One Teen Dead, Another Arrested After Facebook Feud Ends in Stabbing

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SCRANTON -- Police are investigating the death of a teenager in Scranton.

According to police, Kayla VanWert, 18, of Scranton died at the hospital Sunday night from stab wounds.

Police have charged Cathleen Boyer, 16, of Scranton with aggravated assault, simple assault, reckless endangerment, and tampering with evidence.

According to a police report, Boyer stabbed VanWert in the neck and chest just before 10 p.m. Sunday.

The police report says VanWert and Boyer were in a heated argument on Facebook. VanWert then left her home to confront Boyer in the 800 block of McKenna Court. Boyer then allegedly stabbed VanWert in the neck and chest and the knife broke. Detectives later found pieces of a broken knife in the alley.

VanWert died at Regional Hospital, just two blocks away.

Investigators are not saying what the dispute was about.

Monday afternoon, the coroner ruled VanWert's death a homicide.

Lackawanna County District Attorney Shane Scanlon said he'll likely add more serious charges now that the ruled death has been ruled a homicide.

Police say Boyer confessed to the stabbing death on Facebook, posting: “I’m wrong I’ll admit it... Got to face the consequences... No remorse.”

VanWert was the mother of a 16-month-old boy. The child is now staying with his grandmother.

Members of Patel family from India own two homes near McKenna Court. They say they saw a young man carrying VanWert out of the alley, but they didn’t know she had been stabbed. Now family members say the violence makes them nervous about their neighborhood.

“We have lived here for seven years and nothing happened, this kind of thing, earlier. So this is the first time we saw it, face to face, and the family here is scared,” said Mulik Patel.


  • Mindy

    if you bring a knife to a fight, the fate of the fight was determined already and you already know that someone is leaving dead. a baby that will never know his mother. heartbreaking. a girl paid for her life right here in my hometown and not just her, shootings on my block all the time. its horrifying . end this and send this kid for life, no question, there is nothing a lawyer can even defend her with here , no fight to be fought for her, she needs to go to jail FOREVER

  • Kristen Marie Lapsansky

    Wow what happened to being able to protect yourself when someone comes to your property for a fight.. pathetic.. I’m sorry but if someone stepped foot on my property, I have a .40 cal. Smith and Wesson that’s going to be aimed with a laser to center mass. You do not heed to my warnings I have all rights to shoot/ stab/ or throw Damn rocks…

  • Sick of the crap in Scranton

    First of all, you intgerview someone who thought Scranton was safe? What are they living in a bubble? Scranton is what WilkesBarre was 10 years ago, so it’s only going to get worse.
    This is how ridiculous our world has gotten, that two peopel would meet up to fight each other over words on FaceBook – Parents really don’t teach their kids crap anymore, do they? Becuase it’s not like someone getting in your face, this was all because of something on a screen, but we don’t teach our kids any better anymore.
    I feel sorry for the victim and her family, but seriously, neither one could possibly have been angels, because any decent person, especially if you have kids, wouldn’t have even bothered to meet up in an alley, I’m sure she wasn’t going their to “talk it out”, so the victim knew what she was getting into and they both were going to fight.
    As for the accused, just more delightful examples of the pride and joy of Scranton, because there are a crap ton of kids like this in the city. This more than likely goes on all the time, but you only hear about it when it is something fatal. And why? Because parents don’t parent their kids anymore and they don’t care or bother to know what their kids are doing. The kids are too sucked up into the whole technology and FaceBook thing and this happens in a lot of places. Unfortunately, it’s alway seems to be certain types of peopel that get into these situation all the time on the news. You can say I am wrong, but just look at the news and you tell me what type of people you are seeing on the news doing this crap? Usually not real outstanding people of the town they live in, and when they usually get interviewed for a comment they usually sound like trailer trash kids with attitudes because they still feel they are right in what they did, even as they are handed their life in prison sentence. And all the while their now concerned families wind up on the news speaking out on how much of an angel the victim and the accused were – if they were so sweet and innocent, they wouldn’t have arranged to fight and there definately wouldn’t have been weapons involved.

  • Rainbow warrior

    Shut Facebook down. Colossal waste of time – I deleted my account, got so sick of the petty BS. And now this. Get rid of it, your lives will be better, trust me.

  • west side love

    This is a sad story. Two young lives destroyed by words over the internet. Bullying isn’t cool. Instigation isn’t cool either. Probably some mean words being exchanged over what one does with their live. Ugh these girls need to come together and have each others backs. It’s Scranton!!! There are zero legit bad females around here. There isn’t one person around here living like Kim k. These girls are acting like they have no brains. Goodbye

  • John

    She was stabbed in the neck, and chest…pretty sure that is what killed her. What is the autopsy for…isn’t is obvious what killed her? : /

    • Joseph Smith

      As a practical matter, most “official” autopsies (like that of the instant case) are obviously completely pointless. As an impractical matter, however, they serve an important occult purpose: The’ye a Satanic, barbaric ritual that expresses consummate state control/authority over its subjects’ bodies (just like the state also asserts authority over their thoughts/souls, their material assets, their “privacy”, etc).
      In order to carry out the barbaric ritual under color of “law”, there never seems to be shortage of perverse, generally ghoulish, morally incompetent, self-selected people to act as official “coroner” for the state.

  • Girl w/a heart

    You people sound so damn ignorant!!! Two young lives wasted for what? Could’ve been your daughter your sister..would you find that amusing? Shut up and grow up!!!

    • Robyn

      EXACTLY, girl w/a heart!! It’s pretty sad just how MANY ppl DON’T have a heart anymore!! That’s why the world is the way it is today!!

    • Bolus supporter

      Who cares.. She murdered someone and is a piece of trash… Wnep should release the parents names and occupations as well so we know where this useless thug came from.

      • Sakinah Thoroughgood

        No why should have family be held responsible for her actions,they didn’t tell her to go Kill this Girl no so ppl can harass the family,the family has nothing to do with her actions,who knows she probably was one of those kids who didn’t listen to her mother,I wish someone would come to my House after my child did some bullshit..

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