Gwinnett County

Teens who killed grandparents, threw party in house sentenced to life in prison

GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. — A judge sent two teenagers to prison for life after police say they killed two grandparents, locked up their bodies and threw a party in the house.

Channel 2's Gwinnett County Bureau Chief Tony Thomas was the only reporter in the courtroom as one of the teenagers described his own actions as "evil."

Johnny Rider, who confessed to both murders, pleaded for forgiveness and quoted Scripture as the judge sent him and his girlfriend to prison.

Rider and his now former girlfriend Cassie Bjorge blame each other for the plot to kill her grandparents and attack other family members last year.

19-year-old confessed killer apologizes, quote scripture

Seventeen-year-old Bjorge refused to say a word in court, but 19-year-old Rider said a lot.

“Please, I beg you all, forgive me for what I have done,” Rider said. “For it is written, if you forgive.”

Rider admitted he needs a lot of forgiveness after he and Cassie Bjorge beat, stabbed and slit the throats of her grandparents, Randall and Wendy Bjorge, last April.

“I know what I have done is abominable and evil and is deserving of hellfire,” Rider said. “I would like to express my deepest apologies to the Bjorge family. I'm so sorry for the pain and grief I have caused all of you.”

Teens killed couple, threw party in the home

Prosecutors say the teens poured bleach over the grandparents’ bodies, sealed the doors of the Lawrenceville-area home with caulk to hide the stench, then ordered take out and partied with friends in the home for days.

In court, Cassie Bjorge cried and Rider stared straight ahead as the Bjorge family described the loss.


“I miss my mom and dad,” Chris Bjorge said.

“My heart is still broken,” Sylvia Bjorge said.

Authorities say Cassie Bjorge had been living with her grandparents, but was fighting with them and wanted revenge.

Wendy Bjorge’s final text

In court, Sylvia Bjorge described the last communication anyone had with the grandparents.

“I’m going to bed soon. Maybe tomorrow will be better. All I can do is hope for the best and expect the worst. It shouldn’t be this hard for any of us,” Wendy Bjorge texted Sylvia Bjorge before she went to sleep.

Police say as Wendy Bjorge sent that text, she had no idea her granddaughter and boyfriend were hiding outside, waiting to come in and attack.

“Their devotion was so profound it makes this betrayal even more devastating,” Sylvia Bjorge said.

Moments after the text was sent, police believe the two teens went up the stairs, beat the grandparents with their fists and a tire iron, then stabbed them to death.

Judge calls case the worst she’s ever seen

Judge Debra Turner described the case as one of the worst she's ever dealt with, but didn’t spend a lot of time talking to the admitted killers.

“I'm not sure I’ve ever imagined such a well-planned, despicable, heinous act to be committed by two such young people,” she said. “The heartless and depraved nature of what the two of you did says to me it’s not worth my time.”

After Rider quoted scripture and Cassie Bjorge refused to say anything, both teens were sentenced to a negotiated two life sentences with the chance for parole in 60 years.

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