many things to consider while reviewing this case. And as I have read in previous posts, you all have stated a lot of them. Whether he did it or not, there is a lot of circumstantial evidence. If you think outside the box for a minute and view it with a clear mind, you think of a family who was gunned down and murdered in a vicious way. Which usually means an emotional attachment to the killings. And the wife, shot, and stabbed. String emotional anger there. A lot of the other evidence presented can be construed in different ways. The bugs, mileage, phones, receipts, no video at gas stations, etc. Either way not proven beyond reasonable doubt. However, I have been in the field for many years and can attest that a crime of this magnitude is usually committed by someone close to victims. There will not be a stranger going into a random home, in a random town, and murder an entire family without some kind of attachment. Either emotionally or physically. But we shall see on appeals.

Anonymous said...

a dodge neon going 90 miles per hour the bulk of 5400 miles? really? if you know about dodge neon and its record, you would laugh the prosecution case out the court house. these are toy cars not real ones.
Mr. Vincent Brothers lawyer was probably incompetent. I would have won that case with my poor paralegal degree any day.

Anonymous said...

I agree with this completely.

Anonymous said...

Well said and so true.

Michelle Phillips said...

After carefully thinking about this case I find myself being reassured that it is not only possible but very much realist that a person could pull off such a heinous cold blooded plot. I happen to have the experience of being the wife of a professional truck driver that takes this very same trip about twice a week. The trip however is carried out by two drivers in a eighteen wheeler that is governed at 60 mph. So! It would be much easier for a small very fuel efficient vehicle to make the trip in an even much shorter span. He most likely did enable the help of his brother, but a determined individual with the help of no doze and other anti-sleep energy shots can wire you up pretty well. I will estimate that he or they most likely drove at 75 to 80 mph at times with much luck afforded to him or them. Now! let us get to the gas scenario. How do we pull this one off without any video surveillance.I suspect that that since he had been plotting this for a while he bought five or teen gallon gas cans and had them in stored away until he needed them. He also bought a couple for cash somewhere in Ohio and filled them . The brother could have easily assisted in this also. You could easily just burn and melt away these containers along the way very easily. Never be surprised what a clever cold heart above average killer is capable of masterminding. Now! lets go back to the showing up out of nowhere after ten years to establish an alibi. I have found that people and especially family always have a hidden agenda when they just mysteriously shows up when they don't visit you in the first place. That is always a very big red flag with me and should be with most people. He was using his brother to help do his dirty work and the brother soon realized it and didn't want to implicate himself. He most likely couldn't believe it but soon realized he had innocently assisted his brother in a crime and didn't want to be the one to be responsible for giving testimony that would convict his brother and sentence him to the death penalty.
He very well knew this would make him an outcast to the rest of his family. I do believe that without a doubt the convicted the correct person.

Anonymous said...

Seriously, are you on drugs?

Anonymous said...

I have to agree with you , I also think the same thing I feel that does days he was no were to be find he was with a other woman, I think they need to re-open the case and get more evidence because I will never convict a person without me seeing evidence like the gun and DNA testing etc !!!

Tez C said...

Well I just watched this story on dateline and I've read several articles on this... it's a very sad story and several holes in it... this travel deal is impossible I own my rig and been driving over 11yrs the time frame is just too short... I feel sorry for both families... the world we live in is so corrupt from government legal entities and lawmakers its horrible

Anonymous said...

If this is the case from what you all say... that he is guilty. Can someone explain to me how could he possibly know about an accident that occured that was never reported unless he was there. I can't say whether or not he is guilty but I can say this. There was not enough evidence in this case that should have had a guilty plea. If anything, maybe a hung jury. You can assume on gas mileage and the word of other but the truth of the matter is there was no DNA, no weaon, gun residue or any other SOUND, SOLID!evidence that placed him anywhere in the area. To me prosecution Should have never taken that case to trial because the evidence is not solid. And if an innocent man is in jail, I pray for those who have judged him based on if eveidence. Those are the ones who will have to pay.

Laura said...

Difficult to believe that a man who had previously been violent only when he got angry, would murder in such cold blood.
After driving most of the way across the country, staring for hours at the road, he would have been exhausted, not angry.
I drove across the country in 5 days once - even that was exhausting.
And how did they know the Western bugs were from his use of the rental car, not someone else's? Does the rental company wash the radiator every trip? I don't think so.

Anonymous said...

Wow, so sad for the kids, 6weeks old? How could anyone do such a thing! The miles driven in such a short amt of time does put a lot of reasonable doubt however, when you plan, ahead you're prepared. With how the family was killed, it was over kill which is what a killer does when its personal. Robbery was not found this was an intended kill and I can't see anyone other than the husband doing it. Stats show killers and attackers overkill and cover or turn victims over after do so because they do not want to see what they have done. Once he killed his wife to me he had to kill them all. The grandmother had a pistol and from the above story was found shot to death in the hallway with it beside her. I'm really sick about this and pray to God the family did not suffer and the correct person is being punished.


Concerned said...

Has anyone tried to drive a Dodge Neon of the same model year the same route in the same time frame? If not, someone should..... I do not believe it is possible. It is not right to kill him via the death penalty if the crime was impossible to accomplish.

Anonymous said...

NAACP would only fight if race relations are involved and the people he killed were non-black OR the family was killed by a white man and was acquitted. They pick their battles wisely and this would be difficult to fight. Sad story.

Anonymous said...

This is a very disturbing case. I think Vincent is innocent. I just don't think he could have pulled off such a long drive in that amount of time, there and back without sleeping especially. Three days with no sleep and only doing one thing: driving. Is it possible? Yeah but I know most people would eventually fall asleep. I thought the lady who was the prosecuter was kind of just a bitchy ignorant witch hunter who was only concerned with winning. And that's a huge issue in our justice system. Both sides are so concerned with winning that the truth gets lost.

Anonymous said...

I wonder about Brothers’ being denied an appeal. In some states, a conviction of a capital offense means you are guaranteed the right to an appeal. I noticed awhile back, while I was reading the Bible, that the death penalty was forbidden in cases where the evidence was circumstantial. There had to be at least two eyewitnesses. I believe it was in the book of Numbers. (I suppose DNA could be like an eywitness but they don't even have that.) But in this case, where is the circumstantial evidence if they can’t even prove he was in town?

Anonymous said...

If he did not do it. Who did? He looks like a smart one. A crime so horrifing like this is so hard to beleive that a human being can commit, not to even mention the father to the childern. People present another suspet and then we go from there. I am not saying that he did it. Present someone else.

Anonymous said...

It is my opinion that Vincent Bruthers is in fact guilty of all five homicdes, but I have not seen nor heard enough evidence that suficiently constitutes a guilty beyond a reasonable doubt verdict - the necessary element of a criminal conviction.

Anonymous said...

I watched the Dateline story and you have to remember that they only give a synopsis of the case and only the jury heard the story presented by the prosecution. There are indeed holes in what we were shown by Dateline, however there are several unanswered questions such as; why would he take a trip in the first place with a newborn at home. My "opinion" is that he did it because he was probably feeling smothered with a wife and three small kids at home and wanted to be free to live his life unencumbered...even if he hated his wife and wanted out, killing babies is unforgivable!

Anonymous said...

why is there no record of him calling his wife while he was traveling, they had a newborn child and couples call one another when traveling.

Latasha London said...

My eyes have seen and my ears have heard many things In my days. I don't put anything past any being on this earth!

May God be for us all!

Rej Brodeur said...

This is a troubling case. He may be guilty, but, from the Dateline story anyway, it wasn't proven beyond a reasonable doubt. There's not enough evidence to sentence him to death.

Anonymous said...

Terrible they cant even prove he was in California. The evidence (which there is none) show that this is a tragedy.

Nicole Cox Newton said...

He is GUILTY! He's on DR, rightfully so! There is no doubt in my mind that he did commit these murders! Sick and pathetic! Inject him ASAP!

Anonymous said...

I think the phone records speaks. A wife and three children. Why didn't he call someone and say I have not been able to contact my wife. Can someone go by and check on them. If he loved them so much, why wasn't he calling to check on them. To say good night, I love and miss you guys. 10 years ago I would be saying he did not do this. However, life is teaching me. Human nature is amazing. We will do some awful things.

Godzilla said...

Wow - tough one! I have seen other Dateline episodes with more details, and ones where they have interviewed the jury. I surely would have liked to have seen that here. Above someone commented that his cell phone was used to call from the Harper residence.I did not see that brought out anywhere - is that a proven fact? And driving a Neon that far in that amount of time is hard to believe - even if he would have had lots of cocaine, and I saw nothing indicating that was part of his lifestyle. Along with no physical evidence, no proof of gas stops, etc., it seems like a very poor defense effort.

Anonymous said...

i am currently watching this on uk tv...this man is innocent...timelines impossible and no evidence...in uk..this would be not guilty...

Concernedcitizen said...

I believe Vincent was assisted by someone in killing his family. He especially took out his wife and probably had someone else take out the kids and mother in law. Because the wife was stabbed, shot three times in the head and shot in the arms, like an emotionally hate. This was personal. Yes he is the killer and maybe one of his brothers, someone not so close to the kids and mother n law. He is a liar and killer. Did he even attempt to explain the mileage on the rental, no because he drove to Bakersville Ca with assistance.

LDB said...

The person who claimed in court that he was the driver in the accident had originally said he didn't know about the accident noir did he have a car like the one that got the boy. Also lets say that the guy in court was telling the truth. That HE was the one who hit the kid on the bike. How in the name of ask that is holy did Brothers know about the minor, unreported accident if he was 2400 miles away? I'm sorry but guilt or not, and I think not, the justice system did not work. The state did NOT prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt. There is nothing BUT reasonable doubt in this case. When the penalty is death, I would rather a million guilty men go free then one innocent man be out too death.

Anonymous said...

There was a 4pm phone call from the Harper Residence to Brothers' cell phone in Ohio on the day of the murders. What time did the murders take place?

Anonymous said...

Vincient is guilty, any one can see it. Where did he go on such a long trip in his car after arriving at his mother's house. If he visited someone else, why didn't he say so. That is because he went back home to kill his family. Why did he give his brother a credit card to use and who did he give his phone to so that they could make calls. This man is guilty and should get what is coming to him. Why would anyone else just go in and kill a entire family? What reason would they have. If you noticed, the wife was brutally murdered; she had knife and gunshot wounds. He cause be that angry with her except someone that knew her. He did it, anyone that doesn't thing so, is fooling themselves. Think about the dead wife and the loving children.They have the right man.

Anonymous said...

I first questioned if he was guilty or not cause of reasonable doubt but if u go read his murderpedia it gives all the evi and he definitely is guilty. Dateline should have showed the damnin evidence!

Anonymous said...

This case is extremely sad!!! It appears that many on this post are posting from emotions and law...Many find him innocent because they knew him to be a man who "worked in his community, "loved children" and gave them "great advice... Many want to use the law and the fact there were holes in the case, therefore that proves innocence...Although the politics of law could have gotten this man off, the truth is, Vincent Brothers, planned and calculated these murders to the T! Innocent people do not LIE... Explain him lying about hitting a little boy on a bike, explain the witness who testified to being the man who hit a boy on the bike... Explain him asking his brother to use his credit card and forging his name? Explain his brother not seeing him that whole weekend but used his brother for an alibi? Explain why there are no witnesses that seen him at this basketball game he claims him and his brother attended? VINCENT IS A LIAR! If my life were on line and I was innocent, I would not lie! This man is GUILTY and the scum of the earth! I do not have a heaven of a hell to place him in but I do pray he CONFESSES with his mouth to God and the victims' family, I pray he ask them for forgiveness. Vincent thought he was smart and he almost got away with it, but I truly find him GUILTY in the court of Law. Also, the wife was not only shot multiple times but she was also stabbed... WHY the stabs? Well usually violent stabs are a sign of a PASSION CRIME, someone personal who knows the victim and is angry with the victim, usually stab. The "hit man" theory, doesn't fit. A hit man is usually in and out and most likely would have only used a gun, and the WIFE is the only victim who had stab wounds... because Vincent resented her most and was angry with her. Also, he shot the younger victims (new born and toddler) in the back, because he could not bare to look them in the face.... The 4 year old bite his own finger and his eyes were open... Most likely he was the last victim killed by his father... after shooting the grandma in the hallway (she was startled by the sounds of a gun, granny grabbed her gun and went to check on her daughter, where Vincent met her in the Hallway and shot her)... He most likely tried to calm the 4 year old down and the baby was biting on his fingers because he was in fear, daddy told him to lay down, he obeyed and shot the baby in the side of the head (and he watched his daddy do it, hence his eyes being opened)... No force entry, wife was still in bed enjoying her nap with her 2 younger kids, she never seen it coming... he covered the baby because MURDERS who know the victim personally, usually cover the victim, if they feel bad or shame for the crime.... VINCENT BROTHERS IS GUILTY... they have the right man! RIP to all the victims and sending my love and prayers to the families involved, including the mother who gave birth to this monster... May God give her peace.

Anonymous said...

Evidence proves Brothers guilt- setting up an alibi with his brother, insect residue on the radiator which can only be attributed to a western location, glove fragment on wife's purse containing his DNA, access to home with a key,
mileage on car rental.Done deal.

Anonymous said...

If his mother in law confronted him at the time of the attack, why wouldn't he kill her? That's obvious. Especially if she had her own gun pointed at him. If they divorced and she got custody, he risked having to spend the majority of his salary on child support. Not to mention 3 children would be a lot of responsibility on a single dad with such a robust sexually promiscuous lifestyle. What about the fact he lied not once, but twice with false alibis? He had his brother use his cell phone and credit card in Columbus to make it look like he was there, and had the rest of his family cover for him by saying he was there at the time of the murder, to which they all eventually revoked their statements. THEN he tried to say he was involved in a traffic accident in Ohio the day of the murder, which was again proven false. An innocent man doesn't lie for the purpose of covering his tracks.

Anonymous said...

Was he a principal at fremont school

Reese Jordan said...

This is one of those cases that keep me on the fence abt the death penalty. I don't believe enough evidence has been presented to take this mans life. I have watched sooo many stories lately where men were placed on death row with more "evidence" but later all kinds of judicial misconduct was proven. I personally don't think a life should be taken unless it is proven above and beyond of their guilt. This was a very emotional case because their were innocent babies involved and I am sure the police were under all kind of pressure to make an arrest. Who wouldn't be. As a parent, I know I would be looking for something.... I'm sure the community was afraid. But to convict this man on the flimsy evidence provided... It's sad. If he did it, by all means put the needle in the bastards arm. But we need to be CERTAIN he is the killer and not just a scapegoat.

gerard lales said...

Yes you got a point here !

gerard lales said...

no video of the brothers rental car in a 100 gas station....hum?
Mrs green may have a political agenda.......???!!!
But in great America a prosecutor can hide evidences that would prove the person innocent......it is just the way it is.......and most of the time in all impunity......
Long way to go guys.....good luck!!!
Ps: now remember.....don't be stingy on a lawyer.....lol

gerard lales said...

This is great america.......you got to be patient......justice is slow..it is a big country...If he is innocent..
He will prevail.....

gerard lales said...

I do not believe that his lawyer was very convincing. ...
And you guys forgot that no video could be taken of his rental car in about 100.gas station.......it almost sounds like a sick joke......
Gotta put somebody in jail.........right Mrs green....lol.

Anonymous said...

The facts and evidence are very convincing. Mr. Brothers intentions were evident and he carried out the crime with precision. Fortunately his oldest daughter was not present when he went on his killing rampage. Mr. Brothers has no conscious and who knows what would have happened had she been there. Had it not been for a vigorous prosecution and advances in forensic science Mr. Brothers may have succeeded. He is a calculating mass murderer and awaits his fate in the right place - Death Row.

Anonymous said...

Who else would have a motive to kill the baby? If what u say is true..his brother cooperated to help convict him-- why would he do that unless he thought Vincent was guilty?

Logan's Mama said...

The child bit his own fingertip off...

Anonymous said...

There was a similar case in New Zealand http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lundy_murders

After many years the husband/father won a retrial which has yet to be heard.

can't keep me silent said...

This is KERN COUNTY/BAGELS "justice"...there's no way in hell he did this! My ex husband was long haul truck driver and I drove with him a hundred times from bakersfield to new York/ma/Ohio/pa...etc etc..theres absolutely no way humanly possible to make this drive in the amount of time alleged!! Oh, and this is with falsified truck log books, it's just impossible!! If anyone has ever kept track of records and researched cases in kern county you'd have no question of this man's innocence. I suggest going through newspaper archives (Tehachapi News) and research all the people found dead in their homes and subsequently the sheriff homicide detectives would be called only to claim them to be suspicious circumstances. People are found beaten, bloodied, hung to door knobs..etc and ALL OF THEM are declared suicides or natural deaths by kern county coroners office. BUT..IT'S THE KERN COUNTY SHERIFF, DONNY YOUNGBLOOD, WHO HAS THE FINAL SAY IN DETERMINING THE CAUSES OF THESE "MURDERS"...SAME MAN WHO HAD HIS EX-WIFE ATTACKED WITH POLICE KANINE....WHO'S ADDICT SON GETS OFF ON SERIOUS CRIMINAL CHARGES...SAME MAN WHO COVERS THE CRIMINAL ACTIONS OF HIS DETENTION DEPUTIES AT THE LERDO PRE-TRIAL DETENTION FACILITIES AND ON THE STREETS OF GREATER KERN COUNTY!! AS for Ed Jagels...do some research about his group of colleagues and their involvement in the lives of the many young male juveniles thrown into the justice system and their "opportunity" given to live a life outside of incarceration; albeit...terms conditioned by the homosexual pedofiles that ran the kern county district attorney's office under MR. ED JAGELS!! This county is deluged with twisted corruption and greed IS the bottom line. Both, city and county corruption, neither is above board on this issue. Unless "we the people" begin publicly demanding, law enforcement and city/county official's, accountability in these questionable issue's "we the people" will be living in a county of lawlessness, void of Constitutional Right's.

Anonymous said...

I just saw the trial on TV for this case. I think him and his brother, Troy, took turns driving and Vincent killed his family. They had to use cash to pay for gas. He had to have left his cell phone back with his other brother and told him to make a couple calls on it to lock in his aliby even more. The whole thing is just sick.

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