'Juggalo' Culture May Be At Center Of Bethany Murder
Havonnah Johnson, News 9
UPDATE: Cody Perez, a man the Bethany Police Department once sought in connection with the murder of a young woman whose body was found dismembered and stuffed in a duffel bag, has been cleared as a person of interest.
BETHANY, Oklahoma -- Cody Perez, a person of interest in the Carina Saunders murder, has a lengthy criminal record and is a self professed "Juggalo." Juggalos are followers of the Detroit-based rap group Insane Clown Posse ( ICP), known for violent lyrics.
Saunders has no known connections to the band, but Perez does not hide his affiliations. ICP performs songs like "I Stab People," "Suicide Hotline" and "Another Love Song." Their fans have been accused of acting out the violent lyrics.
"I could love you and treat you with class and have babies falling all out your a**, but thinking about that I feel I'd rather kill you," are the lyrics from "Another Love Song."
Criminologist Howard Kurtz says the person who dismembered Carina Saunders' 19-year-old body wants attention.
"It's not usual that a person is dismembered. And when they are, it's usually because they are trying to hide the body, not where it could be easily found," Kurtz said. "It's possible they did it to scare people."
Saunders' body was found Thursday behind the Homeland grocery store in Bethany. She was stuffed into a duffel bag.
Perez may be on the run, but on his Facebook page, the repeat offender writes I'm a muthaf**** Juggalo and have a little Juggalo in training and two more on the way."
Is the band to blame?
"The kids that show up to the concerts they think of it as something much more than entertainment, so there is a great danger to that," Kurtz said.
Juggalos claim they aren't a gang, but a family.
"We have a lot of youth that are adrift in our society. They are looking for meaning and trying to connect with something," Kurtz said.
Saunders' Facebook pictures talk of the end being near and although police won't say how she is connected to Perez, Kurtz says the pictures are alarming.
Anyone who can assist in the case is asked to call Bethany police at 405-789-2323.