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Crime News Homicide for the Holidays

The Most Disturbing Summer Holiday Crimes Turn July 4 Celebrations into Nightmares

Specials days set aside for fireworks, parades, and festive gatherings can tragically be marked by murder, as seen on Homicide for the Holidays.

By Joe Dziemianowicz

Summertime holidays are famous for fun, fireworks, and festive red, white, and blue bunting. But these special occasions can also be marked by murder. 

How to Watch

Catch up on Homicide for the Holidays on Peacock or the Oxygen App.

Oxygen True Crime’s Homicide for the Holidays chronicles these kind of shocking cases through in-depth interviews with investigators and people close to the victims. Upcoming episodes cover a woman who went missing after a 4th of July party and a woman found dead in a pond after she failed to show up for a summer celebration.

Here's what to know about summer's most disturbing crimes.

Crimes Heat Up in the Summer

Independence Day sees noteworthy gun violence in major urban areas. More than 230 people were fatally shot in shootings over the Fourth of July weekend in 2021, CNN reported. Victims included a professional golfer shot at a country club in Atlanta and two Ohio teens who were killed at a holiday celebration that turned violent. 

RELATED: Santa Claus Murders, A New Year’s Eve Nightmare And Other Shocking Holiday Slayings

In New York City, “more than 50 people were shot — at least seven of them fatally — during a bloody outbreak of gun violence in the Big Apple over the Fourth of July weekend,” the New York Post reported on July 5, 2022

Summer Holiday Homicides

Homicide for the Holidays has previously looked at shocking fall and winter events, including a New Year’s Day shooting, a Christmas Eve massacre, and a Thanksgiving family annihilation. 

RELATED: ‘I’d Never Seen A Crime Scene That Bloody’: Man Brutally Butchers His Parents On Thanksgiving

The first episodes of Season 5 focus on disturbing summer holiday crimes – and there have been many. A 1993 Memorial Day spree in Georgia left three dead. The horrific July 4 mass shooting in Illinois killed seven and wounded 48 others. A Labor Day 2021 spree in Las Vegas ended with three victims.

What to Know About Homicide for the Holidays Season 5 Premiere

Season 5 of Homicide for the Holidays opens with a case that occurred on the 4th of July. 

Megan Barroso, a 20-year-old Moorpark College student in California spent the evening of July 4, 2001 with friends watching fireworks displays. But in the early hours of July 5, after leaving a friend’s house in Newbury Park, her bullet-riddled car was found abandoned on a concrete divider of New Los Angeles Avenue, The Los Angeles Times reported.

Megan was missing for weeks, but then, a break came when someone was arrested for allegedly robbing their neighbor. The discovery of multiple disturbing videotapes, as well as crucial DNA evidence led to a prime suspect – and ultimately, Megan's body.

To learn more about what happened, watch the premiere of Homicide for the Holidays on Oxygen True Crime on Saturday, June 17 at 8/7c.