There was a point in time when the Britton family — Dennis, Marlene, and their three children, Sherry, Brian, and Jason — was considered happy, especially since they led a relatively comfortable life. However, all that changed in the early morning hours of March 22, 1989, when 16-year-old self-styled “Rambo” Brian Britton shot every single family member before trying to place the blame on a masked intruder. He wasn’t successful, though, as profiled in ID’s ‘Evil Lives Here: The Horror I Don’t Remember,’ because his elder sister, Sherry, survived. So now let’s find out more about her, shall we?
Who is Sherry Britton?
Although just two years older than Brian, Sherry Britton never had a close relationship with her brother owing to their drastically different interests, hobbies, and overall passions. While she seemingly had typical teenage-girl experiences, she remembers him going through various obsessions over the years, whether it be with war films, such as ‘Rambo,’ the military, or heavy weapons. Sherry admittedly didn’t think much about it at the time, despite noticing that Brian’s behavior was gradually becoming a little erratic, which is why she never expected to lose everything and everyone because of him.
On that fateful morning, Brian used his 20-gauge firearm to shoot their 44-year-old father twice in the face, their 42-year-old mother twice in the chest, and his 18-year-old sister once each in the head and abdomen. Jason, who was just 8½ at the time, had not only taken a single bullet, but his brother had also bashed his head with the butt of the gun — he sadly died from his injuries hours later at a nearby hospital. Thus, when Sherry was ultimately told the news upon waking following medical help, despite the physical wounds, it was the fact she was now all alone due to Brian’s heinous action that hurt her the most.
Where is Sherry Britton Now?
Sherry Britton, unfortunately, still lives in fear that her brother, Brian, might return to finish what he started more than 33 years ago. Hence, she has been continuously fighting to keep him behind bars. Brian pleaded guilty in exchange for a single sentence of 25 years to life with the possibility of parole, which means he first became eligible back in 2013 and has been denied six times. “Honestly, Brian should have received three [consecutive] 25-to-life sentences, and then however many years for my attempted murder…,” Sherry said. “Had that been the case, I would never have to worry about him getting out.”
According to a 2017 petition by Sherry to keep Brian in prison, he has never explained his motives, shown any remorse, or reached out to her since he has been behind bars. That’s despite his assertion that he’ll always be her brother and love her “no matter what happened or who did it” in the letter Brian wrote her in October 1989 to deny responsibility. “The only reason he admitted to the crimes was that he found out that I was alive,” she explained in the petition. “His intent on that fateful morning was to kill his entire family, but I survived.”
Coming to her current standing, from what we can tell, Sherry has moved on with her life to the best of her abilities while also continuing to do everything in her power to keep Brian in state custody. She has to lobby for it every two years because New York law requires the parole board to reconsider an inmate’s situation after that period, but her desire for justice and her fears keep her motivated. After all, the Poughkeepsie native, who goes by Sherry Shafer these days, not only has to think about herself anymore, but she also has to consider the safety of her family, especially her children.
Read More: Where Is Brian Britton Now?