Thomas Trutschel/Getty Images
- Chance Seneca of Louisiana was sentenced to 45 years in federal prison on Wednesday, DOJ said.
- In June 2020, Seneca used Grindr, a gay dating app, to lure and kidnap an 18-year-old.
- Seneca mirrored the acts of serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer and had plans to eat his victims, DOJ said.
A Louisiana man was sentenced to 45 years in federal prison for kidnapping and attempting to murder an 18-year-old gay teen he lured using Grindr, an LGBTQ dating app, the Justice Department announced Wednesday.
According to the DOJ, Chance Seneca, who was 19 when he carried out the attack, was inspired by the acts committed by serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer, whose violent exploits were recently depicted in a Netflix show.
“Seneca intentionally targeted gay men, as Dahmer had done. Seneca had also intended to eat and preserve the bodies of his victims, as Dahmer had done,” the Justice Department wrote.
Around May 2020, Seneca began to talk with then-18-year-old Holden White through Grindr. Seneca told authorities in an interview that he saw the dating application as a “hunting ground,” according to a complaint. The two also communicated through Snapchat.
During the course of their contact, Seneca “pretended that he was interested in meeting (Holden White) for recreational or romantic purposes,” the complaint stated. “But Sencea’s true purpose was to seize, inveigle, kidnap, abduct, and hold (White) for the unlawful purpose of killing and dismembering him for his own gratification.”
On June 20, 2020, Seneca picked up White and drove to his father’s isolated home in Lafayette, Louisiana.
It was there when Seneca “proposed a sexual encounter” and convinced White to put on handcuffs as a “dark joke,” according to the complaint.
Seneca then strangled White from behind with a belt until he was unconscious. Afterward, he pulled White “into a bathtub, stripped him of his clothing, and prepared to begin the dismemberment process.”
“To make sure that H.W. was dead, Seneca hit H.W. in the back of the head with a hammer and stabbed him in the neck with an ice pick,” the court documents stated.”Seneca also used a Bowie knife to slit H.W.’s wrist.”
Seneca later told authorities that his plan was to preserve White’s hands but that he couldn’t pull through with the act after seeing the exposed bones of White’s wrists.
Seneca called 911 to the Lafayette home “in a self-described effort to be put in a mental institution,” the complaint stated.
White survived the attack but sustained injuries that put him in a coma for three days, according to NBC News.
In its announcement of Seneca’s sentence, the Justice Department said Sencea acknowledged he had a “compulsive murder-fantasy.”
“Seneca had become fixated with the idea of killing gay men, and this fascination led him to spend months designing a murder-kidnapping scheme that mirrored the murders of gay men committed by the notorious serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer,” the release stated.
Seneca was indicted in March 2021 on three charges: hate crime with an attempt to murder, kidnapping, and possession of a firearm. He reached a plea agreement on September 2022, which dropped the hate crime charge, by pleading guilty to kidnapping.
“No one should ever be subjected to the type of horrendous actions that this defendant inflicted upon the victim in this case,” US Attorney Brandon B. Brown for the Western District of Louisiana said in the Justice Department’s press release.
In an interview with The New York Times, White said that he hoped for a harsher sentence.
“It’s not what I asked for,” White told The Times. “Life is what I asked for.”
A spokesperson for Grindr did not return a request for comment from Insider.