December 5, 2013

N.H. man who killed parents as teen earns conditional parole

Jeffrey Dingman, who was 14 when he and his brother shot their parents, must first complete counseling and learn how to live outside prison.

By Holly Ramer
The Associated Press

CONCORD, N.H. – A New Hampshire man who has spent more than half his life in prison for killing his parents when he was 14 will be freed if he completes counseling and learns the skills he’ll need to return to society, a state parole board ruled Thursday.

click image to enlarge

Jeffrey Dingman, center, arrives with his lawyers for a parole board meeting at the New Hampshire State Prison on Thursday in Concord. Dingman was 14 when he and his older brother, Robert, shot their parents to death. The parole board said they were worried that he lacks the life skills to succeed in society but granted him parole if he completes counseling and learns the skills he’ll need to return to society.

The Associated Press

Jeffrey Dingman was barely 14 when he and his older brother, Robert, shot their parents to death as they arrived home from work on Feb. 9, 1996, a Friday afternoon. Testifying against his brother, Jeffrey said the boys hid the bodies in the attic and basement, spent the weekend playing and partying with friends and then returned to school on Monday. They were arrested after their parents’ worried co-workers called police.

On Thursday, the parole board members said they were pleased that Jeffrey, now 31, had done well in prison but worried that he lacks the life skills to succeed in society because he went to jail so young. Had the board granted him immediate parole, he would have been released on Feb. 7. When he completes the counseling and meets the other terms of the conditional parole, he’ll be released.

Robert Dingman, 17 at the time, is serving a life sentence after being convicted of first-degree murder and conspiracy charges. Jeffrey, who had turned 14 just two weeks before the killings, got 30 years to life in a plea deal that made him eligible for parole now. The state parole board was considering his case for the first time Thursday.

During Robert’s 1997 trial, Jeffrey Dingman calmly admitted shooting his parents first but said his brother instigated the killings and finished off both parents, taunting each before firing the fatal shots. He said Robert asked their father, already shot once, “How about another one?” and told his mother “Die, bitch!” before shooting her in the head.

Prosecutors said Robert chafed under his parents’ rules and curfews, and Jeffrey described being yelled at repeatedly by his mother and hit by his father over bad grades. But family members described Eve and Vance Dingman, both 40, as devoted parents and said the boys were not abused.

Robert Dingman did not testify at his trial. His lawyers presented no witnesses but argued in opening and closing statements that that Jeffrey fired all the shots and then blamed his brother to save himself.

Were you interviewed for this story? If so, please fill out our accuracy form

Send question/comment to the editors




Further Discussion

Here at OnlineSentinel.com we value our readers and are committed to growing our community by encouraging you to add to the discussion. To ensure conscientious dialogue we have implemented a strict no-bullying policy. To participate, you must follow our Terms of Use.

Questions about the article? Add them below and we’ll try to answer them or do a follow-up post as soon as we can. Technical problems? Email them to us with an exact description of the problem. Make sure to include:
  • Type of computer or mobile device your are using
  • Exact operating system and browser you are viewing the site on (TIP: You can easily determine your operating system here.)