Nine year-old Elizabeth Olten was allegedly murdered by fifteen-year-old Alyssa Bustamante. Police say that Bustamante has confessed to investigators and the teen has been indicted on first-degree murder. Authorities say Bustamante used a knife on Elizabeth and strangled her. They say that Bustamante dug a grave for her victim prior to carrying out the act.
The fifteen year-old allegedly cut the throat of Elizabeth and stabbed her. Police say it was because “she stated she wanted to know what it felt like.”
We have been told that Bustamante tried to commit suicide when she was thirteen and was treated for depression and cutting herself. CNN Headline News showed video of Bustamante electrocuting herself.
Self-harm is strongly linked to child sexual abuse. As is depression, rage, and numbness to other people’s pain. I have wondered from the beginning of the case what would have caused a fifteen year-old girl to plan and brutally murder a nine year-old. What is the root of her rage and need for violence?
Alyssa Bustamante was not living with her parents at the time the crime was committed. I have to wonder why, and what caused her to become so depressed and suicidal? What created a child who has such rage inside of her that she wants to harm herself and others?
In public photos of Bustamante, Alyssa took many interesting photos of herself in positions with strange facial expressions and mannerisms. In the photos we saw a teenager who has an oral fixation and a teen who is excited about blood and aggression. The photos showed a girl who has a serious subconscious drive to kill herself, or to cause herself pain for self-punishment and guilt. Many of these photos depict a teen who wanted to carry out brutal violence on others, and who experienced pleasure in doing so.
In the photos, Bustamante often covered her face with her hair -a sign of shame and guilt. In one photo, she even seems to be reaching out for help. In another she is looking at her reflection in a mirror with her hand on the glass, as if longing to know what is wrong with her and how bad it will get –as if she is in fear of what she might do, but doesn’t know how to stop it.
Bustamnte showed signs of having been sexually abused in her childhood. Could this be the reason that she was driven to commit brutal murder on a nine year-old? Child sexual abuse can create violent rage inside of a person, rage beyond any understanding by those who have not experienced sexual abuse. If Alyssa was sexually abused in her younger years, does it excuse Alysssa? No. But it does point to a root cause.
Elizabeth Olten was sadistically attacked and suffered terrible fear and pain. I feel sorry for Elizabeth’s family, who know what she went through and that they can no longer hold their child.
|The victim, Elizabeth Olten|