A Pennsylvania man who confessed to trying to rape his 14-year-old cousin before stabbing her 160 times and shooting her in the head will spend the rest of his life in prison for last year’s murder.
According to WXTF, Colin Haag, 21, pleaded guilty Thursday to first-degree murder, attempted rape, and related charges in the March 2018 slaying of Autumn Bartle, who died three days after the unthinkable attack. Haag was staying with the victim at his grandfather’s Croydon home, where he carried out the murder.
A Bucks County court heard the 911 call placed by Bartle’s mother after finding her bleeding inside the home. The Intelligencer reported that grievously injured teen can be heard moaning in the background as her mother pleads for her to recover.
Haag reportedly fled the scene but Bensalem police located him near State Road with a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the neck. WXTF reported that officers found him in possession of a backpack that contained two handguns, which were reported stolen from the victim’s home, and a notebook—stained with Bartle’s blood—containing the following inscription: “This the last of Slim. That’s all you get, and it’s the end for me.”
The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that Bartle’s cause of death was a gunshot wound to the head and the bullet matched the.380 Haag had stolen from the home. Prosecutors noted that the entire home was covered in blood, calling attention to a bloody handprint on the bathroom window where the teen tried to escape.
According to the news outlet, Deputy District Attorney Jennifer Schorn said Haag murdered Bartle after she “valiantly” fought him off during the attempted rape. Schorn noted that the teen sustained injuries to her hands as she fought for her life.
Defense attorneys argued that Haag endured a tumultuous childhood, which included his mother taking her own life while on the phone with him. While prosecutors claimed Haag exhibited a lack of remorse after Bartle’s murder, defense attorneys asserted that his 71 IQ might’ve prevented him from expressing grief or guilt, according to The Intelligencer.
Public defender Deborah Weinmann characterized the 21-year-old as living in a fantasy world where he aspired to be a gangster rapper. Weinmann said her reasoning wasn’t an excuse but might explain what caused last year’s slaying.
Haag’s ineligible for parole but avoided the death penalty by agreeing to plead guilty.
“The fear she must have felt is unimaginable,” Judge Wallace H. Bateman Jr. said in court. “The brutality of this case is apparent to everyone sitting here, and it’s almost indescribable.”
[Featured image: Colin Haag/Bucks County District Attorney’s Office; Autumn Bartle/Facebook]