For many teenagers and young adults, spring break is meant to be a week of excitement, involving drinking, partying, and hook-ups. It is a chance to let loose and let the stress of college or the workforce go.
However, sometimes that wildness takes a nightmare turn. Not everybody always makes it home after heading to an exotic location to party. Here are some of the most famous cases of murders during Spring Break.
On March 18, 2021, the body of 24-year-old Christine Englehardt was found in a South Beach Miami hotel room. Surveillance video showed Englehardt with two men around 1 a.m. that morning, according to 6 ABC. Englehardt had been drugged and raped by her assailants, police said.
The suspects were later identified as Evoire Collier and Dorian Taylor, who were arrested and accused of sexual battery and burglary. In addition, the duo is accused of stealing Englehardt’s cellphone and credit cards once she became unconscious.
The suspects allegedly gave the victim a “green pill.” They were later seen on surveillance video helping a barely conscious Englehardt walk to her hotel room.
Police are still investigating whether Englehardt died from an overdose from a pill that may have been a Percocet or from another cause.
Susan Jacques and nine of her high school classmates took a trip to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, for spring break. Unfortunately, two weeks later, on April 29, 1986, her remains were found almost 35 miles away from the motel she was residing at. According to the South Florida Sun Sentinel, Jacques had left in the middle of the night to take a stroll on the beach.
However, others claim that she left to go dancing and drinking with some friends she met at another motel.
Jacques’s case remains a mystery 36 years later.
Brittanee Drexel, 17, was last seen on April 25, 2009, leaving her hotel in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. She was seen walking out the front doors and never returned. A massive manhunt began for Drexel, who was visiting the popular tourist town from New York during spring break.
Her phone was tracked to nearby Georgetown County, South Carolina, but she was never found.
An alleged witness told the Myrtle Beach Sun News that he saw Drexel being kept in a “stash house.” There, she was raped and eventually murdered. Her body was then dumped in an alligator swamp.
To date, Drexel’s remains have not been found and nobody has been accused of her murder. Drexel’s mom continues to hunt for information about what happened to her daughter.
While on spring break with friends in Matamoros, Tamaulipas, Mexico, the University of Texas at Austin student Mark Kilroy was kidnapped. The 21-year-old and several of his friends decide to take a trip to South Padre Island, a typical spring break destination for many college students. As reported by Rolling Stone, the group agreed to visit Matamoros during the trip, which is where Kilroy was last seen. On March 14, 1989, Kilroy disappeared as they made their way across the Rio Grande bridge to get back to the American border.
It wasn’t until a month later that a drug bust led to the discovery of Kilroy’s whereabouts. A member of a drug gang and cult known as “Little Serafin” admitted to partaking in the murder and dismemberment of the missing college student. Kilroy had been sacrificed by Little Serafin as part of a ritual practice apart of the religion “palo mayombe.” His murderer, Adolfo Constanzo, beheaded Kilroy with a machete.
The cult had kidnapped and murdered several people across Matamoros and surrounding areas as part of their sacrificial practices.
Before facing authorities, Constanzo ordered one of his members to kill him. In 1993, members of Little Serafin were found guilty on several charges relating to Kilroy’s murder.
Natalee Holloway was an 18-year-old high school senior from Mountain, Alabama. As part of the celebration for her upcoming graduation, Holloway and several other seniors traveled to Aruba. On May 29, the nightmare began when Holloway met Joran van der Sloot, a 17-year-old residing Noord, which was only a few miles away from Aruba.
During the final night of their trip, Holloway and her friends visited Carlos ‘n Charlie’s bar, where van der Sloot eventually showed up to hang out with her. According to Biography, Holloway and van der Sloot enjoyed drinking and dancing together at the club. When the bar closed at 1 a.m., After that, Holloway was last seen leaving in a car with van der Sloot and two other men. Holloway was never seen again.
The following day, as Holloway’s classmates prepared to head back to Alabama, Holloway was a no-show. When they were unable to locate her in her hotel room, they notified her parents, who immediately traveled to Aruba.
Deemed as the initial suspect, Van der Sloot claimed he dropped Holloway off at her hotel and did not harm her, but many believe he may have killed her and hid her body. In May 2010, van der Sloot murdered a woman named Stephany Flores in his hotel room. He is currently serving 28 years in prison.
Despite over $3 million spent in search efforts to find Holloway’s remains, they have never been found. In 2012, Holloway’s father received approval to declare her legally dead, though her mother, Beth Twitty, opposed it.