commentary by Patrick H. Moore

There’s little doubt that most of us at times have fantasized about being something (or someone) other than who we are. For example, in my (not so) secret moments, I sometimes veer into the world of dark fantasy and imagine that I am a HIT MAN busily “taking out” enemies real and imagined. Well, not really… :-) But I’ve certainly fantasized about lighting it up in the NBA or passing for 5,000 yards and 50 touchdowns in an NFL season.

bug5The fact of the matter, however, is that there are plenty of otherwise “normal” Americans who fantasize about working in law enforcement, especially in the FBI or the Secret Service, to such a degree that they order more or less authenticate looking badges, rent office space in government buildings, and do everything they can to convince folks that they actually are law enforcement officials. I even represented one of these strange birds 5 or 6 years ago. The judge was amused but not so amused as to give the fellow probation (I believe he was sentenced to about 6 months in a Federal camp for impersonating a Federal officer).

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by Lise LaSalle

On May 19, 1983, Elizabeth Diane Downs and her three small children were shot on a country road near Springfield, Oregon. Her 7-year old daughter Cheryl died but her 3-year old son Danny and her 8-year old daughter Christie survived. Within three weeks, Diane had lost custody of her remaining wounded children and had become the number one suspect in the eyes of the police department and District Attorney’s office.

This case flew under my radar so to speak because it happened before my ‘time’. I had nonetheless heard of the legendary Diane Downs; the cruel sociopath who had sacrificed her own children to be free to pursue a relationship with the man she loved. I must humbly admit that I had not questioned the facts of the case before readily accepting this image of Diane as a cold blooded killer. I know better now than to accept blindly the truth presented to us on a silver platter by the media and the judicial system.

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posted by Patrick H. Moore

On February 6, 1943, the famed film actor Errol Flynn, after a month-long trial, was acquitted of the rapes and statutory rapes of Peggy Satterlee and Betty Hansen. The jury deliberated for 13 hours before returning with their unanimous not guilty verdict. According to Trove, Flynn, who had been uncharacteristically subdued throughout the lengthy ordeal, shouted gleefully upon hearing the good news:

Gosh! I feel like whooping!

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by BJW Nashe

“Getting away with murder” now serves as a euphemism for avoiding the consequences of just about any kind of bad behavior. In its most literal sense, however, the phrase points to an especially troubling phenomenon — serial killings committed by psychopaths who somehow manage to avoid being caught and convicted of their crimes. The Zodiac Killer, who terrified the San Francisco Bay Area in the late 1960s and early 1970s with a string of murders accompanied by bizarre cryptograms and letters to the press, is probably the most famous murderer who was never captured. The Zodiac is not alone, however.  Our recent history is littered with unsolved mass murders. The following rogue’s gallery — presented in no particular order, since they are all equally hideous — lists some of the ones who got away with the worst crimes imaginable.

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commentary by Patrick H. Moore

Although it’s rare, I’ve been known to occasionally go out on a limb and make dictatorial pronouncements that while not intended to offend, nonetheless anger certain folks. Today’s pronouncement is very simple. Children’s social services should routinely check up on any child who is being home-schooled. Why do I say this? Simple. During the many long, painful months we’ve been running All Things Crime Blog, we’ve seen repeated instances of home-schooled children being severely abused by their home-schooling parents. Coincidence? I think not. Rather, I suspect that parents who refuse to allow their kids to attend regular school will prove, in all too many cases, to have something very ugly to hide.

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by BJW Nashe

When I lived in Santa Cruz, California from 1982-87, I had no idea that this pleasant seaside town was once dubbed “The Murder Capital of the World.” By the time I moved there to attend UC Santa Cruz, where I majored in philosophy (with an unofficial minor in hallucinogens), there was little or no mention of murder. The mass killing had occurred a decade earlier. The only murders I recall were found in existentialist novels by Albert Camus and Fyodor Dostoevsky. I lived a block and half from the sea. We liked to stroll along West Cliff Drive late at night. Everything seemed perfect.

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by Patrick H. Moore

There is a new Reality TV show called “Parents from Hell and the Children They Abuse” that is Number One with a Bullet. The object of the game is to determine which set of “parents from hell” will stay in the competition until the bitter end and win the Evil Parents of the Year award. The key factors that go into the judging are — in no particular order:

  1. The Hideousness of the Child Abuse
  2. The Creativity of the Child Abuse
  3. The Length of the Prison Sentence the Parents Ultimately Receive

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We here at All Things Crime Blog extend a warm welcome to Yalonda Laugh. Yalonda is a Karla Homolka super-sleuth and is the main author of this post. We thank her for digging deep and providing us with a fascinating depiction of Karla’s childhood.

by Yalonda Laugh with analysis from Patrick H. Moore

tedThe question of who Karla Homolka really is has baffled people all across Canada and the United States (and the rest of the world) ever since the trial of Paul Bernardo in February 1993 , when the ex-accountant from Price Waterhouse and soon to be ex-husband of Homolka was arrested for the rapes and murders of Canadian schoolgirls Leslie Mahaffy and Kristen French. Followers of this compelling case are universally aware that in return for testifying at trial against Bernardo, Homolka received what many consider to be a “sweetheart” plea deal, a mere 12 years in prison. Bernardo, on the other hand, received the maximum term allowable by Canadian law — life imprisonment. Karla Homolka currently resides in Guadeloupe in the West Indies with her husband and three young children. She has for all intents and purposes reinvented herself. Is she happy? No one really knows except perhaps those closest to her. Does she sleep well at night? Again, no one knows.

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All Things Crime Blog has been posting excerpts from Nicholas Frank’s book, Destructive Justice, in which he tells the story of how his 17-year-old son, Nathan, received several life sentences for an armed robbery in which no one was injured. Now, we here at ATCB have been asked to post articles by Nathan himself (whose real name is Tyler). It turns out that there’s more than one good writer in the family.

by Tyler (May 18, 2014)

I awake to the usual sound of toilets flushing. A population of men going about their daily rituals and morning processes. With my eyes remaining closed, I begin to focus on and separate each distinctive noise. I hear the “yard door” open and close, followed by the “grill-gate” (heavy metal bars) informing me that shift change is taking place for the Correctional Officers. A new batch of custody staff, here to begin their own hours of concrete confinement. I know that just like us (convicts), some of those personnel will be irritable, angry, happy, alert, sluggish, and overall not pleased to be here – a wide variety of emotion and personalities for all to contend with.

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by BJW Nashe

Sid Vicious and Nancy Spungen’s death-trip punk romance culminated in her murder in October, 1978, followed by his death from a heroin overdose in early 1979. For thirty years, the prevailing view held that Sid, the troubled Sex Pistols’ bassist, was the one who fatally stabbed Nancy in their room at Manhattan’s infamous Chelsea Hotel. In 2009, a documentary film called Who Killed Nancy? was released, which drew upon “new evidence” to show that Vicious was most likely innocent of the murder. Several news outlets followed up with stories questioning the established version of events. The main point was that Sid was too incapacitated from drugs to kill anyone on the night of Nancy’s death, so comatose from the massive dose of sedatives (30 Tuinals) he had gobbled that he couldn’t even lift a knife, let alone stab anyone.

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