In an unprecedented move
, former United States press secretary James Brady's death has been ruled a homicide, 33 years after he was shot by John Hinckley Jr
of the incident at the Washington Hilton and a sweet rememberance of "Bear"
When the Bough Breaks.
"Children often can’t tell detectives what happened to them. But their injuries always tell a story. The essence of a child abuse investigation is determining the plausibility of an adult’s story, given the child’s condition. Could the child have sustained the injuries by falling off a bed, tumbling down stairs, or any number of accidents that parents routinely describe? Or does the story fail to account for the injuries?" A profile of Sergeant Brenda Nichols, the head of the Dallas Police Department’s Child Abuse Squad, and one of her cases. (SFW, but the article contains graphic descriptions of child abuse that some readers may find disturbing.)
"Debate has surrounded the legalization of marijuana for medical purposes for decades.
Some have argued medical marijuana legalization (MML) poses a threat to public health and safety, perhaps also affecting crime rates ... we analyzed the association between state MML and state crime rates ... Results did not indicate a crime exacerbating effect of MML on any of the Part I offenses. Alternatively, state MML may
be correlated with a reduction in homicide and assault rates, net of other covariates." (Press Release
) [more inside]
For over five years, journalist and TV presenter Ding Yu headed up a massively popular Chinese TV talk show.
Every week, She would sit down with convicted murderers and interview them about their life and crimes, before they were taken out and put to death by either firing squad or lethal injection. The show, "Interviews Before Execution"
, was taken off the air in March 2012. [more inside]
The UK Peace Index [PDF]
, a new publication from The Institute for Economics and Peace
(IEP), has produced a startling new headline: against public perceptions of crime
, both crime and homicide have fallen significantly. The fall over the last decade has resulted in the UK homicide rate now being roughly equivalent to that of the Western European average, and it is now at its lowest level since 1978. [more inside]
With six homicides, Saturday August 18th tied with an unseasonably warm February day for the dubious honor of Chicago's deadliest day
, bringing the year's death total to over 340. Chicago is now one of the world's deadliest cities
, much worse than the more populous NYC
, even earning comparisons to Kabul.
Possible culprits include failed urban policies
, concentrated poverty
, and gangs
(and counterintuitively, the fact that some are fractured and poorly run
Brian Vander Lee remains on life support, after being hit in the head
at a restaurant on Sunday, by Minneapoiis police sergeant David Clifford. Although Vander Lee is expected to live, many do not
. One punch homicides
are more common than you might think.
"At 9 a.m. the next day, Tuomisto called police and turned himself in."When will I get to tell my story?" he asked from the back of the squad car.
"Fucking one punch," he said. "I don't know how this happened."
In addition to removing the duty to retreat when outside the home, Florida's 2005 "Stand Your Ground" law removed the civil liability to offenders who had acted within the law and added a presumption of reasonable belief of imminent harm necessitating a lethal response. These three elements were present in over 20 other state laws similar to Florida's. The following NBER working paper
by two Texas A&M economists provides new statistical evidence that these laws caused a 7 to 9 percent increase in homicides and non-negligent manslaughter. Consider this post a companion to this previously
, as well as this previously
. [more inside]
Between 40 and 50 percent of female homicide victims are killed by their husbands, boyfriends, and exes. And, for about half of these victims, police had been alerted to previous incidents of abuse. There is, however, one exception to this grim trend: Maryland. Since 2007, domestic violence homicides in the state have fallen by a stunning 40 percent. What is Maryland doing that other states are not? The answer appears to lie with a former high school nurse, an ex-Washington, D.C., police lieutenant, and their ground-breaking efforts to protect the most vulnerable victims of abuse.
is an article by Tim Stelloh about new method to identify and protect abused women, developed by a group of law enforcement officers and academics (Note: The article features graphic descriptions of domestic violence and murder). The article focuses especially on the work of Prof. Jacquelyn Campbell. You can watch an interview with her here
About one person is murdered every 35 minutes in Mexico. Statistics are bland, so the WSJ decided to track down the 25 murders on July 29th
, an ordinary day of death.
The Lazarus File. "In 1986, a young nurse named Sherri Rasmussen was murdered in Los Angeles. Police pinned down no suspects, and the case gradually went cold. It took 23 years—and revolutionary breakthroughs in forensic science—before LAPD detectives could finally assemble the pieces of the puzzle. When they did, they found themselves facing one of the unlikeliest murder suspects in the city’s history." [more inside]
's 18-year old son Henry
lost his battle with drug addiction in May 2010. Since his death, a scholarship fund to send teenagers to rehab
has been started in his honor, a short documentary on his life
has been posted online, and his mother is using her blog
to seek justice for those involved in his death. The Introduction
and Parts 1
of her quest have been posted, with more to come.
Oakland, California, is bracing
for a possible repeat of the 2009 riot
] once a verdict
in the trial of former BART
cop Johannes Mehserle for the 2009 shooting of Oscar Grant
] comes in. [more inside]
TV serials, says Richard Beck, self-consciously set out from the very beginning to get us to take them seriously. From Hill Street Blues
to The West Wing
to The Sopranos
and The Wire
, how the television series convinced us that it was art
— and now, why Lost
's achievement of success via casual genre mixing and narrative derangement might signal that there's no future creative ground left within the old limits of serial drama.
A new study
of death penalty deterrence by researchers from Sam Houston State University and Duke University suggests that there is a decline in murders
in the month of or after executions. Meanwhile, Kenneth Mosley
became the 448th
inmate executed in Texas since 1982 on January 7th, 2010. (Last link: previously
Henry Rollins: The Death of Joe Cole
: Part 1
, Part 2
. About 17 minutes total, but, God, worth it.
Murder: New York City.
A map pinpointing murders in the five boroughs of NYC from 2003-09. Broken down by time of day, weapon used, age, sex and ethnicity of both victim and perpetrator. Not surprisingly, in the heat of summer the body count rises
. [more inside]
"A detective does his job in the only possible way. He follows the requirements of the law to the letter -- or close enough so as not to jeopardize his case. Just as carefully, he ignores that law's spirit and intent. He becomes a salesman, a huckster as thieving and silver-tongued as any man who ever moved used cars or aluminum siding -- more so, in fact, when you consider that he's selling long prison terms to customers who have no genuine need for the product.
" [more inside]
Public gatherings restricted? Check. Shutdown of independent businesses? Check. Lockdown on traffic and transportation in the area? You bet. Lawmakers in Baltimore trying to curb the city's homicide rate (already 108 this year) have come up with some "desperate measures"
of questionable constitutional legality, including heightening police presence in order to lockdown streets in "emergency areas." It has been called, "partial martial law" by some, and one has to wonder if the city of Baltimore may not do better to take a page from The Wire's Hamsterdam
for a solution to their inextricably linked drug and homicide issues.
Iranian Supreme Court Acquits Murderers Because They Killed the "Morally Corrupt"
"Iran's Islamic penal code
...says murder charges can be dropped if the accused can prove the killing was done because the victim was morally corrupt. ... This is true even if the killer mistakenly identified the victim as corrupt. ... examples of moral corruption that do permit bloodshed, including armed banditry, adultery by a wife and insults to the Prophet Muhammad."
Evelyn: The Cutest Evil Dead Girl
A little Burton, a little Seuss, and pretty darn enjoyable. If you don't like youTube, you should probably stay away.
In 1977 Chris Haynes, a set decorator for The Six Million Dollar Man was setting up a scene to be filmed on location in the spookhouse ride of a Long Beach, CA amusement park called The Pike. While moving the various interior props around, Haynes discovered that the paper mache "mummy" hanging in the corner of the ride was in fact a homicide victim
, a fact that had gone unnoticed by years of amusement park visitors. The story of how
Elmer McCurdy's body was shot to death in 1911, only to be re-discovered & buried
over six decades later, makes for an interesting read.
The Homicide Report, by Jill Leovy:
An L.A. Times
blog built on the list of homicide victims reported to the Los Angeles County Coroner's Office each week.
Murder Map Mashup: New York
, and New Orleans
have all mapped Google to murder.
The Reid Technique
, David Simon writes of the homicide detective: "He becomes a salesman, a huckster as thieving and silver-tongued as any man who ever moved used cars or aluminum siding---more so, in fact, when you consider that he's selling long prison terms to customers who have no genuine need for the product." But how does that detective do it? How can someone get you to willingly confess to something you did--or didn't
--do? The Reid Technique
Developed by John Reid
, (who kindly shares with us the tricks detectives use)
the technique lets an interviewer look at every aspect
of a suspect's behavior
, sometimes giving them enough rope
to hang themselves.
Forewarned, however, is forearmed. Can you beat the rap if you know what's facing
you, once you get in the box
? (Hint: Watch your eyeballs!)
Murders this week: 4; Murders this year: 105
The Baltimore City Paper tracks murders in Charm City week to week. (Check the archive on the right of the page for previous weeks.) Of course, in a city where the most popular underground video is called "Stop Fucking Snitching, Vol. 1
," the murder rate can be tough to control.
Priest convicted in 1980 nun-slaying.
The 71-year-old nun was found on Good Saturday 1980 strangled to death, stabbed 27-32 times, wrapped in an altar cloth with her under-garments around her ankle. Abuse victim
Jane Doe re-opens 1980 case
with account of childhood Satanic ritual abuse
. Was there a cover up
by the diocese?
The American Civil Liberties Union today made public an analysis of new and previously released autopsy and death reports of detainees held in U.S. facilities in Iraq and Afghanistan, many of whom died while being interrogated. The documents show that detainees were hooded, gagged, strangled, beaten with blunt objects, subjected to sleep deprivation and to hot and cold environmental conditions. The documents released today are available online...U.S. Operatives Killed Detainees During Interrogations in Afghanistan and IraqThe Bush administration has proposed exempting employees of the Central Intelligence Agency from a legislative measure endorsed earlier this month by 90 members of the Senate that would bar cruel and degrading treatment of any prisoners in U.S. custody... "This is the first time they've said explicitly that the intelligence community should be allowed to treat prisoners inhumanely," said Tom Malinowski, the Washington advocacy director for Human Rights Watch. "In the past, they've only said that the law does not forbid inhumane treatment." Now, he said, the administration is saying more concretely that it cannot be forbidden.Cheney Plan Exempts CIA From Bill Barring Abuse of Detainees
Girl murders mother, posts about it
on her blog
. Oh yes, it's real
. Many of the 1300+ comments on her last entry are defending her actions, or saying it's unfair to judge her. (via Waxy
Homicide in Chicago: 1870-1930 July 25, 1899
Murphy, James, 28 years old, shot dead, saloon 1210 Wabash Av., by Lorezo Sodini, proprietor. Murphy refused to pay for drinks and ran out of saloon and threw stone through window. Sodini ran out and fired at him, killing him instantly. Harrison St. Station. Held by Coroner's Jury, July 29. Acquitted Dec. 9, 1899, by jury in Judge Baker's court.
Case number: 1498
Remember the woman arrested for allowing her kids to be sunburned
at a county fair? What's she doing now? Sadly one of her children has died and it has been ruled a homicide
So if bigfoot
can be used as an insanity defense when on trial for triple homicide
, what does that say for those who actually believe
Well, at least the incarcerated can do some light reading
while waiting for trial.