Monday, August 30, 2010

Maysville, NC: Officials release details on murder-suicide

August 29, 2010 8:37 AM
Updated at 2:51 p.m. to include additional information

MAYSVILLE — A neighbor’s grim discovery of a murder-suicide Saturday night shattered the usual serenity of a tight-knit White Oak River Road community.

Peter Terrance Moonan, 62, shot 63-year-old Karen Ann Rooney twice in the upper torso and then shot himself in the head at around 6 p.m., authorities said.

They had been a couple for the past 16 years. They purchased 1689 White Oak River Road together in 2002, according to Onslow County Tax Office records.

They split up in February. She remained in their home and he moved in with family in Carteret County. There is no record of any past domestic problems between them, said Onslow County Sheriff’s Maj. Donnie Worrell.

A Facebook profile registered to Rooney recently announced her intention to marry another man.

A neighbor, Velda Bynum said Moonan and Rooney fit in well in their small community.

“Rooney was very good to my grandchildren,” Bynum said.

One of Bynum’s grandsons went to Rooney’s residence to introduce his new wife to Rooney when through the back door he saw Moonan sitting in a chair, covered in blood. He first thought Moonan had an accident and called 911, but quickly realized what had happened.

“He didn’t see Karen,” Robert Bynum said of his son. “Thank God.”

Rooney was shot while she lay on a love seat, authorities said, adding that autopsies were expected today.

The Bynum family, who live across the road from where Rooney did, sat under their carport Sunday morning reflecting about Saturday evening’s events and the years they had known Rooney.

They said neighbors on their stretch of White Oak River Road look out for one another as well as each other’s pets. Robert Bynum said it was not unusual for Rooney to have dog food on hand just in case a neighbor’s animal came around.

Velda Bynum said Rooney was “a loving, caring person who loved the beach and gardening.”

Rooney’s home is landscaped with conk shells, solar lights and a large vegetable garden. A screened porch looks out over a sylvan backyard.

“A family member of Mr. Moonan told investigator’s that Mr. Moonan had been depressed lately, but had not displayed any signs that they felt he could have been a danger to anyone,” Worrell said.

Moonan’s brother, Peletier resident Jim Moonan, said his brother was a basically a good guy.

“I know he helped his neighbors out a lot when they needed it,” he said.

After Bynum’s grandson called 911, investigators arrived and stayed through the night processing the scene. A lone blue latex glove balled up in the gravel driveway and gurney drag marks were evidence visible outside the home that a crime had occurred. Moonan’s white Volkswagen and Rooney’s gray Saturn were parked side-by-side along the edge of the driveway.

The yellow porch bulb remained illuminated.

Updated at 1:03 p.m.

Deputies responded to 1689 White Oak River Rd. at 6:05 p.m. Saturday in reference to the shooting, according to a press release from the Onslow County Sheriff's Office.

There, they found Karen Ann Rooney, 63, and Peter Terrance Moonan, 62, dead in the residence.

Rooney was shot twice in the upper torso while she lay on a love seat, according to the release. Moonan then shot himself in the head.

Authorities say Rooney and Moonan were a couple for 16 years until February 2010.

Rooney remained at the residence while Moonan resided with family in Carteret County.

One of Moonan's family members told investigator's that he had been depressed lately, but had not displayed any signs that they felt he could have been a danger to anyone.

The Sheriff's Office has no record of any past domestic problems between the two. Autopsies were scheduled for today.

Updated at 12:57 p.m.

MAYSVILLE — A neighbor’s grim discovery of a murder-suicide Saturday night shattered the usual serenity of a tight-knit White Oak River Road community.

A man whose family said he had been depressed drove to the home he owned with a woman he lived with more than a decade but was recently estranged, killed her then took his own life, said Onslow County Sheriff’s Maj. Donnie Worrell.

Neighbors identified the man and woman as Peter Terrance Moonan and Karen Ann Rooney. The couple purchased 1689 White Oak River Road together in 2002, according to Onslow County Tax Office records.

Moonan moved out about a year ago, a neighbor said.

Velda Bynum said Moonan and Rooney had been good neighbors.

“Rooney was very good to my grandchildren,” Bynum said.

One of Bynum’s grandsons went to Rooney’s residence to introduce his new wife to Rooney when through the back door he saw Moonan sitting in a chair, covered in blood. He first thought Moonan had an accident and called 911, but quickly realized what had happened.

“He didn’t see Karen,” Robert Bynum said of his son. “Thank God.”

The Bynum family, who live across the road from where Rooney did, sat under their carport Sunday morning reflecting about Saturday evening’s events and the four years they had known Rooney.

They said neighbors on their stretch of White Oak River Road look out for one another as well as each other’s pets, the Bynums said. Robert Bynum said it was not unusual for Rooney to have dog food on hand just in case a neighbor’s animal came around.

Velda Bynum said Rooney was “a loving, caring person who loved the beach and gardening.”

Rooney’s home is landscaped with conk shells, solar lights and a large vegetable garden. A screened porch looks out over a sylvan backyard.

Moonan’s brother, Peletier resident Jim Moonan, said his brother was a basically a good guy.

“I know he helped his neighbors out a lot when they needed it,” he said.

After Bynum’s grandson called 911, investigators arrived and stayed through the night processing the scene. A lone blue latex glove balled up in the gravel driveway and gurney drag marks were evidence visible outside the home that a crime had occurred. Moonan’s white Volkswagen and Rooney’s gray Saturn were parked side-by-side along the edge of the driveway.

The yellow porch bulb remained illuminated.

Updated at 12:05 p.m.

Neighbors helped identify the couple as Peter Terrance Moonan and Karen Ann Rooney, who owned the home at 1689 White Oak River Road together, according to Onslow County Tax Office records.

Update at 10:30 a.m.

The homicide-suicide was discovered by a neighbor who brought his new wife to meet the woman who was killed.

Neighbors described the woman as "loving, caring, concerned and she loved the beach."

Neighbors also said the couple were not together for nearly a year, prior to the incident.

Updated at 9:40 a.m.

Investigators say the man and woman dead after Saturday night's homicide-suicide are not legally married. The couple was together for 16 years.

The Onslow County Sheriff's Office is investigating a homicide-suicide on White Oak River Road late Saturday night.

Authorities say a man killed his estranged partner and himself.

Investigators have not released names of the couple pending next-of-kin notification, Maj. Donnie Worrell said.

Further details are not yet being released. Stay with for more information on this developing story.

Long Island, NY: A House Fire On Long Island Led Police To An Attempted Murder Suicide

5:03 PM EDT, August 29, 2010

LINDENHURST, N.Y. (WPIX) - Police investigating a house fire in Lindenhurst ended up uncovering what may have been an attempted murder suicide.

Lindenhurst Fire Department firefighters responded to reports of a fire on North Erie Avenue at 4:15 Sunday morning. Police say firefighters found evidence of a bloody crime scene in the bedroom.

Suffolk County Police say they found the owner of the house unconcious in his Chevrolet Tahoe near Oak Beach. His ex-wife's dead body was discovered in the back of the truck, wrapped in a blanket.

The man, Muhammet Karadag, is listed in serious condition at a local hospital. The woman's cause of death is under investigation.

Police have not yet released their names.

Bay Villiage, OH: Bay Village Couple in Middle of Divorce Before Deaths

BAY VILLAGE, Ohio - New details have emerged in the apparent murder-suicide of a Bay Village couple.

Michael and Mary Rothgery were in the middle of a divorce before their untimely deaths.

According to court records, Mary filed last month and obtained a restraining order against Michael the same day.

On Saturday, Bay Village Police say they were called to 27102 Russell Road at around 3 p.m. Saturday, to conduct a welfare check.

After arriving at the home, officers discovered the body of Michael, 42, in the backyard with what appeared to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound, police said.

While searching the inside of the home, Mary's body was located in a TV room. Authorities said she had no "obvious signs of trauma."

Brian Coyne, who lives right behind the Rothgery's home, told Fox 8 News he heard what sounded like "firecrackers" or "gunshots" early on Saturday morning.

Thinking that he was only dreaming, Coyne went back to sleep. But later that day, the reality of what he really heard was confirmed by police presence and a peek in his neighbor's backyard.

"Once I saw over the fence, I said, 'Oh, I know what that is. I kept the wife away, I kept the kids away, I said, 'you guys don't want to go in the backyard,'" Coyne said.

And although he didn't know the Rothgery's well, Coyne said he's horrified that such a situation could occur in a tight-knit community like Bay Village.

"It's certainly disturbing. I didn't expect it in the town or in the township at all."

The couple had two young children, who were found unharmed with relatives in Lorain County.

A spokesperson for the Cuyahoga County Coroner said Mary, 42, died from asphyxiation and Michael died from a gunshot wound to the head.

Additional details were not immediately available.

Mt. Pleasant, NC: Man takes his own life after shooting estranged wife and another man, sheriff says

Posted: Aug 28, 2010 9:43 PM EDT
Updated: Aug 30, 2010 9:04 AM EDT

MT. PLEASANT, NC (WBTV) - Sheriff's deputies say a man shot his estranged wife and another man early Saturday morning before the gunman took his own life early Saturday morning.

The shooting happened around 12:15 a.m. at 1507 S. Main Street in Mt. Pleasant.

According to the Cabarrus County Sheriff's Office, a person who lives in the home where the shooting occurred flagged down a passing motorist advising that three or four people had been shot and that the person responsible for the shooting may have taken his own life.

When sheriff's deputies arrived at the home, they found Harry Dewayne Motley dead and two other people suffering from gunshot wounds.

Kelley Litaker Motley and Donny Ray Threadgill were both transported by ambulance to Northeast Medical Center in Concord.

The sheriff's office says it appears Harry and Kelley Motley were recently separated. Kelley Motley was still living in the home S. Main Street. The shooting appears to be domestic related.

The sheriff's office says Harry Motley walked up to the home and went inside where he confronted Kelley Motley and Threadgill.

Harry Motley fired shots several shots. His estranged wife was shot once in the arm, and several bullets hit Threadgill in the torso, the sheriff's office said.

Two other people were in the home at the time, but they were not hurt.

The sheriff's office said the shooting was an isolated incident and remains under investigation.

Indianapolis, IN: Police: Couple Killed In Murder-Suicide

Friend Finds Bodies

POSTED: 2:28 pm EDT August 27, 2010
UPDATED: 4:42 pm EDT August 27, 2010
INDIANAPOLIS -- A man and a woman who were found dead in a home on Indianapolis' north side apparently died in a murder-suicide, police said Friday.
The bodies of Maurice Smith, 31, and Nickina Cornett, 26, were found in the 3000 block of North Harding Street late Thursday evening.
Indianapolis police said they received a call at about 10:40 p.m. from a man who said he want to check on a friend at the home and found the bodies.
Lt. Jeff Duhamell said Friday afternoon that Cornett had been shot multiple times, but that Smith had no visible signs of trauma to his body.
Police, who found bullet casings throughout the house, initially thought Cornett and Smith were killed by someone else.
Duhamell said investigators are waiting on toxicology reports to come back on Smith.
The deaths likely happened on Wednesday, police said.
Friends of the victims were shaken by the deaths.
"Every day you wake up and watch the news and someone else is gone," said Karen Mitchell. "It's senseless, gun violence, guns."

Article: MURDER-SUICIDES: Economic worries taking toll in recent deaths

Victims' families blame financial stress

Donald and Barbara Romano had been residents of Las Vegas for more than 50 years.

He was a former Marine, a Korean War veteran and a respected member of the community. She was a loving mother, described as "very kind and generous" by her daughter.

But the couple, heavily involved in the real estate business, had been financially crippled by the recession.

On Aug. 20, a Friday, the couple was found dead in the bedroom of their million-dollar Summerlin home by their housekeeper, Las Vegas police said. A gun was found in Donald's hand and a note was left near the bed. Both were 74.

Their deaths are the latest in a wave of murder-suicides in the Las Vegas Valley this month.

From Aug. 7 to Aug. 20 there were five murder-suicides, 10 deaths total, Las Vegas police said. A gun was used in each case. In four of the five instances, the man was the shooter. In one instance, a bystander was wounded.

Maria Romano, daughter of the victims in the most recent report, said economic woes were the root of their stress.

"Their financial situation was not good," she said. "That's not a secret to people that were close to them."

Homicide Lt. Lew Roberts, speaking in general terms, said several of the recent cases can be traced to the same cause.

"At this point it appears that maybe the economy is starting to take effect, which is something we haven't seen before," he said.

Recent murder-suicides handled by Las Vegas police include:

■ Aug. 7: Phil Testa, 74, who shot and killed his wife Angelina, 79, before taking his own life during a standoff with police.

■ Aug. 16: Susan Kapfer, 50, who took a gun into Valley Hospital and Medical Center and killed her husband, Mike, who suffered from a debilitating physical and mental illness. In a suicide note, she compared their relationship to that of Romeo and Juliet.

■ Aug. 19: Edith Corona, 19, and Jose Zergara Rodriguez, 20, were killed in the northwest valley after Rodriguez shot Corona before turning the gun on himself.

■ Aug. 20: On the same day the Romanos were found dead, Steven Becker, 56, shot and killed Shannon Larkin, 48, before killing himself at Tiberti Mini Warehouses on Valley View Boulevard. Another woman at the business was injured by Becker, but survived.

Maria Romano, herself a counselor at the Community Counseling Center of Southern Nevada, near Sahara Avenue and Maryland Parkway, said she felt terrible for the families of all the victims, not just her own family.

"There's been too many, and here I am in the middle of it," she said. "My heart goes out to them."

All five crimes were classified as murder-suicide, although there were few similarities in the circumstances of each.

One expert said that's normal; there are a wide variety of stressful situations that can cause an otherwise normal person to snap.

Jack Levin, a professor of sociology and criminology at Northeastern University in Boston and an author of several books on the psychology of murder, said most murder-suicides are caused by a "catastrophic trigger event."

"A serious financial loss, the loss of a job or money, or tremendous indebtedness," Levin said. "It could be a child custody battle or a nasty separation or divorce, a terminal illness. … It's almost always a catastrophic loss that precipitates a murder-suicide, and that's one of the only characteristics that is consistent."

These crimes are often unpreventable, police said. The damage is done by the time officers are called.

Levin agreed. Although depression can be a warning sign, there are thousands of cases where a depressed person never harms anyone.

"It's best not to wait until someone wants to kill himself and their spouse," he said. "Once that intention is there, it's probably too late."

Ron Lawrence, executive director of the nonprofit Community Counseling Center and a licensed marriage and family therapist, said many residents of Las Vegas are battling hardship. His agency offers mental health and substance abuse treatment to about 3,000 people a year, and also offers intervention training for families.

Lawrence has seen thousands of clients dealing with depression. He advises friends and family to watch for early warning signs: severe depression, despondency or expressions of futility.

"In other words, saying 'No matter what I do, it doesn't matter,' " Lawrence said.

Often, just talking to a friend about problems, or "debriefing," can take the edge off, he said.

In more severe cases, professional help might be the best answer.

"In the mental health industry, we know there is always an answer most of the time," he said. "And we make ourselves available. That's our business."

Levin, Lawrence and others said there are few statistics on murder-suicides, so it is hard to spot trends or draw conclusions.

The FBI tracks homicides and health agencies track suicides, but no one has cross-referenced the two statistics, said Kristen Rand, legislative director for the Violence Policy Center.

The Washington-based nonprofit organization, which has an anti-gun agenda, has tried three times to track murder-suicides but their limited studies are not definitive.

Still, Rand said some patterns are clear.

"The killer is virtually always a male, the weapon is always a gun and the victims are often intimate partners," she said.

In the most recent study, covering the first half of 2008, only about 12 percent of cases were related to finances, Rand said.

Most involved broken relationships that led to domestic disputes.

Rand said she isn't sure why no government agency tracks murder-suicides.

"That's a good question," she said. "There's just never been resources devoted to it."

Suicide statistics provided by the Clark County coroner, which might indicate a rise of severe depression in Las Vegas, show no significant upswing or downturn since 2007.

But for friends and family of the victims, trends and statistics hold little meaning.

Romano said she hopes people would focus less on the tragedies and do more to help those in need before it's too late.

"I think that's what people need to know more than anything else," Romano said. "There is counseling available. … They won't refuse services to people who aren't able to pay now. They'll get you the help you need.

"Those are the things that are important, to focus on prevention and any positive aspects we can find."

Contact reporter Mike Blasky at or 702-383-0283.

Delta Township, MI: Delta Twp. woman dies after apparent murder-suicide


DELTA TOWNSHIP -- A 29-year-old woman whose husband shot her Saturday afternoon before taking his own life has died.

Eaton County Undersheriff Fred McPhail said the woman, Natasha Marie Garcia, was shot in the thigh and the abdomen with an AK47 assault rifle outside a home in the 5100 block of Ivan Drive, near Elmwood Road.

"She died after several hours of surgery," McPhail said.

Her husband, Ivan Gardea Garcia, 33, shot himself in the head using the same gun. McPhail said the couple had recently split up and that Natasha Garcia was moving in with friends.

He said they had three children, who now are staying with a grandmother.

Westland, MI: Cops: 1 dead, 1 injured in apparent murder-suicide attempt

Westland police are investigating what appears to be an attempted murder-suicide that left one man dead and his wife injured, Lt. Mike Matich said this morning.

Police were called to the 29000 block of Manchester Street, near Middlebelt Road and Ann Arbor Trial, around 1:30 this morning and found two people, a husband and wife, shot in the basement of the townhome, he said.

The wife was taken to the hospital and the husband died at the scene with what appeared to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound, police said. Police said they don't know what condition the woman is in this morning.

Two adult sons that were at the house at the time have been interviewed by police, he said. One of them called 911 to report the shootings.

Police are not releasing the names at this time.

Dawnville, GA: Neighbors shocked at triple shooting

DAWNVILLE, Ga. — The man who set off Thursday night’s deadly shooting spree in Whitfield County spent most of last week in jail.

David Hartline, of Summerville, Ga., was arrested Monday after failing to show up in court, where he was scheduled to be a witness in a case, according to Chattooga deputies.

He was released from the Chattooga County Jail about 2 p.m. Wednesday, 25 hours before showing up drunk and armed at a birthday party for his ex-girlfriend’s daughter.

PDF: Initial incident report

Hartline, a registered sex offender, was turned away from the party but returned with a handgun and killed Chattanooga resident Edward “Buster” Manz III and Cleveland, Tenn., resident Kenneth Simonson, authorities said. Hartline’s ex-girlfriend Mindy Bullard, who is also Manz’s daughter and Simonson’s ex-wife, was shot but survived.

Word of the shootings dominated conversations in the small community Saturday.

“Everybody’s wanting reason out of chaos,” said Terry Hughes, manning the wares at his yard sale in Dawnville on Saturday. “You may know what went on, but you’ll never know what was going on in his head.”

Hartline died at the scene of at least two gunshot wounds that investigators believe were fired by Manz. At least five children hid in the attic and were unharmed.

Bullard was shot in the legs as she fled across her roof and broke both ankles when she tumbled off, but staff at Erlanger hospital in Chattanooga and Hamilton Medical Center in Dalton said she was not listed at either hospital Saturday afternoon.

Whitfield County Coroner Bobbie Dixon said Bullard was “no-listed,” meaning hospitals were told not to release any information about her condition. Officials said Friday that Bullard’s injuries were not life-threatening.

Chattooga County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Ken Anderson said he did not know in which case Hartline had been set to testify. Attempts to reach Judge Kristina Graham and Sheriff John Everette were unsuccessful Saturday.

Friends remembered Simonson as a dedicated father who coached his two sons’ football team.

According to Hartline’s obituary, the 41-year-old was a building contractor with three children and four grandchildren. He was convicted of child molestation in 1999.


Sitting at his yard sale Saturday, Hughes said he and his wife were at their home on Dawnville Road next door to the fire station when sirens began wailing Thursday night. For most of the evening, he couldn’t even hear his television.

“For a person’s mind to flip like that over a birthday party — that just doesn’t make sense,” said Hughes.

At the sale with the Hughes was Jeffrey Painter, a student at Southeast Whitfield High School. He said his girlfriend was at the party and hid in the attic with the younger children. He said the family is having a tough time and his girlfriend “won’t stop crying.”

Attempts to reach Whitfield County Sheriff Scott Chitwood or a department spokesman were unsuccessful Saturday.

San Bernandino, CA: San Bernardino DA says police shooting justified

The Associated Press
Posted: 08/27/2010 07:12:29 AM PDT
Updated: 08/27/2010 09:32:26 AM PDT

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif.—The San Bernardino County district attorney's office has released a report saying a police officer was justified when he shot and killed a 20-year-old armed man on May 31.
The report says around noon that day Davon Maurice Johnson had an argument with his girlfriend so she moved to her mother's house. Johnson followed her and a new fight started, a pattern that continued through the day.
Shortly after 10 p.m., police got a 911 call saying Johnson had returned again and was armed.
When Officer Marc Alvarez confronted him, Johnson took a gun from his waistband, pointed it at Alvarez and told him: "You're not taking me."
The report says Alvarez fired three times, hitting Johnson once in the chest. He was taken to a hospital and pronounced dead.

Pima County, AZ: Man slain in NW standoff; said he'd killed girlfriend

Brian J. Pedersen Arizona Daily Star | Posted: Sunday, August 29, 2010 12:00 am

A 57-year-old man who told authorities he'd killed his girlfriend was shot to death by SWAT officers during a standoff on the northwest side late Friday, officials said.
Tim Debeau called 911 around 9 p.m. to say he'd killed Yolanda Pronko, 53, said Deputy Jason Ogan, a Pima County Sheriff's Department spokesman.
When deputies arrived at his house, in the 4200 block of West Pyracantha Drive, near West Cortaro Farms and North Thornydale roads, Debeau refused to come out and barricaded himself inside, Ogan said.
The Pima Regional SWAT team was called, eventually deploying a robot into the home to try to contact Debeau. SWAT officers, using the robot, saw Pronko inside, dead from "obvious signs of trauma," Ogan said.
Debeau came out a short time later carrying a hammer in one hand and a knife in the other, Ogan said. After he made "aggressive movements" toward SWAT officers, the officers fired, Ogan said.
"They felt threatened and used deadly force," Ogan said. "Even if (suspects are) 30 feet away, by time you get your gun, they're already on top of you."
Arizona Revised Statutes states the use of deadly force by law enforcement officers is justified if they're defending themselves or another person from the use or imminent use of deadly physical force.
Debeau was shot several times and then taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead. It wasn't immediately clear how many times he was shot.
The Sheriff's Department did not release the name of the deputy or deputies who shot Debeau.
The Pima County Attorney's Office will investigate the shooting, as is standard for officer-involved shootings.
Star reporter Jamar Younger contributed to this story. Contact reporter Brian J. Pedersen at or 573-4224.

Hialeah, FL: Shooter kills teenage ex-girlfriend, her mom, then himself

Posted on Thu, Aug. 26, 2010


Yaimarelys Roque, 23, identified her self as the best friend and neighbor of Lisset Perez, 15, who was murdered in Hialeah on Thursday morning.
A man reeling from a romantic heartbreak shot and killed his teenage ex-girlfriend and her mother before turning the gun on himself in Hialeah, police said.
Police identified the three dead as Adalberto Torres, the 21-year-old shooter, his ex- girlfriend, Lisset Perez, 15, and her mother, Vivian Albelo, 39, said Carl Zogby, a Hialeah police spokesman.

The couple had broken up a week ago.

The shooting happened about 6:20 a.m. outside the Water View Villa apartment complex at 495 W. 12th St.

Relatives, who nicknamed Perez "Chai," described Torres, nicknamed "Pacho," as very possessive.

"He was very jealous," said Yaimarelys Roque, 23, a neighbor who said she heard two shots while getting her kids ready for school. Even before finding out what happened, Roque said, her husband thought "Pacho was killing Chai."

Torres had lived with Perez and her mother for about two years before the break up, Zogby said.

"My aunt accepted the situation, so Chai wouldn't move away," said Yunerkis Aguilera, Perez's cousin. "My aunt did not want her to date him."

Roque said she saw Torres walking around the apartment complex Wednesday night. Hours later, a tarp covered the two bodies on the ground near a parked SUV in the parking lot outside the complex for most of the morning.

They "were shot in the parking lot as they were leaving for school," said Hialeah police spokesman Eddie Rodriguez.

Perez was a freshman at Westland Hialeah High School. She had just turned 15 on Tuesday.

She was "a gentle person, sweet and very pretty," said Aguilera.

Zogby said the couple did not have a record of domestic violence.

"He used to rough her up, but she never reported it," Zogby added.

Perez's relative, Mayelin Vizcaya, said Torres was very controling.

"He wouldn't let her talk to even my brother or my husband or my 2-year-old son," said Vizcaya.

Southeast of Hialeah, in an efficiency in Miami, Torres shot himself at 2721 SW 29th Court. He had only been living there for a couple of days. Police found his body about 9 a.m., said Napier Velazquez, a Miami police spokesman.

Torres, who was born in Havana, Cuba, did not have a criminal record in the United States.

"He was very respectful, he was very friendly, he was a great kid," said Alex Rosa, Torres' cousin.

Torres' friend Sandra Garcia agreed. "He was very reserved. He was a quiet kid," said Garcia. "He didn't drink, didn't smoke."

Standing near the yellow crime scene tape in Hialeah, Perez's Cuban grandmother Julia Diaz cried as she tried to comfort another granddaughter, Yalin Betancourt, who lost her mother and sister.

"The best thing that ever happened to her was to break up with him, but at the same time, it got her killed," said Vizcaya.

Raliegh, NC: Man accused of shooting girlfriend testifies

RALEIGH (WTVD) -- There was more drama Friday in the trial of a Wake County man accused of murdering his girlfriend.

Sixty-three-year-old Leslie "Lester" Smith is on trial for shooting 48-year-old Jaquelyn Larue Gore in his Wake Forest home July 26, 2009.

Smith's attorney has argued an unusual 'suicide by boyfriend' defense - telling jurors Gore actually wanted Smith to shoot her.

He put Smith on the stand Friday to talk about Gore's history of alcoholism and suicide attempts in an attempt to bolster that claim.

Smith talked for two and a half hours - telling jurors he wished he was the one who died.

"I feel horrible. I'd much rather it had been me. And I still do," he said.

Smith admitted he shot Gore.

He said he was under extreme emotional stress at the time. He had just lost his job of 20 years, was facing a possible cancer diagnosis, and was once again feuding with Gore.

He says he came home to find that she was selling his beloved guitar collection, and she told him that there was nothing he could do about - then started coming at him screaming.

"When she started coming towards me, I took the gun out of the holster and pushed the safety off and pointed it in the direction she was coming," said Smith.

But the prosecutor jumped on that testimony - trying to prove premeditation.

"Why did you take the safety off?" asked prosecutor Colon Willoughby.

"Can't fire a gun with the safety on," Smith replied.

"So at that point you had decided that you were gonna need to fire the gun?" asked Willoughby.

"No sir, I told you I was scared. I was reacting. I was not thinking," said Smith.

In a taped confession the day of the shooting, Smith told an investigator that when Gore got close he "put the gun on her" and pulled the trigger.

He says a month later his memory improved.

"Sorta dawned on me - I think she tripped on one of the guitar cases and was falling forward," said Smith.

The DA hammered Smith on that point - saying he found it interesting that his story changed after he talked with an attorney and a psychiatrist.

This case will likely wrap up early next week.

Lake Havasu, AZ: Police: Lake Havasu City man kills ex-girlfriend, 4 others

by Laurie Merrill - Aug. 29, 2010 11:11 AM
The Arizona Republic

In a custody battle turned deadly, a Lake Havasu City man ordered to stay away from his ex-girlfriend and their children burst into her new boyfriend's birthday party and went on a rampage, fatally shooting her and four others late Saturday night, police said.

He then fled to his sister's house in California with the young children, where he took his own life.

One woman was wounded but survived the attack.

"It is heinous," Lake Havasu City police Sgt. Joe Harrold said Sunday. "This is the worst shooting in the history of Lake Havasu City."

In all, six people died, including gunman Brian Diez, 26; his ex-girlfriend, Deborah Langstaff, 23; and her boyfriend, Primo Verdone, 24, police said.

Langstaff, a nurse at a local hospital, had taken out a restraining order earlier this year preventing Diez from seeing her or the children after he was charged with slapping their infant son, Harrold said.

After opening fire inside Langstaff's home, Diez took their two children, ages 13 months and 4 years, and drove to California, police said.

About 3 a.m. Sunday, Diez's vehicle was spotted at his sister's home in Rancho Cucamonga. San Bernardino County sheriff's deputies discovered Diez had committed suicide by shooting himself.

The children were found safe inside their aunt's house.

Who will take custody of the boy and girl has not been determined, nor has it been decided whether California or Arizona will handle their placement, Harrold said.

He added that as far as investigators have been able to determine, besides Langstaff, Diez did not know the other people he shot. Besides Verdone, they were Russell Nyland, 42; Deborah Nyland, 44; Ashley Nyland, 20; and Brock Kelson, 20.

Deborah Nyland, the lone survivor, was transported to Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center in Las Vegas, where she was treated and released Sunday.

Harrold said Ashley Nyland was a friend of Langstaff, Russell and Deborah Nyland were Ashley's parents and Kelson was her boyfriend.

Hospital staff at Havasu Regional Medical Center, where Langstaff worked as a clinical nurse manager, are "in shock" over her death, spokeswoman Sheena Benson said.

Brownsburg, IN: Woman strangled in Indy East grad

August 27, 2010 - 11:53 pm

A Brownsburg woman killed in a murder-suicide was a former Columbus resident and a graduate of Columbus East High School.

Mary Jane Frisby was found strangled after her husband, David Frisby, 58, shot himself atop a downtown Indianapolis parking garage and fell eight floors to the sidewalk Thursday, according to news reports.

Article: In Kansas, far more men kill women than vice versa

The Wichita Eagle

A large crowd gathers for a candlelight vigil for 14-year-old Alicia DeBolt tonight at Jack Kilby Square in Great Bend.
Gallery: Vigil for Alicia DeBolt
When the body of 14-year-old Alicia DeBolt was found near Great Bend last week, it apparently marked another in a series of high-profile cases involving young women who have died violently at the hands of men.
Crime statistics show that young women in Kansas are far more likely than men to be murdered by a member of the opposite sex.
Several of the recent high-profile cases prompted new state laws that were designed to make the state safer.
But Kathy Williams, director of the Wichita Area Sexual Assault Center, said the new laws and all the precautions in the world can't ensure complete safety.
"Perpetrators always look for opportunities," she said.
With certain crimes, she said, women are more vulnerable than men.
"Women are much more likely to be victims of intimate-partner violence; that is just how our society is."
No charges have been filed in Alicia's death, but the case resulted in the arrest Friday of Adam Longoria, 36, who was charged with stealing a Ford Explorer from the Great Bend company where he worked. Friday morning authorities had asked for the public's help in finding Longoria, calling him a "person of interest" in Alicia's death.
What statistics show
Although most crime statistics don't include information about age and gender, the FBI's supplemental homicide reports have extracted detailed demographic information from more than 2,000 Kansas homicides.
From 1985 through 2006, the figures show, Kansas recorded 63 homicides where the victims were females ages 12 to 21. The killers listed in those cases included 42 men and one woman. The gender of the killer was listed as unknown in 20 of the homicides.
By comparison, there were 157 male homicide victims in that age group during the same time period. Those cases included 120 where the suspect was a male, six where the suspect was a female and 31 where the gender of the killer wasn't known.
The 42 male suspects charged with killing young women ranged in age from 14 to 46. The average age was 25.
Many of the state's most notorious homicides involved victims who were girls or young women. Some examples:
* July 1, 1993: Stephanie Schmidt , a 20-year-old Pittsburg State University student from Leawood, left a bar near Pittsburg with Donald Ray Gideon, who had served 10 years in prison for raping a Labette County Community College student. Gideon, 31, later admitted that he raped and strangled Schmidt.
The crime resulted in the 1994 Sexually Violent Predator Act, which allows the state to keep some sex offenders locked up indefinitely after their prison terms expire.
* March 30, 1996: Carrie Williams , a 20-year-old Pittsburg State University junior from Parsons, was found dead in her apartment. Gary Kleypas, 40, who was on parole for a Missouri murder conviction, was convicted of the murder and became the first person to be sentenced to death under the state's current death penalty law.
* June 9, 2006: Chelsea Brooks , a 14-year-old recent graduate of Allison Middle School, was 9 months pregnant when she disappeared from Skate South at 1900 E. MacArthur. Her body was found less than a week later in a Butler County field.
Elgin "Ray Ray" Robinson, 20, was convicted of offering $500 to have Chelsea killed to prevent her from giving birth to his baby.
Everett Gentry, 17, was convicted of being a go-between in the crime, and Theodore "Ted" Burnett, 49, was convicted of strangling Chelsea.
The case resulted in the passing of Alexa's Law, which draws its name from Chelsea's unborn child and allows prosecutors to bring double charges against a person who attacks a pregnant woman and harms the fetus.
* Jan. 5, 2007: Jodi Sanderholm , a 19-year-old Cowley County student, was abducted, raped and strangled, and her body was found several days in a wildlife area near Arkansas City. Justin Eugene Thurber, 23, was convicted of capital murder and sentenced to death.
The case prompted the Kansas Legislature to pass "Jodi's Law," which makes it easier for law enforcement officers to pursue stalking charges. Thurber had been accused of stalking female students in the college's dance team, of which Jodi was a member.
* June 2, 2007: Kelsey Smith , an 18-year-old Overland Park woman, was abducted for the parking lot of a Target store, and her body was found four days later in a Missouri park. Edward Hall, 26, pleaded guilty to capital murder to avoid the death penalty.
The case prompted a law that makes it easier for police to get tracking information from cell phone companies. Kelsey's parents said her body would have been found much sooner had it been easier for police to get Smith's cell phone records.
Society's expectations
Williams said society may be partly to blame for some of the violence against women.
"Unfortunately, we socialize men to be big and strong and not show emotion," she said.
To counter the tendency toward aggression and violence, she said, men need to learn to love and care in the broad sense, and they need to learn to respect the dignity of others.
As long as society fails to "discourage all these violent images of men, we're still swimming upstream," she said.
Another point she wanted to make is this: "Too often we look at what we think victims did wrong and not what the perpetrator did wrong."
To get at the underlying factors that lead to violent crimes, she said, "we need to be talking to the men who are potentially going to be committing crimes like these. That, I believe, is the only way we are going to end it."
Williams said parents today probably are more concerned about the safety of their daughters than the safety of their sons. But, she said, "the reality is we need to watch out for all our kids."

Chicago, IL: Deaf And Mute Man Charged With Wife's Murder

CHICAGO (AP) ― Prosecutors in Chicago say a deaf and mute man stabbed his wife to death on their 10th wedding anniversary and still had blood on his hands when he confessed to a police sign language interpreter.

At a court appearance Friday, a Circuit Court judge denied bond for 40-year-old South Side resident Charles Hughes.

Police say Hughes was holding a bloody knife when they arrived at the his apartment early Wednesday morning. They say he dropped the knife and held out his hands in a "cuff-me" motion.

Hughes is charged with first-degree murder for allegedly killing 44-year-old Debra Haywood-Hughes, who was also deaf and mute. Police say he stabbed her 20 times, including in the back, chest and stomach.

Prosecutors say Hughes summoned police himself, using a special service for the hearing-impaired.

Lawrence County, TN: Man Arrested For Wife's Murder 17 Months After Her Death

Posted: Aug 27, 2010 10:42 PM EDT

Danny Owens
LAWRENCE COUNTY, Tenn. – Though Vickie Owens' death was originally ruled a suicide, persistent police work has led to the arrest of her husband on murder charges.

Danny Owens was arrested by the Lawrence County Sheriff's department at the couple's home on Friday after a grand jury indicted him on murder charges. Police received information that he'd be there to show the house to a potential buyer.

Vickie's body was found at the couple's home on February 8, 2009. She had died of an apparent gunshot wound. Owens' told police that Vickie had committed suicide.

However, evidence found at the scene along with several other inconsistencies allowed detectives to continue investigating and interview witnesses.

Detectives believe that Owens shot his wife and that he manipulated key evidence to make it appear as if Vickie Owens had committed suicide.

Owens was held without bond. He is expected to be arraigned in Lawrence County Circuit Court in September.

Springfield, DE: Springfield man, 88 charged with wife's stabbing death

Sunday, August 29, 2010

By Cindy Scharr

SPRINGFIELD – An 88-year-old man is in custody for allegedly stabbing his seriously ill wife to death on Sunday.

Ernest Rayfield was arraigned on murder charges Sunday evening.

Police found the body of Rayfield’s wife, Mary, in their Madison Road home around 11:45 a.m. She had been stabbed, sources said.

Police believe the man snapped due to the stress of caring for his wife. He said he could not take it any more, according to court documents.

Rayfield was being held at George W. Hill Correctional Facility without bail.

Harmans, MD: Man Killed in Lanham Crash Was Wanted For Questioning in Wife's Death

Updated: Thursday, 26 Aug 2010, 11:33 PM EDT
Published : Thursday, 26 Aug 2010, 10:15 PM EDT

LANHAM, Md. - There is new information on a fatal car crash at Martin Luther King Highway in Prince George's County.

Police say the man who died in the crash was wanted for questioning in the death of his wife in Anne Arundel County.

Sources tell FOX 5 that the crash may have been intentional. They say the driver served time in prison previously for murder.

While he was in prison, the man married the jail’s dental hygienist, Diana Patten. She was found dead at 7:45 a.m. Thursday in a house at Harmans, Md.

Minutes later, the man died when his car flipped over and caught on fire.

New London, CT: Charles Buck Goes On Trial In Killing Of His Wife, Leslie, In 2002

Story posted 2010.08.28 at 10:56 PM EDT
NEW LONDON-- — Hearing impaired, legally blind and pushing a walker at 92, Catherine Edmonston endured dramatic testimony in the weeklong 2004 trial of the man who kidnapped and beat her daughter, Leslie Buck.
During breaks in testimony outside the courtroom, Edmonston often would show people a photo of Buck, 57, a popular schoolteacher in Stonington who was found dead in her Mystic home two days after the May 2, 2002, abduction.
Now Edmonston is 98, and her son, Richard, said she is too frail to travel from Massachusetts to Connecticut for another court case, the one they have been waiting for: the murder trial of her son-in-law, Charles Buck. Police say Charles Buck, 65, killed his wife so he could marry his younger barmaid mistress.
But Richard Edmonston and Leslie Buck's friends plan to attend the latest chapter in a soap opera-like crime story that has kept the historic seaport community of Mystic talking for eight years — and family members hoping for some resolution. The trial begins with jury selection Sept. 7 in Superior Court in New London.
"This trial is long overdue," Richard Edmonston said.
Police always believed Buck was a suspect in the death of his wife, a second-grade teacher at Deans Mill School.
But it would take years of investigation before they would finally point a finger at Buck, who, like his wife, was well known around town. He served as a volunteer firefighter and president of the tax district, and he ran his own electrical business. Many people who knew Buck as a solid citizen were unaware of what police now claim: that he was leading another life as an unfaithful husband.
Two 911 Calls
The Bucks' seemingly tranquil life was rocked on May 2, 2002, when police received a frantic emergency 911 call.
"This person, a friend of my husband's, was in the garage," a breathless Leslie Buck said. "I think he had a stun gun. He grabbed me by the neck. He kept pulling me. He pushed me down. He tied my hands and feet when he took me to his house."
She escaped, bruised and wounded. Russell Kirby, a handyman who did work for Charles Buck, is serving a 21-year prison sentence for the attack and abduction.
Two days later, there was another call to police from the Buck home. This time, Leslie Buck was dead.
Charles Buck called police to the couple's home in the picturesque Mason's Island section on May 4, 2002, saying he had found his wife dead at the bottom of a flight of stairs.
Police interviewed Buck, sought the help of famous forensic expert Henry Lee and waited for word from the state medical examiner's office. Was Leslie Buck pushed down the stairs? Were the wounds she suffered in the kidnapping cause her to fall?
The state medical examiner said Buck died of head injuries but could not determine whether her death was a homicide or in any way connected to the kidnapping.
Police continued their investigation of Charles Buck, searching his home and business and interviewing friends about his personal life.
While police remained mum publicly about what they found, lawyers representing the estate of Leslie Buck went public with what they learned about Charles Buck. In May 2005, the lawyers filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Buck, claiming that an extramarital affair with another woman drove Buck to kill his wife.
In January 2009, police arrested Buck and charged him with murder. Buck didn't know his mistress, Carol Perez, was cooperating with police and agreed to have her conversations with Buck recorded. Investigators also sought the help of a forensic expert and dissected interviews Buck gave to police. Police said a pattern of inconsistencies in those stories led to his arrest.
"Sugar Daddy"
During a probable-cause hearing last year in which a judge ruled that prosecutors had enough evidence to try Buck for his wife's slaying, prosecutors presented a scandalous story about Buck's alleged motive. They said that while Buck was married, he began having an affair with Perez, who worked at a Mystic lounge Buck frequented.

Investigators said Buck showered Perez with gifts, including two cars, a $235,000 house, Victoria's Secret lingerie, toys for her children, and a $15,000, 2 1/2-carat diamond ring. Employees at the bar said Perez referred to Buck as "Sugar Daddy," according to court testimony.
When asked about Perez, Buck said that he and she were acquaintances and that he counseled Perez about some trouble she was having with her boyfriend. He initially told police he loaned Perez $1,000, but when pressed, he admitted he bought her many items and gave her more than $1,000.
Police also said Buck misled police about his whereabouts the day Leslie Buck was found dead.
Police have theorized that Leslie Buck might have been struck with a wire bar. They could find nothing on the staircase that would cause the cut she had on her head, and they found little blood and no signs of forced entry into the house.
Hubert Santos, an attorney for Buck, did not return calls for comment. But in the past, Santos has questioned the evidence police claim to have against Buck and their portrayal of Buck as an unfaithful spouse. During the probable-cause hearing, Santos called his client a loving husband and pointed to testimony by Perez in which she said her relationship with Buck was never physical.
Santos said Leslie Buck had a heart problem that could have been exacerbated when she was assaulted during the kidnapping. He theorized that she became dizzy and fell down the stairs.
If that were the case, police have said, why did Leslie Buck have a wound on her head that could not have been caused in a fall? Investigators are convinced a weapon was moved from the crime scene.
For now, former Stonington Police Chief David Erskine said, the detectives who worked for years on the case will have to see how the evidence holds up in court.
"They've waited a long time for this trial," Erskine said. "They never gave up on what they believed. We just have to see what's going to happen."
Courant researcher Tina Bachetti contributed to this story.
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Thursday, August 26, 2010

Bermuda Dunes, CA: Man Accused of Killing Bermuda Dunes Wife Pleads Not Guilty

Reported by: KPSP Local 2 News
Created: 8/25 2:17 pm
Last Update: 8/25 5:13 pm
A Bermuda Dunes man accused of fatally shooting his wife of 38 years during a domestic dispute has pleaded not guilty to a first-degree murder charge.

Garey Lee Smith, 55, faces 50 years to life in prison if convicted of killing his 63-year-old spouse.

He entered the plea Wednesday in an Indio courtroom.

Sandra Smith was found shot dead in the home she shared with Garey Smith late Sunday night, after police apparently got a call from Smith himself, admitting the crime, according to Michael Jeandron of the Riverside County District Attorney's office.

"Late Sunday night...Smith called 911 and told the dispatcher that he had just shot his wife five times and that she was dead," Jeandron said. "The victim was pronounced
dead at the scene by responding medical personnel."

Police were on scene nearly all of Monday, Aug. 23, to clear the scene and investigate.

Smith remained in custody at the Indio jail in lieu of $1.5 million bail, according to jail records. He's to appear in court again on Sept. 3.

Milwaukee, WI: Wis. man accused of killing woman with ice pick

August 25, 2010 8:35 PM ET

MILWAUKEE (AP) - A Milwaukee man has been charged with stabbing a woman to death with an ice pick while the woman's three young daughters listened from a closet.

A criminal complaint released Wednesday charges 63-year-old Eddie Lee Anthony with first-degree intentional homicide.

Online court records didn't list an attorney for Anthony on Wednesday.

Anthony's 11-year-old daughter told police her parents were arguing Friday when she saw Anthony follow her mother into the bedroom with a 10-inch ice pick. The girl says she heard 43-year-old Sabrina R. Junior screaming, and after a while the screaming stopped.

The girl told investigators Anthony then packed clothes in a suitcase and left.

The complaint doesn't say whether Anthony is the father of the other two girls.

Houston, TX: Cops: Man confesses to 1984 Houston double murder

By SARAH PORTLOCK Associated Press Writer © 2010 The Associated Press
Aug. 25, 2010, 6:29PM

HOUSTON — A man called in by detectives investigating a 26-year-old murder case has confessed to killing his girlfriend and their infant daughter, Houston police said Wednesday.
Charles Leon Smith, 56, was charged with capital murder for the deaths of Pamela Clarence, 23, and their 1-month-old daughter, Tashona, on Aug. 2, 1984, police said. Investigators said Clarence was strangled with a cord and her daughter was suffocated with a pillow, and their bodies were found by relatives at Clarence's home in Houston.
Smith was being held in Harris County jail without bond. He appeared in court for a preliminary hearing Wednesday, though Harris County court records do not list an attorney for him.
Over the last three years, police have reviewed evidence and re-interviewed witnesses and suspects in the case, but it wasn't until Monday that officers spoke with Smith and arrested him after "he made some incriminating comments," Lt. Richard Kleczynski said.
Police wouldn't provide details of Smith's statement, or what evidence pointed to him, but "the suspect confessed to murdering both Pamela and Tashona," Kleczynski said.
Sgt. Eli Cisneros, who interviewed Smith, said he seemed "not at all remorseful" but relieved.
"He seemed to just want to put this behind him," Cisneros said. "It was obviously something great he'd been holding all this time."
Investigators said Clarence wanted to break up with Smith after learning he had another girlfriend who bore him a son one month after Tashona was born. Smith became upset and strangled Clarence and then suffocated Tashona, police said.
Smith hadn't been questioned since the time of the murders. He was one of two possible suspects in the deaths, but Senior Police Officer Connie Park said DNA evidence collected at the time couldn't point to one person.
"In this case, we could only make the (arrest) by a confession," Park said.
Smith has since worked as a stock person in a Woodlands grocery store.
Clarence's sister, Jo Ann Petitt, said she was stunned when officers called her Tuesday and told her about the arrest. She said her large family never gave up hope that police would find the killer.
"I can remember like it was yesterday," said Petitt, who found her infant niece under a pile of blankets in a bed after another relative found Clarence's body and a neighbor called 911. "Not a day goes by I don't think about her."
The family has not seen Smith since the murders but always suspected him, she said.
"All of us said from Day 1 it had to be the baby's daddy," Petitt said. "Who would kill a one-month old child? It had to be the daddy."

Harrison, AR: Harrison man jailed after wife's body found buried

AUGUST 26, 2010

HARRISON (AP) — An Arkansas man was jailed Wednesday on suspicion of murder in the death of his wife after her body was found in a shallow grave near the couple's home outside Harrison, the Boone County sheriff said.

Morris Dean Davis, 60, was being held without bond after investigators found the body of Lisa Marie Davis, 45, buried and partially encased in concrete on the property where the couple had lived since 2003. Authorities went to the home after a family friend reported Lisa Davis had disappeared, Sheriff Danny Hickman said.

Investigators believe she had been dead for about a month.

During questioning, Morris Davis eventually told investigators where they could find his wife's body, the sheriff said. He told officers his wife had committed suicide and "that he buried her on the property to keep her close," Hickman said.

But investigators don't believe Lisa Davis killed herself, based on evidence gathered in the case, including a possible Internet relationship she was having, Hickman said.

Morris Davis was being held in the Boone County Jail. He faces charges of first-degree murder, abuse of a corpse and tampering with evidence. Hickman said a charge of manufacturing a controlled substance was also filed after officers found more than 100 marijuana plants on his property.

His wife's body was sent to the state medical examiner's office for an autopsy to determine the cause of death.

Seven Devils, NC: Seven Devils Murder Gets National Attention

Written by Steve Frank
Thursday, 26 August 2010 05:06 AM

Seven Devils Police and the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation are stirring interest in the case of the murder of Deana Schermerhorn, found dead last year, and are asking for help in locating her husband, Christopher Meade, wanted for questioning in the case. Investigators have released a new photo of Meade—available on—and are urging the public to call
with any information regarding his whereabouts. So far, Meade is charged only with credit card fraud, but is wanted for questioning in Schermerhorn’s death. The case will get nationwide attention this weekend, August 28 when it is airs on FOX’s America Most Wanted at 9pm, EST, 8pm CST. New details about the investigation are also available at
Deana Schermerhorn was last seen alive at her home on November 7, 2009. Nearly six weeks later, her body was discovered in Seven Devils, N.C. Christopher Meade is suspected of using his wife’s credit cards during her disappearance and has current outstanding felony warrants for financial card theft. Investigators also want to question him regarding his wife’s death. The Seven Devils release says “NC investigators are excited about their partnership with America’s Most Wanted. Capt Bobby Powell with Seven Devils PD said, ‘We are pulling out all the stops now. America’s Most Wanted has an amazing track record and soon, millions of viewers will all be on the lookout for Christopher Meade.’”
Meade is a white male, twenty eight years old, approximately five feet seven inches tall, 140 lbs, brown hair, blue eyes with possible facial hair. Meade has contacts in Western North Carolina and in eastern Tennessee as well as Virginia.
Anyone with information regarding Meade’s whereabouts should contact the Seven Devils Department of Public Safety at 828-963-6760 or Wade H. Colvard, Special Agent, North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation 828-294-2226.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Las Vegas, NV: WOUNDED WOMAN'S CONDITION UNKNOWN: Police identify man, woman in murder-suicide

A man and woman who died Friday in a murder-suicide at a business near Tropicana Avenue and Valley View Boulevard were identified Tuesday.

Her death was ruled a homicide. Her city of residence was unknown.

Steven Becker, 56, of Las Vegas died from a shotgun wound to the chest. His death was ruled a suicide.

Las Vegas police said a second woman also was injured, but they did not say how she was involved. Her condition was unknown.

Police received a call at 8:22 p.m. Friday from a man who said he had shot a woman.

Officers were dispatched to the Tiberti Mini Warehouses, 4870 S. Valley View, and found the deceased man and woman.

The second woman was taken to University Medical Center in critical condition

Boise, ID: Authorities name man involved in shooting

August 24, 2010 10:44 AM ET

BOISE, Idaho (AP) - Ada County officials have released the name of a 54-year-old man who died after a weekend shooting.

The coroner says John C. Smith died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head Sunday night. Police believe he shot his girlfriend and then himself Saturday night.

His 34-year-old girlfriend remained hospitalized with serious injuries Monday afternoon. Her name has not been released.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Omaha, NE: Omaha Couple Found Dead in Their Home

Posted: Aug 23, 2010 10:22 PM EDT
Updated: Aug 23, 2010 11:06 PM EDT

Omaha Couple Found Dead in Their Home

Jenny Nowatzke

OMAHA (KPTM)- An Omaha couple is found dead inside their home, both suffering from gunshot wounds, after dating for more than nine years.

The bodies of 35–year–old Carlos Johnson and 29–year–old Corina Barry were found Monday afternoon when co–workers called police after not hearing from either one.

Douglas County Sheriff deputies aren't confirming if they are investigating their deaths as a murder–suicide.

Among the cookie cutter houses and manicured lawns sits a crime scene.

"It's a very quiet neighborhood. Don't have a lot of action going on here. This is one for the books I guess," said neighbor Sarah Burns.

Around 2:00 p.m., neighbors learned something was wrong when sheriff's deputies swarmed a house off North 78th Circle Avenue.

"One of the deceased co–workers saw she didn't show up for work today, and called us. That's when we discovered the bodies inside the residence," said Lt. Mark Gentile.

Deputies believe Johnson and Barry may have been shot around ten o'clock Sunday night.

Which was shocking news for parents to hear as they picked their kids up from the bus stop just feet away from the crime scene.

"Came and got [my daughter] and she was freaking out. Walked to the bus stop for the first time today, and she's like – I don't want to walk no more," said Johnetta Florez.

For the most part, neighbors didn't know the couple that well. But never noticed any problems.

"There were no commotions, wasn't like there were cop cars here every weekend," said Burns.

"Very quiet. He'd play basketball out in the driveway," said neighbor Michelle Burianek.

Mark Sandquist was friends with the couple, and just recently started hearing about problems in the relationship.

"From what he told us, there was an altercation 4–5 weeks ago at home. She told him they were going to part ways," said Sandquist.

Sandquist says the boyfriend tried to patch things up, but the girlfriend just wouldn't hear it.

"My thought was, she wasn't on the same side, and he didn't like it."

Friends say, the couple did own a registered gun. Their bodies were found in the master bedroom. Right now deputies are not looking for any suspects.

Back in 2003 Johnson was found guilty of a domestic violence charge. Barry did take out a restraining order against him.

Barry would have celebrated her 30th birthday Saturday.

Warner Robins, GA: Woman dead; estranged husband stabbed in Warner Robins


WARNER ROBINS — Neighbors who found the body of a woman in the doorway of her Warner Robins home Monday morning said they saw the estranged husband drive erratically away shortly before the grisly discovery.
Maria Garcia, 38, was found dead in the front doorway at 102 Murray Place about 7:35 a.m., said Tabitha Pugh, public information officer for Warner Robins police.

DeFrange Leary, who lives next door and was one of the neighbors who found the body, said she was lying in blood, having been shot in the neck. He said a bullet casing was nearby and a handgun was on the floor inside.
The victim’s estranged husband, 44-year-old Jose Garcia, who had been stabbed twice, was found about 7:40 a.m. in the parking lot at Northlake Apartments at 310 Northlake Drive where he lived, Pugh said.
He was taken by ambulance to The Medical Center of Central Georgia where he was in critical condition Monday after undergoing surgery, Pugh said.
Tiffany Ramsey, the other neighbor who found the body, said she saw Jose Garcia hunched over the steering wheel of his sport utility vehicle earlier Monday morning and that he nearly hit a mailbox as he was driving away.
Police believe the two incidents are related and are treating the discovery of the body as a homicide, with foul play suspected, Pugh said.
“We’re not elaborating right now,” Pugh said. “We’re still investigating and interviewing people.”
An autopsy is scheduled for Tuesday, Pugh said.
The couple was married but had been separated for several months, Pugh said. The couple’s children were not at home when the death occurred, Pugh said.
A birthday party for the youngest child was held at Maria Garcia’s home Saturday, neighbors said.
Neighbors Rosa Mooeno and Dario Hernandez said Maria Garcia had come to their home several days earlier asking for help.
“Many days ago, she said the man (Jose Garcia) said, ‘One day, I kill you,’’’ Hernandez said.
Hernandez, who speaks some English, interpreted for Mooeno. Hernandez said he did not hear Maria Garcia say those words but she had confided that to Mooeno, who shared it with him.
Maria Garcia sometimes kept one of Mooeno’s children while she was at work, and Mooeno and Hernandez were caring for her pet dog Monday until a relative could come for it.
Leary said he was returning home Monday morning after dropping his wife off at work when he first saw Maria Garcia lying in the doorway. He said he figured she was watching her children at the nearby bus stop. Leary said he saw Jose Garcia drive away about the same time, nearly striking a mailbox.
Ramsey said she was returning from the school bus stop where she’d taken her son when she saw the body in the doorway. She said she called to Maria Garcia but received no answer. She also had earlier seen Jose Garcia drive erratically away and had noticed that the door was open and that something was blocking it.
Ramsey went and got Leary and the two went over to investigate together. Ramsey called 911, with the 911 operator asking them to do CPR. But Leary said it was too late and that Maria Garcia was obviously dead.
Neighbors said Jose Garcia would often park across the street from Maria Garcia’s home and would visit with their children outside.
Aydee Short, who described herself as a close personal friend of Maria Garcia, said the couple, who had been separated for some time, had four children who range in age from 13 to 18. The children are staying with relatives and friends, Short said.
Maria Garcia was a very sweet person, a hard worker and a very caring mother, Short said.
“Her world was her kids,” Short said.
Anyone with any information about the incident is asked to contact Warner Robins police detectives at (478) 929-6911, or to submit information through the agency’s website at
To contact writer Becky Purser, call 256-9559.

Port Angeles, OR: Organizer links self-defense course to 2008 slaying of friend

By Paige Dickerson
Peninsula Daily News

PORT ANGELES -- A self-defense class for woman and children planned for Sunday will protect in two ways, said the organizer.

It will help potential victims defend themselves, and the profits from the class will go toward purchasing a speed awareness trailer to be parked near Port Angeles schools, said Kristen Chittick, who organized the class.

The class will be in honor of Christin Stock, who was killed by an ex-boyfriend at the age of 35 in February 2008, said Chittick, who was a close friend of the Port Angeles mother of two.

"Christin didn't have anything to defend herself with," Chittick said. "She didn't have any self-defense training.

"But she didn't want to believe he was capable of that. It just goes to show that you never know what someone is capable of, and it is good to be prepared for the worst case," Chittick said.

"The worst case happened to Christin."

Jeffrey Calvert, 41, of Bellingham kicked in the door to Stock's home in Port Angeles, shot her to death, then killed himself with a second gun while Stock's children, who were 9 and 11 at the time, hid in a closet upstairs.

The 2 p.m. class Sunday will be offered for a $10 donation at the playground at Jefferson Elementary School, 218 E. 12th St., where Stock did her student teaching and worked as a substitute teacher.

Those attending the class will be provided water as well as a whistle to carry to use in case of an emergency.

The class will be taught by Ben Sanford, who is the founder and director of Tribal Edge Training Center in Blyn, and will feature Sikal martial arts techniques, Chittick said.

"The police have loaned us a cushion suit so they can really go all out on someone," Chittick said.

"They don't have to hesitate or hold back. They can really fight like they would in a real situation."

Chittick said Healthy Families of Clallam County, based in Port Angeles, will provide information about domestic violence, and she is hopeful a staff member from the organization will attend to speak to women and children about warning signs.

"The thing is, with Christin, all the warning signs were there," she said.

"She just didn't really pay attention or want to believe the bad that was out there."

After a month of stalking and inundating Stock with gifts -- including dozens of roses, videos of himself talking to her as well as videos of him naked and a book with hundreds of photos of them together -- Calvert confronted Stock at her parents' home on Feb. 24, 2008, where she was living.

"We knew it was just a matter of time before he came," Chittick said.

"We didn't know it would be like that. But Christin would have drills with the girls and had even put a phone up in that closet.

"They knew what to do in case Jeff came."

Just five days before the confrontation, Stock had filed a restraining order against Calvert, but it hadn't been processed yet.

"I don't know what the restraining order could have done, though," Chittick said. "He had already been told to leave her alone."

Since Stock's death, her daughters, Saoirse and Daisy, have moved to California to live with their father.

The donations from the class -- as well as about $3,000 in donations that were raised since Stock's death -- will go into the Christin Stock School Safety Fund.

Chittick hopes the fund will earn enough to buy a speed awareness trailer that can be parked near schools. Such trailers show drivers the speed they are traveling and typically cost about $8,000.

"Christin would tell me all the time that she was worried about how fast the cars go around Jefferson" Elementary School, Chittick said.

"In a way, having a trailer would be like her protecting the kids and looking out for them."

To preregister for the class, phone 360-417-9212. Walk-ups are also welcome, but preregistration is requested.


Reporter Paige Dickerson can be reached at 360-417-3535 or at

Sutter, CA: Police: Ex-Boyfriend Killed Parents Of Ex

John LobertiniFOX40 News
August 1, 2010

SUTTER, CA - Warning signs and missed opportunities. That may ultimately sum up the murders of Jack and Susan Martin. The most glaring red flag: why weren't authorities called when this ex-boyfriend began spiraling out of control in recent weeks? Now, 21-year old Joseph Simlick is in the Sutter County Jail facing two counts of murder.

There was a picture perfect family photo hanging in the Martin's home; Jack and Susan and their two daughters. But in the days before the murders they may have been a family under siege. A red truck was seen on the dirt road behind the Martin's home in the days before the crime. A red truck just like the one owned by Simlick. Neighbor Vernon Heinz remembers it well, "He's came by a couple of times in the evenings and drove out of here really fast. I called him on it a couple of times, but he drove by and looked at me like it wasn't important to him."

Until a month ago Simlick dated Kendall Martin, one of the couples' daughters. But the break up wasn't going well, and investigators now confirm Simlick recently held Kendall against her will. Gloria Heinz knew the family was scared after talking to a locksmith who was summoned to the home, "He told me, Jack had insisted that he immediately come over and change all the locks last month because he thought the boy had a key."

But that incident involving Kendall was never reported to the Sutter County Sheriff's Department. In fact, the Sutter County Sheriff's Department didn't even know the name Joesph Simlick until they arrested him hours after firefighters doused the flames that had engulfed the Martin's home. "We believe we have sufficient evidence to prove that Joseph Simlick is responsible for murder of Jack and Suzie Martin," says Captain Lewis McElfresh.

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Investigators won't tell us how the Martin's were killed. FOX 40 uncovered a picture of Simlick in camouflage on a web site promoting hunting and fishing, but there was no information explaining his involvement or expertise.

"I'm glad they got somebody. Sure, I'm glad they got somebody, but it doesn't make me feel any better" A heartbroken Norman Sanders barely raised his voice when asked about the arrest. Sanders raised Jack Martin from the time he was a little boy, "If the district attorney's office was willing to pursue the death penalty, would you support that?" asked FOX 40's John Lobertini. Sanders snapped back, "You bet. I don't want him to have a plea bargain."

Neighbors say the Martins may have also threatened Simlick with a restraining order. On the night of the Murders, Kendall--who would've normally been home---was attending a concert. Vernon Heinz saw Jack Thursday morning, just hours before he was killed, and knew something was wrong "He has that sick frown looking look. I don't know has a desperation look, he's never looked like that."

It's probably going to be a while before the District Attorney decides whether to pursue the Death Penalty.

21 year old Joseph Simlick will be arraigned on two counts of murder Thursday afternoon at the Sutter County Courthouse in Yuba City.

Oakland, CA: Victims identified in 2 Oakland homicides

Henry K. Lee, Chronicle Staff Writer

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

A homeless man stabbed to death in North Oakland, allegedly by his girlfriend, was identified by police Monday as 54-year-old Wallace Scott.

Scott was stabbed in the cab of a Dodge pickup truck parked at the corner of San Pablo and Ocean avenues at about 9:30 p.m. Thursday, police said. Investigators are seeking his girlfriend, Tamara Warren, 39, in connection with the slaying, authorities said.

Scotty, as neighborhood residents knew him, was a transient who suffered from a crack-cocaine addiction and had a tumultuous relationship with Warren, with whom he lived in the pickup truck, residents said.

In a separate slaying, a man shot and killed over the weekend in West Oakland was identified as 26-year-old Walter Harris.

Harris was standing outside a car on the 1700 block of 10th Street, talking to a 28-year-old man inside the vehicle, when someone opened fire at about 4:30 p.m. Saturday, said Officer Holly Joshi, a police spokeswoman.

Harris died at Highland Hospital in Oakland. His companion was shot and critically wounded. No arrests have been made.

E-mail Henry K. Lee at

Coos County, OR: Coos County grand jury indicts boyfriend in 10-year-old Leah Freeman murder

Published: Monday, August 23, 2010, 4:37 PM Updated: Monday, August 23, 2010, 5:09 PM
Lori Tobias, The Oregonian

A Coos County grand jury has indicted a man in the 10-year-old cold case of Leah Freeman, found murdered in June 2000.

Coos County District Attorney Paul Frasier said Nicholas McGuffin, 28, was arrested Monday afternoon on charges of murder and lodged in the Coos County Jail on $2 million bail. McGuffin was Freeman's boyfriend at the time she disappeared and has long been a suspect in the case.

"I am so thrilled," said Cory Courtright , Freeman's mother, Monday afternoon. "Oh my God, I am so thrilled. I know there is a long trial ahead of me. I don't care. I always said I was going to see this through to the end and I will."

Freeman was last seen on June 28, 2000, after leaving a girlfriend's house at about 9 p.m. to walk home. Several people would see the 5-feet-2, 80-plus pound Freeman striding up Central Avenue. But Freeman, who had spent the afternoon with McGuffin and his friend Brent Bartley , 20, never made it home.

Shortly after Freeman left her friends' house, McGuffin showed up looking for her and told police he continued looking for her through most of the night into the wee hours of the next morning.

McGuffin was stopped twice that night by the local police for a missing headlight. Police say at one point he swapped his '67 Ford Mustang for his parent's 1991 Ford Thunderbird, and then again for the Mustang. But the family has denied that.

One of Freeman's Nike shoes was found by the local cemetery the night she went missing. The second shoe, splattered with blood, turned up a week or so later far out of town on a dirt road.

Then, roughly five weeks after she disappeared, county detectives found Freeman's body down a steep, dense embankment about nine miles out of town.

Although police obtained search warrants for McGuffin's cars and questioned both McGuffin and Bartley at length, the case went cold. Then, about two years ago, new police chief Mark Dannels put together a team of detectives to re-examine it.

In June, Frasier announced he was ready to seek the indictment.

"In the very beginning, I didn't believe it was him," said Courtright of McGuffin. "I didn't want to. I don't like believing the fact that he did this. And I know that hasn't been proven yet. But I've got to get this girl her justice. This was my child. She deserves it."

-- Lori Tobias

Long Branch, NJ: Officials: Ex-wife killed man and torched body in car


Police in New Jersey have arrested a 36-year-old woman in connection with death of 42-year-old Stephen Moore, a Huntington Beach native, whose burned body was found Wednesday in the trunk of his mother's car in Long Branch, N.J.
According to a news release issued by the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office on Monday, Kathleen Dorsett, Moore's ex-wife, has been arrested in connection with his death. She has been charged with one count each of first-degree murder and fourth-degree tampering with physical evidence, officials said.

Prosecutors accuse Dorsett of murdering Moore and then concealing his body in the trunk of his mother's burned 2001 Nissan Altima off of Seaview Avenue in Long Branch. Officials say Moore was reported missing Aug. 16 to the Manchester Township Police Department by his employer, a local auto dealer, after he did not report for work that morning.
About 4:10 a.m. Wednesday, Monmouth County dispatchers received several 911 phone calls regarding a fire on Seaview Avenue. Officials say that was when Moore's body was found in the trunk of the burning car. Officials determined with the help of dental records that the body was that of Moore. An autopsy later revealed that Moore's death was a homicide, officials said.
Moore and Dorsett were married in 2007 but divorced in June and had a 20-month-old daughter. Prosecutors say under the terms of their custody agreement, Moore dropped off the child at Dorsett's home in Ocean Township the morning of Aug. 16. He was not seen or heard from after he dropped off his daughter at Dorsett's home, officials say.
Monmouth County Prosecutor Luis A. Valentin said in the release that the investigation is ongoing and police "are actively pursuing numerous leads regarding the circumstances surrounding the victim's death and how his body came to be in the trunk of his mother's burning automobile."
Valentin said authorities are seeking the public's help in identifying anyone who played a role in Moore's death and the disposal of his body.
Dorsett faces life in prison if convicted of the murder charge and an 18-month prison term if convicted of tampering with evidence.
She remains at the Monmouth County Correctional Institution in lieu of a "cash only" $1.5 million bail. Her court appearance and bail review have been scheduled for Tuesday.
Anyone with information about this incident is asked to contact Detective Jeffrey Wilbert of the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office at 800-533-7443, Long Branch Police Department Detective Michael Decker at 732-571-5695, Albert Vega of Manchester Township Police Department at 732-657-6111 or Ocean Township Police Detective Patrick Martin at 732-531-1800.
Contact the writer: 714-796-7909 or

Elizabethtown, KY: Prosecution continues its case in Brent Burke double murder trial

Posted: Aug 23, 2010 5:58 PM EDT
Updated: Aug 23, 2010 6:12 PM EDT

ELIZABETHTOWN, KY (WAVE) - A teenager who initially claimed to be involved in a double murder was in the courtroom as another man stood trial for the crime. Former Army Sgt. Brent Burke is accused of shooting and killing his estranged wife, Tracy Burke, and her former mother-in-law, Karen Comer.

The defense questioned Sgt. Matt Johnson of the Kentucky State Police about bloody items police found in a creek which was initially linked to the double murder. Johnson testified a female came forward who said she was there when a teenager from Rineyville, DeShawn White, when he threw a bloody t-shirt, blanket and towel into a lake.

White lived in the same neighborhood as the victims and police found a bloody backpack at his house. Police say White told at least one person he was involved in the murders.

Trooper Kevin Warrell interviewed White as he got off the school bus not long after the shootings. Warrell testified that White told him he said he was just joking around about being involved.

Police did not name a suspect, but did not go into details as to why not. When the defense did question why the investigation into white didn't go any further, Warrell said he was just told to gather a statement.

White is expected to testify Friday. This trial is the third time the Commonwealth has been Burke for the murders. The first mistrial was because White was not subpoenaed to testify.

KSP's Johnson also took the stand describing to jurors where he thinks the shooter was at the time of the murders.

"We believe that there were a series of four shots outside of the residence from the location of the rear patio," said Johnson.

One went through the glass and another killed a dog. Johnson said he believes the other two hit Comer who was standing outside, but she died inside the home.

"We knew that she was shot outside the doorway because of the blood pattern that was evident on the door as she was, we believe, trying to get inside the door," said Johnson.

Johnson said the shooter then fired twice inside the home.

"We believe that the perpetrator would have been standing somewhere near the corner of this bedroom and shooting directly downward at Ms. Burke as she was lying on the ground in the back of the head," said Johnson.

Defense attorney Chris Davenport fired back, questioning how police knew where the shooter was if they missed three shell casings found two days later by the clean-up crew.

Cape Girardeau, MO: SE Missouri woman pleads guilty in death of woman in relationship with her estranged husband

7:16 AM CDT, August 24, 2010
CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (AP) — A southeast Missouri woman has pleaded guilty to killing another woman out of jealousy.

Tambra Gilmore, who had been known as Tambra Turner, pleaded guilty Monday to second-degree murder and first-degree burglary in the February 2008 death of 20-year-old Chabreshea Egson. She was sentenced to 10 years on each count, to run concurrently.

The Southeast Missourian reports that prosecutors have said the 30-year-old Gilmore, of Sikeston, shot Egson at a Cape Girardeau home because Egson was having a relationship with Gilmore's estranged husband.

The case gained national exposure because Gilmore was a fugitive for over a year. She was arrested in Chicago in June 2009 after a viewer of "America's Most Wanted" phoned in a tip.

Tuscumbia, AL: Jury selection begins for Tuscumbia woman accused of killing her husband

Posted: Aug 23, 2010 1:03 PM EDT
Updated: Aug 23, 2010 1:05 PM EDT

TUSCUMBIA, AL (WAFF) - Jury selection starts Monday for a woman accused of killing her husband.

Brandi Willingham is charged with murder for Devin Willingham's shooting death.

The shooting happened in January at the couple's home in Tuscumbia.

Investigators say Willingham told them she was attempting to commit suicide when her husband tried to stop her.

She says he was trying to wrestle the gun away from her when it went off. Police say the evidence doesn't match her story.

Las Vegas, NV: Two killed in apparent murder-suicide identified

A man and woman killed in an apparent murder-suicide in the northwest valley Thursday were identified Monday.

Edith Corona, 19, of Las Vegas, died from a gunshot wound to the head. Her death was ruled a homicide, according to the Clark County coroner's office.

Jose Zergara Rodriguez, 20, was also killed in the incident. His cause and manner of death was pending.

A family member called Las Vegas police about 5:30 p.m. Thursday and reported that two people had gunshot wounds in a home in the 6800 block of Elm Creek Drive, near Rainbow Boulevard and Gowan Road.

Officers found a man and a woman suffering from gunshot wounds. They were taken to University Medical Center where they were later pronounced dead.

Police said last week that one victim might have suffered a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Homicide detectives are investigating the case.

Contact reporter Mike Blasky at or 702-383-0283.

East Canton, OH: Police investigate apparent murder-suicide in Stark County

Posted: 5:35 AM
Last Updated: 1 hour and 5 minutes ago

By: WEWS News Staff
EAST CANTON, Ohio - Deputies in the Stark County Sheriff's Office are investigating an apparent murder suicide that took place Monday night.

According to police, Daniel Lewton, 51, shot and killed his wife Mary Jane Silva-Lewton, 40, at their residence on Neimans Avenue SE, East Canton. After allegedly killing his wife, police say Lewton turned the gun on himself.

Police responded to the scene around 9:15 p.m., and arrived to find Silva-Lewton responsive in the kitchen, with a gunshot wound to her abdomen. She was transported to Mercy Medical Center, where she died from her injuries.

Daniel Lewton was found dead at the scene with a gunshot wound to the head, police said.

Kansas City, MO: Albertina Acosta, victim of a murder-suicide, is Kansas City's 72nd murder victim in 2010

By Joe Tone, Tue., Aug. 24 2010 @ 6:01AM
Categories: Killa City

​Another marriage has ended in bloodshed, this time in southeast KCMO, where police say 64-year-old Florensio Rojo shot his wife to death and then turned the gun on himself.

A family member found Albertina Acosta, 62, dead in a bedroom at the couple's home, near 27th and Cypress. The witness found Rojo, too -- but he was still alive, the shotgun wounds to his chest not yet enough to kill him. Rojo, a native Chihuahua, Mexico, later died at Truman Medical Center.

Article: Murder-suicide cases on the rise, but why?

by Sarah Bleau
Posted: 08.23.2010 at 6:35 PMUpdated: 2 hrs, 29 mins

ALBANY, GA. -- At least four murder-suicide cases have been reported in the last three months in Southwest Georgia. With this number increasing, what motivates a person to commit such an act? These days, the poor economy is being blamed.

“We’re living in times where people are experiencing a great deal of stress and you just wonder what moves them from hopeful to hopeless,” says Counselor Elaine Gurley.

“A lot of times when people are in a situation where they might be a little bit more focused on finances or something that’s causing them a lot of distress, they’re more likely to react in an inappropriate or over-the-top way because they’re fearful of what kind of results are going to happen,” says Psychologist Dr. Cheryl Kaiser from Insight.

Moving from depression to suicide occurs in a triad: From feeling hopeless, to helpless, to worthless.

“When people are feeling that they’re hopeless in a situation where nothing is ever going to get better, they’re helpless. They don’t have the power to change it and they’re worthless. They don’t feel like they have any value to themselves at all,” says Kaiser.

The recent murder-suicide cases have been linked to financial reasons as the possible cause; even then, some counselors and psychologists still wonder why this happens.

“I’ve wondered was there a pact, an agreement?” says Gurley.

One reason can’t be pinned down for why a person commits a murder-suicide. Psychologists say it depends on each individual. What can be pinned down: Family members left behind feel the effects for a lifetime.

“Not only have they lost, but there were close to the one who perpetrated the violence. Actually, their bereavement often becomes more complicated,” says Gurley.

Counselors say it’s important to inform family members about depression because their guilt could be overwhelming, but cases like murder-suicide are nothing they could have prevented.

Psychologists and counselors say if you feel suicidal, do not walk it off. It's important to seek help from a mental professional

Orion, MI: Suicide, stabbing, fire shatter Orion Township woman's dream


Rosemary Rangi told people the brick colonial nestled in the woods of Orion Township was her dream home.

But the head of the Orion Area Chamber of Commerce found herself lying burned, stabbed and bleeding in the grass outside Sunday as flames rose from the house.

Investigators found her husband, Daljit Rangi, 65, dead in the garage from smoke inhalation and burns. His death was ruled a suicide Monday by the Oakland County Medical Examiner's Office.

It is the second case in less than a week involving murder-suicide among spouses in Oakland County.

Officials don't know how many instances occur in the state each year. The number of murder-suicides among couples is categorized with family violence incidents by the Michigan State Police.

Karen Porter, director of quality assurance for the Michigan Department of Human Service's Michigan Domestic Violence Prevention and Treatment Board, said that should change.

"It helps people understand the depth of the issue and the seriousness of the issue -- that it's more prevalent that people understand or think," Porter said Monday.

Incident eerily like another in Oakland Co. last week
Orion Area Chamber of Commerce director Rangi looked to colleagues and neighbors to be a pillar of society.

The operations director for Crittenton Hospital's medical supply offices in Rochester and Lake Orion became the figurehead for Orion and Oxford businesses in January.

The 56-year-old mother of three talked about becoming a grandmother for the first time, with news that her daughter who lives in Boston is expecting.

And she proudly doted over her daughter who lives at home, a third-year law school student about to start classes this week.

She never talked about problems in what she called her "dream house," say those who know her.

"She didn't talk about anything with that," chamber executive director Alaina Campbell said Monday. "I know this was her dream house -- she saw it and fell in love with it. That's all going to be so difficult, not only her husband, but losing her home as well."

On Sunday, a neighbor followed the plumes of black smoke from the home burning off Greenshield Road just west of Lapeer in Orion Township and found Rosemary Rangi lying bloody and burned in the grass. Rangi told Oakland County Sheriff's Office deputies her husband, retired engineer Daljit Rangi, 65, had stabbed her multiple times in the abdomen. She's expected to recover.

Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard said Monday that the pair had been talking about divorce.

Investigators found the charred body of Daljit Rangi in the garage. His death from burns and smoke inhalation was ruled a suicide Monday by the Oakland County Medical Examiner's Office.

It's the second time in a week domestic violence has brought death to Oakland County. On Wednesday, Ellery Bennett, 47, suffered self-inflicted stab wounds and drove himself to Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, where he told hospital officials that another victim was at his home.

Investigators found his wife, Lisa Bennett, 46, who had filed for divorce Aug. 11, dead from multiple stab wounds and Ellery Bennett's suicide notes in the house. He is in police custody, charged with her death.

State officials estimate that there are about 100 murder-suicides between lovers in Michigan each year. But they say they believe the numbers could be much higher. Those deaths are counted under "family violence" in the Michigan Incident Crime Report published annually by the Michigan State Police. They include the death of anyone with a family relationship, said Karen Porter, director of quality assurance for the Michigan Department of Human Service's Michigan Domestic Violence Prevention and Treatment Board.

Further analysis of those types of cases could help prevent others, she added.

"It's so complicated that it is very difficult to discern what would make something like this happen so close together," she said. "What we know is that there are many causes to domestic violence and it's a social issue that affects many families."

Now the Orion Chamber is collecting donations to help Rosemary Rangi with immediate expenses, through a fund set up at Genisys Credit Union at Silverbell and Lapeer in Orion Township.

"She wanted to give back; she wanted to get to know people in the community," the chamber's executive director said. "We were very shocked at what happened -- had no idea that there was anything amiss. So our hearts and prayers go out to her and her family."

Contact TAMMY STABLES BATTAGLIA: 313-223-4456 or Staff writer Gina Damron contributed to this report.

Fayette County, OH: Bailey wrongful death suit dismissed

Ryan Carter
Assistant Editor

A $2 million federal lawsuit filed in 2008 by the mother of Lori Bailey, claiming county officials and former deputies are responsible for the woman's Nov. 1, 2006 death, has been dismissed from federal court.

The action filed by Nancy Mick was dismissed on July 20, according to officials from the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio in Columbus.

The Record-Herald could not confirm whether a settlement was reached between the two parties.

The suit, filed on behalf of the Lori Bailey estate and her children, alleged that the conduct of the Fayette County Sheriff's Office and Fayette County Commissioners "independently and/or jointly caused (Lori's) death," according to court papers.

On Friday, Sheriff Vernon Stanforth and Commissioners Jack DeWeese and Tony Anderson said they have not been informed of any type of settlement.

Mick's attorney, James W. Kelleher, did not return phone calls last week.

The plaintiff was seeking $1 million in punitive damages, $75,000 in compensatory damages, attorney's fees and "any and all other relief to which the plaintiff is entitled," according to court papers.

On Nov. 1, 2006, Lori Bailey was kidnapped and murdered by her estranged husband, John Bailey. John Bailey then killed himself.

Before the murder-suicide, on Oct. 25, 2006, Lori Bailey, who was killed at the age of 30, obtained a civil protection order from the Fayette County Court of Common Pleas against John Bailey. The order said that John Bailey must immediately vacate the couple's home at 10306 Pearson-Octa Road, that he was required to turn over all of his deadly weapons and that he could not interfere with Lori Bailey's right to occupy the residence.

Former deputies Patricia Bailey- John Bailey's sister-Terry Olsen, Jr. and Ernest Jackson, Jr. were named in the lawsuit and were all charged with crimes and convicted following an investigation into the service of the civil protection order the night of Oct. 25.

All three were at the scene that night and all three were fired from the sheriff's office, as was Corporal John Hyer who was the supervisor when the civil protection order was served to John Bailey.

Patricia Bailey, who was off-duty at the time, arrived at John and Lori's home at around 11:40 p.m. on Oct. 25, according to testimony during her trial. Earlier, she had received phone calls from her brother and Hyer about the service of the protection order.

When Patricia arrived, Olsen, Jackson, John and John's son were already in the house. Patricia read the civil protection order and said that a certain box on the order wasn't checked and therefore, John was allowed to cause damage to the home.

All three former deputies allowed John Bailey to cause over $25,000 worth of damage to the inside of the Bailey home.

The complaint, which was the basis of the plaintiff's lawsuit, said that Patricia Bailey ordered Olsen and Jackson to permit John Bailey to retain one or more deadly weapons in direct violation of the protection order. It also said that Patricia Bailey, Jackson and Olsen permitted John Bailey's son, a minor, to carry weapons out of the home.

After Stanforth learned of the incident on Oct. 25, 2006, he had John Bailey arrested on Oct. 26, 2006 for violation of the protection order, a felony charge. He posted bond in Washington Municipal Court and was released that day. It was only a week later that he killed Lori.

During an interview with Stanforth after the lawsuit was filed, he said the investigation of what happened on Oct. 25 led to the firing of four deputies and also led to criminal charges against three of them.

"We've been very open throughout this entire process," Stanforth said at the time. "We haven't hid anything or glossed anything over. It is a tragedy what happened to Lori. I knew her as a small child and it was an emotional time for all of us. Her murder was a separate incident from what happened during the service of the protection order. We took a strong position and held those accountable that should have been held accountable for their actions on Oct. 25, 2006. It was a hard thing to do to fire deputies, but that is what needed to be done."