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The Murder of Courtney Sconce

Jul 05, 2021

When I lived in Sacramento I worked for a City ran recreation program. The program was on elementary school campuses and we'd provide fun stuff for kids to do before and after school as well as all summer long. One of the campuses I was at, I interacted with a 10 year old boy named Justin. Justin was cute, he was this tough looking little white boy that wore muscle shirts and had a tail. You know those funky strands of hairs boys wore to look cool? Many of the little girls, and maybe some of the little boys swooned over Justin. I think it was the muscle shirts with his scrawny arms. Other than his rough appearance, he was a sweet boy and kind to nearly all the other kids. His dad was a state prosecutor. His mom was a stay at home mom but she was starting to ail with cancer. His mom was a drinker and his dad controlling. In time, Justin lost interest in the things he used to love and spent most of his time in the confines of his home. He no longer wanted to associated with friends or family. He became a lone wolf.

Years later, I learned Justin had been involved in a crime. It was a horrific crime too. Sweet little Justin had grown up to abduct, rape and murder a 13 year old girl. The girl was Courtney Sconce from Rancho Cordova. Justin was driving around when he happened upon Courtney, who was walking to the store after school one November day in 2000. Two days prior to Justin kidnapping Courtney, the FBI had visited his home and seized a huge collection of child pornography he had on his computer. Justin at the age of 19 was spiraling into a life of crime and perversions. He was mentally ill. He was not getting help.

After Justin abducted Courtney, he drove her miles away to the Feather River in Sutter County. He found a unoccupied area, dragged Courtney from his car and proceeded to rape her...twice. He then realized this little girl could identify him if he let her free. He knew he must kill her and he proceeded to strangle Courtney to death leaving her body partially naked. He himself was fully naked when he was discovered lying near a bush along the river by a couple of guys in a truck. Spooked, Justin got into his car and took off. Soon after Courtney's deceased body was found and witnesses told the police about the black BMW Justin had been driving. Justin had left an Adidas sun visor and sunglasses behind with his DNA.

Silently making a quick appearance at Courtney's Memorial Service, Justin fled to New Mexico. After investigating for 8 months, police were able to identify Justin Weinberger as the a suspect in Courtney Sconce's murder. Soon California law enforcement were able to extradite Justin back to Sacramento. Justin pleaded guilty, requested no trial, and went before the judge asking for the death penalty. The judge responded with giving Justin a life without parole sentence as well as an additional 21 years for the kidnapping and rape of Courtney. This year, the 21 years has been served and Justin will begin his life sentence.

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