Even a speck of common sense tells us that the shortest way to get from one point to another always takes the path of a straight line. Following a meandering road that zigs left and zags right is surely less efficient than taking a direct route. We hold these truths to be self-evident.
Often, upon tackling a story, I’ll familiarize myself with the geographical location of the crime scene and get a flavor of the demographics that comprise the area of interest. It generally serves no purpose other than pacifying certain curiosities within myself and if, for some reason they prove to be interesting enough, I’ll include a portion of my findings as a prelude to the tale.
I found nothing particularly noteworthy in Paris, Illinois; the demographics seemed to reflect a quintessential little town in the Midwest with a population a little over 8,500. That was before I stumbled upon the description of Vance Park, “a hushed quiet place that’s perfect for meditation”. Vance Park is a sunken garden that hosts a serpentine wall and at the far end of this little oasis, a lion’s head fountain. I have to wonder if this tiny community realizes the stark symbolism between Vance Park’s settings and the real life events that culminated in murder, the rigidly straight wall of justice made serpentine by the pre-existing factors that led a once quiet and reserved young man;s actions to emulate a lion’s roar.
Let’s meet the accused, 16-year-old Terry Payton. (more…)
Worcester County, Pennsylvania I’ve some friends who’re wonderful with situational fabrication. Upon listening to them, I know they’re completely full of shit but the tale is so awesome I find myself pretending it occurred right along with them. Then I have friends (they’re in the minority) who lack this talent. When they spin their story, it’s painfully obvious they’re trying to get me to believe their crap. And because I’m not one to accept being force-fed bullshit, I enjoy the little cat and mouse game. I sit and listen until I’ve allowed them to arm me with enough inconsistencies that I start pelting them with questions to hear how they dig themselves out. It always ends up the same way: a change of subject. Are we really so apt to believe everything that comes out of someone’s mouth or have we become so detached that we just don’t really listen to ourselves or anyone else now? Because surely, if some people did listen to what spilled out of the gaping hole in their face, they’d take a vow of silence. This little “pull up” comes a bit late for Steven Molin who once again has proven it’s best to be thought an idiot than to open the mouth and remove all doubt. (more…)
East St. Louis, Illinois Number 1, avoid East St. Louis like the plague. You’ll immediately know you’re there because, like Lewis Black describes North Korea, it’s so evil the color has completely been sucked out. And the monkeys from the Wizard of Oz live there. Think I’m kidding? Test me if you dare. It’s not a good place. Now even though downtown St. Louis proper is cool, there are still places there that creep me the fuck out.
St. Louis is built on the banks of the Muddy Mississippi with the downtown area right along those banks. It’s really a neat place to walk around – parts of the riverfront have been completely restored into quaint little restaurants and shops. But right next door to those restored beauties are abandoned warehouses that look as though they’ve housed some form of torture chambers. And
running walking past them, I could swear sometimes if my heart wasn’t pounding a deafening beat in my eardrums, screams could be heard. And guess what? It turns out I’m a psychic. Those freaky little mini-movies that have played out in 3-second segments in my mind came true in one East St. Louis warehouse. (more…)
Ensley, Florida There’s no derision that can be shared with this story. I may poke fun at some of the crimes because some just don’t seem “real”. I mean, who seriously can imagine or picture someone cutting up another person? I know those things happen because I actually seek those stories out for some sick reason. I can separate myself from it all because, as I said, it’s just so fucked up it makes it easy to tackle. But this story: this entails a sick and evil mind that would savagely torture someone to a certain and painful death. Now, compound that evilness a couple more times and it makes it mind-boggling that 3 people could act this maliciously, in a premeditated barbaric manner, with a goal of turning another human being from a 19-year-old mother into a scared, bloody, and flaming heap of flesh screaming for her life. (more…)
Fort Lauderdale, Florida I envy the crime authors who are granted access to criminals for interviews. I don’t know, perhaps if I actually tried to, I could figure a way to get some of my questions answered. But as twisted as I am, I’m not quite sure how I’d feel about some most all these asses knowing who I am. I’d be willing to weigh the pros and cons if I were guaranteed answers though. I am selective. Why these fuckers find small children attractive enough to rape them isn’t my bag. That shit makes me so sick – I don’t want any answers. Hell, I can’t even begin the attempt of wrapping my mind around that. I am fascinated with the bizarre and the insanely stupid crimes/criminals…like our new subject Jose Alfaro. When is a freezer ever a good idea for disposing of a dead body? (more…)
Ashland, IL I’m not quite sure how I feel about the two latest stories I’ve featured being in close proximity to where I was raised. It really was a neat place to grow up…safe. And I suppose, to some extent, it still is a great environment to start and rear a family. That is: if you’re not needing police protection from the Rushville or Ashland Police Departments. Yesterday’s feature story was the tale of Ryan Jones, a 22-year-old who lost his life in a “vehicular accident” and the police allegedly lied about the entire scene. Today’s feature is focusing on the one-year-old murder of Steven Watkins in Ashland, Illinois – where it took a year to make an arrest when there were three adults in that home. I’m not sure if Chief Birdsell thought it was a prime opportunity to conduct a holiday home tour or what was bouncing around that noggin of his – nonetheless, he allowed contamination by not securing the crime scene as there were many in and out of that house. Oh, that and not conducting a gun shot residue test…not calling the Cass County Coroner…the list is vast. After completing the story on Rushville’s PD, I really thought they would win the competition for biggest fuck up. I made that decision in haste. (more…)