Skylar Neese was a sixteen years old girl living in Star City, West Virginia. She never came back home after she went out of the home to meet her friends, Sheila Eddy and Rachel Shoaf. Her body was found on January 16, 2013, from Wayne Township, Greene County, Pennsylvania.
Skylar Neese was the only child of David Dave Neese and Mary Neese. When Skylar Neese died, David Neese was working as a product assembler in Walmart whereas Mary Neese was working in the cardiac lab as an administrative assistant. Skylar Neese, with a dream to become a criminal defence lawyer, was studying at University High School. She was also working with her two friends. Her two friends include Rachel Shoaf, the only daughter of Greg Eddy and Tara Clendenen, and Sheila Eddy, the only daughter of Patricia Shoaf and Rusty. All three met at University High School.
When Skylar Neese disappeared, best friend Sheila Eddy while telling about what happened that night to David Neese stated that night all three friends were roaming on the car around the town before getting high. Shoaf dropped Neese at the end of the road to her apartment for Neese to sneak back to her apartment. As per the video captured by the surveillance camera on Neese’s apartment, she sneaked out and got in the car at around 12:30 AM. Skylar father shared that she did not take the mobile charger with her and left her window open that showing that she was intended to get back home.
Skylar Neese Murderers – Sheila Eddy and Rachel
Skylar Neese was invited by Eddy and Shoaf to sneak out on the night when she went missing. Neese was hesitant initially as she recently broke off with the two. They called and texted her several times and then Skylar Neese changed her plan.
As shared by Eddy and Rachel Shoaf, they were planning her murder for the past few months. Both left Eddy’s place in order to assault her. They carried kitchen knives, bleach, a paper towel, a towel and clean clothes. They hide knives in their handbags whereas hid other remaining items in Eddy’s vehicle trunk. At 12:30 AM, Neese sneaked out of her room’s window, crossed her apartment road and got on the backseat of Eddy’s sedan. As the officers from Law enforcement agencies shared the sedan was in Eddy’s usage that night. The three best friends went northwest towards Blacksville from Star City. As per the plan, Eddy and Rachel were supposed to travel through W.V. Route 7 but changed the route when spotted by a stated police car. Eventually, they reached their destination, a place where they smoked weed.
While girls were standing outside the car, Eddy and Shoaf told Neese that they forgot the lighter. Neese agreed to go and tack the lighter. As soon as Neese turned her back, Eddy and Shoaf counted one, two, three, gave each other a signal and started stabbing Neese. Skyler Neese, the victim tried to escape but was able to cover only a few feet before Shoaf grabbed her and tackled her to the ground. She continued hitting her. Neese managed to take the knife from Shoaf’ hand and cut Shoaf’s knee attempting to defend herself.
Eddy kept on assaulting Neese until there was no movement. Shoaf shared that gurgling sounds from Neese’s neck stopped. The postmortem reports of Neese exposed that she was stabbed more than 50 times. The murderers tried to bury her body and dragged Neese’s body to the roadside. However, the soil was rocky and hard, making it difficult to dig a hole in the soil. They covered her body in dirt, rocks and branches. Both of them returned to the car for cleaning themselves and also clean the murder scene. They left the murder place, took off their clothes soaked in blood and went back to their places.
Crime Scene Investigation of Skylar Neese Murder
Initially, the law enforcement agencies considered that Neese ran away and reported Neese’s disappearance. During early days, someone shared that Neese was spotted in North Carolina, but later the Star City Police resolute that it was not Neese. A flyer was posted by Neese family regarding their daughter is missing. When the footage of surveillance camera at Neese’s place was seen in a sedan car that belonged to Eddy. Neese’s best friend Shelia Eddy admitted that she picked Neese but Shoaf claimed Neese returned after half an hour. The West Virginia State Police also joined the investigation and interviewed other Neese’s friends at school.
The investigation took a turn when Rachel Shoaf admitted that Eddy killed Neese. Shoaf only gave motivation for the murder that they do not like Neese and do not want to be her friends. David Neese stated that both the girls were best friends of his daughter. Eddy even extended support to Neese’s family in the distribution of flyers among others. After confessing, Shoaf led police to Neese’s body. On 13 March 2013, a press release was issued by U.S. Attorney William J. Ihlenfeld, II that Neese’s body was found in Wayne Township. Her body was just at a distance of 30 minutes from her house.
Criminal Charges of Murder of Skylar Neese
Shoaf pleaded guilty on 1 May 2013 to second-degree murder. As per the transcript issued by a court, that Skylar Neese murderers picked Skylar up in Eddy Sedan. Girls drove the car to Pennsylvania, all three got out of the car and started socializing. As per the pre-arranged plan, Eddy and Shoaf stabbed her. The teens tried to bury her body but could not do so therefore covered Neese’s body with whatever was available. The transcript of the court indicated that many other students overheard Eddy and Shoaf conversation when they were plotting the murder of Skylar Neese, but thought it was a joke and did not report it.
As per Rachel Shoaf’s plea, she pleaded degree for attempting a second-degree murder by ‘unlawfully, willfully and maliciously plotting and murdering Skylar Neese by causing fatal injuries to her body. A 20 years sentence was recommended by the State of West Virginia. Through a lawyer, Shoaf’s family issued an apology for what she did.
West Virginia prosecutors identified Eddy publicly on 4 September 2013 as the second perpetrator of Neese’s murder. They announced that Eddy has tried for the murder of an adult. On 6 September 2013 grand jury indicted Eddy on first-degree murder, kidnapping and conspiracy about committing murder. Whereas, Eddy did not plead guilty.
Originally, 28 January 2014 was a trial date. Considering that there can be additional charges on Eddy by authorities in Pennsylvania, Eddy pleaded guilty to first-degree murder. She was sentenced to life in prison under West Virginia law. Eddy was eligible for parole after spending 15 years in prison. On May 1, 2013, Rachel Shoaf also received 30 years sentence and can apply for parole after spending 10 years in prison. Both women were kept at Lakin Correctional Center located in Mason Country.
Skylar’s parents transformed the wooded area where her body was found as her memorial. Skylar Neese’s father stated that he wanted people to remember the little girl that she was a good girl, not a beast how she was treated by her friends.