What happens when you no longer want to be friends with someone who knows your secrets?
Two teenage girls chose a deadly option for their best friend, Skylar Neese.
16-year-old Skylar Neese went missing from her home in Star City, West Virginia on July 6, 2012, around 12 am. The remains of her body were found on January 16, 2013, in Wayne Canton, Greene County, Pennsylvania. This article details the harrowing experience and what followed.
Skylar Neese: Real Life Backstabbing Friend Killing Explained (10 Facts)!
1. Skylar’s body was found 30 miles from her home:
Star City, which was Skylar’s home, is located in Monongalia County, West Virginia. It sits on the northern state border below Pennsylvania. In 2010, it had a population of only 1,825 and was considered part of the metropolitan area of Morgantown.
On July 5, 2012, the day she was murdered, Skylar worked a shift at Wendy’s, then returned home to her family’s apartment in Star City.
2. Skylar Neese’s murderers were her besties:
Skylar Neese was stabbed to death by two of her high school best friends, Rachel Shoaf and Shelia Eddy.
When her parents reported Skylar missing, the evil best friends even handed out missing poster flyers that Skylar’s parents made, and even posted this on Twitter:
“Rest easy Skylar, you will ALWAYS be my best friend.” I miss you more than you could ever imagine. Shelia Eddy tweeted on Twitter.
In December 2012, Rachel Shoaf confesses to authorities that she and Shelia Eddy planned and organized the murder of Skylar Neese.
Rachel Shoaf pleaded guilty to second degree murder while Eddy pleaded guilty to first-degree murder on January 24, 2014.
Rachel pleaded guilty to second degree murder by “unlawfully, criminally, willfully, maliciously and intentionally causing the death of Skylar Neese by stabbing her and causing her fatal injuries.”
Rachel Shoaf was sentenced to thirty years in prison, with a chance of parole ten years later.
3. The disappearance of Skylar Neese started like this:
She told her parents that she was going to bed when she got home.
Security cameras in the apartment complex showed Skylar leaving the apartment through a window around midnight. We can then see her getting into a sedan through the security cameras.
Her father David Neese, checked Skylar’s room, he found her cell phone charger (this meant that she wasn’t planning on returning back home) and her window was left open. He noticed a stool outside the building and realized she had snuck in the night before. This suggested to her that she was planning to return that same evening.
Skylar’s parents got a phone call from Wendy’s where her daughter worked, the next evening. Her boss said she never showed up for her shift.
Skylar Neese was never heard from again.
4. The police didn’t look for her, thought she was a runaway:
The police initially thought it was a runaway situation when her parents reported Skylar missing.
They made the fatal decision not to issue an Amber alert. With the local law enforcement inactive, Skylar’s parents, David and Mary Neese took the decision to find their daughter. They scoured the greater Monongalia County area posting fliers on Skylar, asking anyone with information to come forward. But nothing materialized.
Eventually, the police found the mysterious sedan that had been filmed. The four door sedan caught on camera belonged to Skylar’s friend, Shelia Eddy.
5. Shelia Eddy doesn’t crack under police pressure, but brags about murder in school:
Shelia Eddy admitted that she picked up Skylar that night, but swore she dropped it an hour later.
Meanwhile, the two perpetrators attend the same public high school in Morgantown as their victim. When they were caught and sent for trial, the court transcript read out something interesting.
According to the court transcript, students overheard conversations between Rachel Shoaf and Shelia Eddy about planning the murder but did not report them, thinking they were joking.
6. What happened before Skylar Neese was murdered?
Even if Shelia Eddy didn’t initially crack when the FBI was brought in to take over the case on September 10, 2012, the team began by interviewing Skylar’s other friends and classmates in college high school. Enter Rachel Shoaf who blew her cover and admitted plotting with Eddy to kill Neese.
In December of that year, police received a call from Rachel Shoaf’s mother asking for help. Rachel could be heard in the background, looking tense and having problems. Eventually, Rachel was taken to a mental health facility where she was treated for mental depression. She was spending a week in treatment, having no contact with Shelia.
With a clearer head, Rachel met lawyers on January 3, 2013. Even though the police believed Rachel and Shelia knew what had happened to Skylar, they did not believe the two girls had killed her. So when Rachel confessed everything, they were shocked. Rachel Shoaf said that she and Shelia Eddy had been Skylar’s best friends, but then decided they didn’t want to be anymore. That’s why they had pre-meditated to kill her.
On the night of the murder, Shelia Eddy and Rachel Shoaf invited Skylar Neese to come take a walk with them. Skylar Neese, who had recently quarreled with the two girls, hesitated at first. After a series of messages and calls from the two girls, Skylar Neese makes a fatal decision and changes her mind. Around half past midnight, Skylar Neese comes out of her room through the window and crosses the street where Rachel and Shelia picked up Skylar in Shelia’s sedan car.
Police officers later determined that that evening Shelia Eddy was in possession of the sedan.
Rachel Shoaf, Shelia Eddy, and Skylar Neese then drive off to the northwest of Star City, toward Blacksville, using US Route 19. The killers originally planned to travel along WV Route 7, but they turn around when they see a police car parked in front of an arcade.
They finally arrive at their destination, just beyond the border with Pennsylvania, to a place where they smoke marijuana from time to time. Shelia Eddy and Rachel Shoaf have been planning the murder of Skylar Neese for months. They left Shelia Eddy’s house preparing to assault Skylar Neese. The teen killers brought with them their kitchen knives, bleach, paper towels, clean cloths, cleaning rags, and a shovel. The knives are concealed on them while the rest of the items are hidden in the trunk of Sheila’s four-door Sedan.
7. How was Skylar Neese murdered?
When the girls exit the vehicle, the murderers tell Skylar that they forgot to bring a lighter. Skylar offers to return to the car to take his. As soon as Skylar Neese’s back is turned, Rachel Shoaf and Shelia Eddy start counting to three – the signal agreed upon beforehand. With the signal given, Rachel and Shelia begin to stab Skylar. The victim tries to escape, but she can only do a few meters before Rachel knocks her to the ground and continues her assault. During the attack, Skylar manages to grab the knife from Rachel’s hands and, in an attempt to defend herself, slashes her knee.
Now for the gory details:
Her evil friend Shelia continues to stab Skylar until she dies.
Complete silence follows and according to Rachel, “Skylar’s neck stops gurgling noises”.
Skylar Neese was stabbed more than 50 times according to her autopsy wounds.
Rachel and Shelia then try to bury the body, as they had originally planned. They drag Skylar to the side of the road, but the road runs alongside a stream and the ground is too hard and rocky to dig a hole. Instead, they cover Skylar’s body with stones, fallen branches and rubble. They then return to the car to clean up and clean up the crime scene. After that, they leave the place, get rid of the bloody clothes and go home.
8. Two things now remained, finding the body and going to trial:
On January 16, 2013, Rachel took authorities to the scene of Skylar’s body which had been decomposing a little over six months since the teenage daughter had last left her family’s apartment. Skylar Neese’s remains were found within 30 kilometers of her home.
With the body found, the trial began.
On 1st May 2013, Rachel Shoaf pleaded guilty to homicide. According to Rachel Shoaf’s plea agreement, she pleaded guilty to second degree murder by having “unlawfully, willfully, criminally, and for malicious purposes, intentionally caused the death of Skylar Neese by stabbing and causing her fatal injuries”. In its plea, the state of West Virginia requested a 40-year sentence of incarceration.
Through her lawyer, Rachel Shoaf’s family has made a public apology for the acts perpetrated by their daughter.
On September 4, 2013, West Virginia prosecutors publicly identified Shelia Eddy as the second alleged perpetrator of Skylar Neese’s death and announced that she will stand trial as an adult.
Shelia Eddy was indicted by a grand jury with one count of kidnapping, one count of first degree murder and a conspiracy to commit one count of murder. She pleaded not guilty to all charges. She was due to have a trial from January 28, 2014, but four days before her trial, she changed her mind and pleaded guilty to first degree murder with mercy.
During the hearing, prosecutor Marcia Ashdown told the court that these girls had pre-meditated the murder which means they plotted to kill in advance. They had hidden knives inside their clothes so they could surprise Skylar when the time came. They also brought a shovel and clean clothes to take home after killing her.
“At an agreed signal, a countdown actually, these two girls, Shelia Eddy and Rachel Shoaf, stabbed Skylar to death,” Ashdown told the court. “They stood over her until her last breath.
Shelia Eddy was sentenced to life imprisonment with the possibility of parole after serving 15 years.
After Shelia Eddy’s hearing, Skylar’s father made a statement, saying it was “unacceptable” that the girl did not go to court or apologize for what she had done to his girl. “My life and that of my wife have been radically changed. We are no longer a family. You can look those responsible in the eye, but you can never know what they heard as they took her life.
9. Why did Skylar Neese have to die? What was the motivation to kill Skylar Neese?
Allegedly, a secret begins to emerge that the three girls had a sleepover where the victim Skylar had taken photos and videos of Rachel and Shelia during a sexual encounter. Rachel and Shelia felt betrayed and angry because their friend had denounced them like she had. They confronted her in person and began to move further away from her.
Skylar hit back on Twitter, “You do shit like that, which is why I will NEVER fully trust you.”
Secondly, there is also the allegation of jealousy. Skylar Neese and Shelia Eddy have had a close relationship since their childhood. This friendship relationship grew strained when they met Rachel Shoaf in high school. Skylar Neese would have resented seeing Shelia Eddy and Rachel Shoaf become close.
She would have witnessed a sexual relationship between the two young girls during a pajama party. A popular theory is that Rachel Shoaf and Shelia Eddy killed Skylar Neese for fear of their relationship being exposed publicly, but it is presumably false; the two girls posted suggestive photos together on multiple social networks, including on Shelia’s Twitter account where her high school mates could see them.
10. FAQs about the murder of Skylar Neese:
Who is Skylar Neese?
Skylar Neese was born as Skylar Annette Neese. She is the only daughter of Marie and Dave Neese. Her mom worked as an administrative assistant in a cardiology laboratory and Dave Neese as an employee at Walmart. Skylar, at the time of her murder, was studying at Morgantown Public High School with plans to become a criminal lawyer. She had also worked next door to Wendy’s fast-food chain. She was stabbed 50 times by her best friends Shelia Eddy and Rachel Shoaf.
Who is Shelia Eddy?
Teenage killer Shelia Eddy was born as Shelia Rae Eddy in Blacksville, West Virginia. She is also the only child of Tara Clendenen and Greg Eddy. Her parents divorced in 2000, when her father had a car accident which left him disabled due to a traumatic brain injury. In October 2010, her mom Tara and Shelia move to Morgantown, West Virginia with Jim Clendenen, Tara’s new husband.
Who is Rachel Shoaf?
Teenage murderer Rachel Shoaf came into this world on June 10, 1996, as the only daughter of Rusty and Patricia Shoaf. She grew up in Morgantown and attended the same public high school in Morgantown as Shelia Eddy and Skylar Neese.
What is the “Skylar” Law, what is the “Skylar Act”?
The disappearance of Skylar Neese made it possible to put in place a new legislation in West Virginia in order to modify the alert system during the disappearance of a child (AMBER Alert).
In the case of Skylar Neese’s cold blooded murder, the only light is that it led the West Virginia legislature to pass Skylar’s law. It helps agencies quickly issue Amber Alerts when a child is missing, regardless of the circumstances
The AMBER Alert was not triggered during the disappearance of Skylar Neese because the circumstances of the disappearance could not meet the four necessary conditions, namely:
- The child may be in danger of death or serious injury;
- A child is supposed to be abducted;
- The child is under 18 years of age;
- There is enough information to believe that the AMBER Alert will be useful.
To change the operation of the AMBER Alert, the “Skylar” Law or the “Skylar Act” involves immediately triggering public announcements when a child is reported missing and in danger, regardless of whether he/she was supposedly kidnapped.