Chelsea and Travis Cook had divorced after a few years of marriage. Their divorce was final in January. Together, Chelsea and Travis had 3 year old twin boys. They lived in Utah.
They were doing their best to navigate the world of co-parenting as a divorced couple. Things seemed to be going well, but one day that all changed.
After the divorce, 28 year old Travis started dating Lisa Vilate Williams. She was 26 years old. Lisa’s family says that she loved to read. She also had a knack for nursing sick plants back to health.
Lisa moved to American Fork a few years prior in order to take care of her sister. She had been in the hospital with a lung problem that was threatening her life. She luckily recovered, but Lisa decided to stay after she did. She moved in with her two sisters.
The two were very happy together. Lisa was always slightly fearful of Chelsea. Soon after Lisa and Travis started dating, Chelsea began to cause problems in their relationship. Lisa was extremely fearful of Chelsea, but she never expected something as violent as it did to happen.
32 year old Chelsea orchestrated her own version of a nightmare before Christmas.
Skyridge High School
Lisa Williams was loved by everyone who ever encountered her. Friends describe her as having an extremely “loving and nurturing personality.” This is what made Travis so invested in her almost immediately. She was completely different than Chelsea. She made Travis feel whole.
During the six months she was dating Travis, Lisa was working as a bank teller. One of her friends explained that during the entirety of her and Travis’ relationship – she was targeted by his ex-wife. Chelsea would arrive at the bank and cause scenes at Lisa’s place of work.
There was absolutely no reason for this. Chelsea went out of her way to make Lisa miserable. She did everything in her power to embarrass her at work no less. It didn’t stop there though.
Chelsea also bullied Lisa on Instagram. She would make threatening phone calls to Lisa constantly. The calls wouldn’t come from Chelsea’s cellphone though. Instead, she would use the phone at the high school where she worked.
Chelsea worked as a health teacher as Skyride High School. She apparently was engaging and students loved her. She had been there for the past four years.
The school claims they were completely unaware of this behavior. Had they known, she likely would have been fired. Although, there is some speculation about this. Bekah Williams, one of Lisa’s sisters, had called the school and informed them of Chelsea’s behavior. This was in August.
Bekah went on to say, ““it seems to me that nothing was done.”
However, Chelsea’s erratic behavior was not just targeted at Lisa. Apparently, she had a past of causing problems and being violent. Chelsea, felt that life had been unfair to her since her divorce and would often take it out on others.
As we all know, she had been harassing poor Lisa for months. However, she also had other violent behaviors that got so bad authorities were involved.
It was back in October that Chelsea had been involved in a domestic violence case. She was charged with multiple counts of domestic violence, as well as a count of domestic violence in the presence of a child. She had been arrested on October 16th for this.
The charges against her are classified as misdemeanors. The incident took place in Chelsea’s apartment. In front of her children. Chelsea allegedly attacked the man in her home, causing him to suffer minor injuries.
Eventually, in order to get her to stop, he called authorities. The relationship between Chelsea and this man was not disclosed. One can only assume they were dating.
The school Chelsea worked for apparently didn’t know she had been arrested. Teachers are required to report any arrests like this within 48 hours to the superintendent of their school district. Chelsea never did that.
On top of this, the state of Utah does flag teachers that have been arrested through a database of fingerprints. Since Chelsea was charged with a misdemeanor, her fingerprints were not flagged for over a month. The school finally received an alert of Chelsea’s arrest through the fingerprint database system after she was arrested for her latest crime.
Chelsea is still due to appear in court for her misdemeanor charge. Her most recent crime makes this one seem like child’s play. It’s hard to believe she escalated to such deadly behavior so quickly.
Lisa could hardly wait to celebrate the holidays with Travis and his twin boys. It was a Sunday night. She was heading to Travis’ to start decorating for the holidays. After all the boys had been through, Lisa wanted to give them something happy and something to look forward to.
Her plan was to surprise the boys with a popcorn maker, and make decorating the Christmas tree special for them. Travis had shared with Lisa how hard everything had been on the boys. It was especially hard on the twins after witnessing her domestic violence behavior back in October; barely 2 months prior.
Lisa felt it was her job to make Christmas magical for them. Bekah, Lisa’s sister, had spoken to “her an hour or so before it all happened and she was so excited to give those kids something happy.” Lisa really had a heart of gold.
Upon arriving at Travis’s apartment the Christmas cheer began. Lisa popped fresh popcorn for the boys. She turned on Christmas music as they began to decorate the tree. She loved the kids and could hardly wait to start celebrating with them.
Despite the problems she had with Chelsea, she never reported them. She never really spoke about them. She kept it all to herself for the most part. She figured this would only make things more difficult for the children, and that was the last thing she wanted.
“In hindsight, I think the best thing for the kids would have been to call the police every time,” Bekah went on to say about her sister’s decision to not open up about what was going on. Had Lisa reached out to her family, friends, or even Travis, perhaps that Sunday night would not have turned out as brutal as it had.
Bekah also can’t explain how things ended the way they did, especially given the last exchange between Lisa and Chelsea. It actually wasn’t terrible. It was surprising.
Here’s what had happened between Chelsea and Lisa, that will leave you wondering how things escalated
The last conversation Chelsea and Lisa had before that fateful day was surprising. Chelsea had been terrible to Lisa, up until this point. Chelsea had actually ended up thanking Lisa.
Lisa had gone to pick up the twins at daycare. Chelsea thanked her for doing this. Before Lisa went to get the twins, she and Chelsea hadn’t had contact in days. This was due to Thanksgiving. Lisa had gone home to spend the holiday with her own family.
When you read about what Chelsea went and did shortly after this last conversation, it’s going to leave you with a lot of questions. What’s even more curious is that although Chelsea had a domestic violence misdemeanor, that was her only previously worrisome behavior. Aside from that occurrence, she didn’t have a history of violence or doing anything alarming.
One of the twin boys was feeling slightly under the weather one day. Although Travis was equipped to handle it, Chelsea took it upon herself to drop off cold medicine for him. Travis told Chelsea he would meet her in the parking lot to get the medicine.
He did not want Chelsea to enter the apartment. However, Chelsea still somehow got into the apartment, while Travis was waiting for her in the parking lot. Lisa was alone in Travis’ apartment with the boys.
Travis then came up and asked her to leave his home, but she completely refused. This is when things continued to get worse. Chelsea locked herself in the bathroom and called 911. She remained there quite a while. All through this time, Lisa and the twin boys were in the other room decorating the tree.
Travis says eventually after he called 911 on Chelsea, she voluntarily unlocked the door of his bathroom. She then came out, and it looked like she was finally going to leave. Chelsea went to get her coat on her way out of his apartment.
After Chelsea opened the bathroom door, she began to walk towards the door of the apartment to leave. Travis thought she was finally leaving his apartment. It would be over. The holiday cheer would resume.
Next thing he knew though Chelsea reached into her coat and pulled out a gun. She began to fire it at Lisa, who was trying to keep the twins calm while all of the commotion was happening. Chelsea shot Lisa twice in the torso. Travis managed to grab the gun from Chelsea after she had fired off three rounds.
Lisa had fallen backwards onto the couch after being shot. Travis began doing his best to give Lisa CPR until authorities arrived. After Travis grabbed he gun from Chelsea, she just sat down next to the twins as if nothing happened. Even though she had committed a heinous act of violence.
Lisa was transported to a nearby hospital where she later died from her gunshot wounds.
Chelsea is being held at Salt Lake County Jail on $1 million bail. She has been charged with aggravated murder. In addition to this, she was officially fired immediately following her arrest on Monday morning after Skyridge High School heard about the shootings.
Tawny Williams, Lisa’s Mom, took to Facebook to share this about her daughter. “She was so kind, sweet, generous, loving, and brought joy and excitement to every aspect of life,” Tawny posted. “Please share the beauty of her life rather than the monster that ripped her from ours. I am asking that anyone that has posted the picture and article with the evil killer as the subject please remove it and share Lisa’s beauty instead. She was magic, and I want her remembered for how she lived and not for how she was killed.”
Her sister created a GoFundMe to help cover the costs of Lisa’s death: https://www.gofundme.com/in-memory-of-lisa-vilate-williams
Salt Lake County Jail
This Young Mom Got Charged With Manslaughter Because She Refused To Get Her Abused Toddler Son Help After His Intestines Burst
Orange County Jail
Victoria Toth is a 24 year old young mom living in Orlando, Florida with her toddler son Jayce Alexander Martin, who was 2 and a half years old. The two of them lived with Victoria’s live-in boyfriend Jonathan Pursglove, who is 25 years old.
Jonathan was not the biological father of Jayce. His Dad was named Robert Martin and was Victoria’s ex. Jonathan acted as Victoria’s babysitter; watching Jayce for her while she was at work every day.
Victoria’s parents say that her son Jayce was “everything to her.”
However, one July day that statement would all change.
Orlando should be a perfect place to raise a child; there’s Disneyland, warm weather, palm trees, plenty of parks for children to play at and even beaches too. Families from all over the world come to vacation at this spot with their children.
Obituary Photo from Collison Carey Hand Funeral Home
Victoria frequently left her son Jayce with Jonathan while she was at work at Rainforest Cafe, or while she left their house to go run errands.
Jayce and Jonathan got along fine. There was no reason to believe there could be a problem. In fact, this seems like a dream situation: a young Mom’s boyfriend stepping up to help her out with child care so she can work to provide for her son.
One day Victoria came home though, and noticed something wasn’t right with Jayce. Now, police are calling what happened to this poor little guy a “torture case.”
Victoria had told her friends on previous occasions that Jonathan was sometimes harsh when disciplining Jayce. When she tried to interject Jonathon would get violent with her.
Another friend recalls Jonathan saying “he already had one son, and did not need another.”
It turns out, Jonathan had a criminal history and a past full of violence. One of his ex-girlfriends said this about what he did to her:
“He has hit and punched me in my stomach. I also fell down stairs and woke up in the hospital.”
Jonathan was arrested for using a firearm during a drug deal, and he has multiple accusations against him for domestic violence on top of that.
How could Victoria not have known these terrible things about the man she invited to come live with her and her young son? It’s also upsetting Jonathan got violent with her, yet she still let him live there.
Orlando Police Department
On July 15, Victoria thought Jayce seemed lethargic. Something was definitely off with him acting like this.
She described Jayce as a child who “enjoyed picking flowering, riding scooters and going on adventures with his dog.”
Therefore, the lack of interest in doing any of that was out of the ordinary. Also, any 2 year old toddler should be bouncing around with energy and eager to play and do things.
In the next two days she noticed Jayce seemed to only be getting worse. He was very lethargic at this point and had no interest in doing anything at all. Her family suggested that Victoria take Jayce to the hospital.
Even Jayce’s Dad told her to take him in to see a doctor.
Victoria refused to take him to the emergency room.
She also did not bring him to his check up with his pediatrician.
Jayce’s condition continued to get increasingly worse over the next few days. Why would this Mom not take her child in to see a medical professional when something is clearly wrong and off with her child?
It’s heartbreaking and upsetting that Jayce suffered while his Mom watched and didn’t do anything to get him the help he so desperately needed.
Victoria continued to just stand by and watch as Jayce’s condition worsen and he just got sicker and sicker with every passing day.
He was unable to walk, or even eat. He couldn’t play. He was violently and uncontrollably vomiting. Still Victoria refused to seek medical attention.
“Over a period of two to three days, [Toth] continued to watch Jayce suffer and by doing so, tortured him, in that he was unable to walk or eat and excessively vomited,” The Sentinel reports a police report said about this dire situation.
“Yet again, [Toth] still failed to seek medical attention explaining she did not want medical personnel to judge her and because [Pursglove] told her not to.”
So Victoria didn’t take her son to a doctor, or an emergency room, because she didn’t want to be judged and her boyfriend told her not to take him, that’s right.
On July 18 at 6:30 a.m. Victoria noticed that Jayce was unresponsive.
She called 911 and explained to them that her “son has been dehydrating, he’s throwing up” and she needed an ambulance.
Authorities came to the Washington Shores house, only to discover Jayce in a horrible state, with Jonathan attempting to give him CPR.
And this all could have been avoided and this poor little boy would have been ok if his Mom had only done a few things for him that she completely failed to do.
Authorities entered Victoria’s home and found Jayce covered with a towel and lying on his back flat on the floor.
He was clearly malnourished, covered in bruises, and surrounded by vomit.
Upon entering his bedroom authorities discovered more vomit, and fist-sized holes in the wall. This only indicated to them that there was a fight at the house recently.
In the bathroom, police state that they found a “broken toilet lid and broken toilet seat’ that appeared to have been cleaned recently, indicating a ‘recent struggle or fight”.
They pronounced the poor little boy dead at the scene.
It was also discovered that Jayce had trauma in his abdomen, and that his intestines burst. How could this have happened?
Here’s what happened to Jayce
Victoria told police that Jayce was a “brat”. She explained he had so many bruises because he required daily physical discipline. She also admitted to police that she slammed his head in a door.
The coroner listed Jayce’s cause of death as “blunt force trauma to the abdomen” in the reports.
Police say Jayce may have been struck with a closed fist or had been “sucker punched”. Someone put their hands on this child for him to have sustained the kind of severe internal damage that he did. Police are also saying Jonathan probably beat Jayce with a broken toilet seat they found in the bathroom.
Victoria had been charged with Aggravated Manslaughter of a Child. In the affidavit for her arrest, it says she tortured Jayce and that he would still be alive if she had just gotten him medical attention.
Steven Toth, her father, said this about her to the Orlando Sentinel:
“Not only did she lose the best thing that ever came into her life, she’s sitting behind bars charged with his death.”
“I know beyond a shadow of a doubt she would never do anything to hurt that boy.”