Sep 30, 2009

Man charged in Connecticut home invasion wants co-defendant prosecuted for talking to writer

I never thought I'd agree with one of the defense attorneys for these two men, but regarding
this one issue, I am in absolute agreement, although clearly for very different reasons.
Komisarjevsky should be held in contempt of court for breaking the gag order on this case, but more importantly his attorneys should also be held accountable-a notion that is fast becoming extinct in our Connecticut judicial system-accountability.
The attorneys for komsiarjevsky were, according to the author, Brian Mcdonald, aware of the book and the meetings and letters he was exchanging with their client for the purposes of the book.
And The reasons that I was already convinced that they knew about this book are multifold;
About a month ago there was an article in the Hartford Courant about this VERY Book coming up for publication in late September. The article and the proposed book had people in an uproar--and there was a great deal of attention given the fact that it was based on one josh komisarjevsky's versions of the events of this horrible night.

I remember my interest being quite piqued by the "coincidence" that here was a book from the narrative of komisarjevsky and just weeks ago this same defendant"s attorneys were trying to get segments of his "confession" read at a recent hearing re the Petit crimes. The judge saw fit to seal the confession" as he undoubtedly saw through the attorneys true motivation,which was to get testimony proclaiming his clients innocence without his client actually testifying and injecting this all into the court of public opinion before this guys trial or jury selection.

In fact I distinctly recall hearing komisarjevskys lawyer recently saying if "josh'confession is to be believed, he is guilty of felony murder but not capital murder(the distinction of course matters a great deal as only capital murder may carry a death penalty sentence.They have been reiterating from the start that their client, although guilty of many things, did not kill any of the Petit family members.

Now if the attorneys for JK truly knew nothing prior to the article in the courant, (which I don't believe for a moment) they certainly had ample enough time to investigate the book at that point which was then slated for a Sept 29th publication-a month from the date of this article-And they most certainly could have tried to take some kind of legal action halting its publication pending an investigation into a violation of a court ordered gag concerning the case.

Of course they did no such thing. I contend it was because they knew about the book and they knew that it was in fact a version of their clients "confession" which in effect discounted all responsibility for the murders themselves not to mention the added bonus of supplying plenty of sympathetic background on komisarjevskys childhood in order to lay the foundation for the tired old 'sexually abused found out hes adopted becomes drug addicted teen then disturbed young adult defense. In other words ... "of course this guy wound up breaking into homes look at what a terrible childhood he had" yada yada ya.
You'll recall that komsiarjevsky had no drugs in his system the night of the murders, this means that this guy was probably staying clean for his parole urine tests because he could be violated and sent back to prison if he was caught using drugs. This means that these crimes were fueled by nothing but a despicable desire to control and exert power over defenseless women-and children as poor little Michaela Petit-the object of komisarjevskys lust and domination- was only 11 years old.

Komisarjevskys attorney had the nerve to say, a day or so ago I've never SPOKEN
with Mcdonald ..l guess I'm gonna have to read this book now" Absolute BS and typical lawyer-speak-to boot. You ll note that he doesn't say anything really when stating that he's never spoken to the author- This doesn't mean anything at all yet it could sound as if he didn't know of McDonald's existence-which he didn't say-because it isn't true.

The author shared in interviews with the media recently that once the dept of corrections learned he was a writer-writing a book on the crimes with komisarjevskys help-they took him off the visiting list at the prison. He added that they took komisarjevskys parents off the list at that same time, presumably as a punishment and or because they couldn't trust that his parents wouldn't act as a go between for the author and komisarjevsky. The author adds that he felt it was probably"his fault" that Komisarjevskys parents were taken off the list.

Obviously komisarjevskys lawyers knew about his visitor list being restricted -especially as they were probably the only ones allowed to visit after these episodes with the violations.
This happened many many months prior to the book being published and again that left plenty of time for his lawyers to take action preventing this book from being published.
But they did nothing of the kind-in fact they acted as if there were no book and indeed when the book was released they insulted all of our intelligences by in effect saying"huh what book?
Why would we allow our client to help co author a book when his trial hasn't even come up?"
Why indeed.

I am thoroughly disgusted as a human being and a writer by this book. I find it particularly offensive that the author-and I use that term loosely as the book is written poorly and even edited badly, knew what he was dealing with and knew how painful this would be to the surviving victim and the families-and he did it anyway.
You can see that it was a rush job with little concern for truth or quality. The publisher and writer were trying to make a fast buck off senstationalizing a vicious crime that left two girls and their mother dead and a state traumatized and heartbroken. We've had two years to heal and this book has ripped the scab right off our collective wound. And the crimes haven't even been tried in a court of law yet. There has been no justice to help ameliorate the pain, not even a date set for a trial for either defendant.

The authors recent assertions that he had no idea when the case would be tried and just
did his job and "wrote the book"and the rest was the publishers problem"-doesn't hold water.

As a writer of this kind of content-true crime-you have a responsibility to both the deceased victims and especially any surviving victims. And you most certainly do not ever hamper the judicial proceedings for any murder case that has not yet been resolved criminally. Period.
It's called human decency-professional and personal integrity. This man has shown none and may it sit on his soul for eternity along with the attorneys in this case who have behaved so badly.

The writer and publisher of this book have not only compromised the outcome of the trials and quite possibly whether or not justice will be served in this case- they have given a forum to a socipath and a murderer. Within this they have gifted the notoriety that he craves and the ability to reach out to an unlimited amount of people who are not able to discern truth from lies-who are not savvy to the manipulativeness and easy deciet akin to sociopaths, and therefore allow his version" to stand as truth to the masses .

As someone who has studied sociopaths ad nauseum It is easy for me to see through this book
to see through Joshua komisarjevsksys motivations and his seemingly random descriptions- within the story of"his life"as well as the events surrounding the crimes against the Petit family. Nothing is random in what this man chose to "share" with the author and the readers of this book who remember encompass his ultimate jury pool. The same jury who will decide his fate. Each and every nuance used to describe happenings of the evening and morning of July 23rd 2007 were so used for a specific reason and a desired effect.

One cannot help but notice that every piece of information that Komisarjevsky chose to "share"
bout these crimes were connected to pre-existing key evidence that was of the most damning nature towards him. Many of these things were already known by the general public via the introduction of heavily redacted warrants that were published in the local newspapers -others were heard about through law enforcement testimony/leaks and via other evidenciary findings In other words Komisajevsky knew these things were out there and really making him look bad and so he sought to "explain"them away through this book.

An example is that we knew that the Petits 17 year old daughter Hayely was beaten during the crimes, Dr Petit has made mention of this within a statement to the press; komisajevskys just happens to relate a scene in the book where Hayley has gotten to her cell phone and tries to call 911 (heartbreaking to read ) and he is "forced"to call Hayes in to wrestle her back onto the bed.

This is an obvious attempt to make some kind of excuse for beating and torturing Hayley Petit, as otherwise he would seem a simply despicable sadist -something he is trying like hell to avoid and indeed instead pin that persona on his co-accomplice Steven Hayes who is frequently described by komisarjevsky as the more violent and evil of the two,
(If there could be such a distinction in the first place.)

Another example is a vivid description he gives of his co accomplice hayes maniacly laughing as he existed the flaming home on sorghum.Drive. We had all read police eyewitness testimoney that said that both men were laughing as they ran out of the burning house. I remember this well as it was yet another piece of evidence that proved these men were utterly despicable and callous towards their victims, who they'd just left to die tied to thier beds in the fire.

Komisarjevsky thought he'd get rid of that picture of him that the public had in one fell swoop by simply rewriting history;hed paint himself as "horrified" by his co- accomplice's maniacal laughter as he ran out of the house thereby " explaining" that it wasnt him that was laughing--it was hayes-he was"the bad one".komisarjevsky was just there.

The Trouble with komisarjevsky is that he is a sociopath after all and as such, he gives himself away despite himself- sharing things like " Hayley looked at him with defiance throughout the entire ordeal" I believe that this is why he likely got violent with Hayley-she wouldn't submit and was obvious with her disgust and loathing of him. This infuriated him as the entire set of crimes was about him feeling power and control,which he also gives away despite himself early on in the book when he states that right before hitting poor Dr Petit with the bat as he slept, he couldn't wait to " be in control of the entire domicile"

I simply cannot wait until these men get their due.

Man charged in Connecticut home invasion wants co-defendant prosecuted for talking to writer

For more information about this book see yesterdays post.

Sep 26, 2009

Book That Gives One Defendant's Version Of Cheshire Killings Coming Out Before Trials --

Ok,,the time has come where I must weigh in on this despicable book that has been released concerning the Petit family murders. The book, simply put, is nothing but subterfuge.
An orchestrated attempt by a textbook sociopath, undoubtedly with complete aforeknowledge and blessing of his attorney(s)-to get his "version" of this set of brutal violent crimes out to the potential jury pool and softening up public sentiment for this reprobate via the ole abused childhood defense The ultimate goal... avoiding a death penalty conviction.

Its a fairly clever attempt; Komisarjevsky clearly thinks that because he shares with the reader what seems like a multitude of self incriminating details about the crimes, he is thus likely to be believed regarding the rest of his story- because after all, why tell the truth about some things and lie about the rest? Why indeed.
When dealing with sociopaths, nothing is ever what it seems.

The book was a tool, an opportunity for this defendant to re-work and tweak, if you will, much of the worst of the incriminating evidence against him. Some of this evidence we the public already heard about, and the rest, we would hear soon enough once his accomplice Steven Hayes- trial was underway. In this tweaking, Komisarejvsky predictably lays all technical capital murder culpability at his accomplices feet, albeit, his assertions easily contradicted by police accounts and key evidence when one bothers to look closely.

An example of one of these lies would be jK's claim that Hayes ran out of the burning house "maniacally laughing." A piece of information that might appear on its surface to be almost moot from a criminal/ legal standpoint, yet it is very important in the overall scheme of things; komisarjevsky and his lawyers knew this and this is likely why it was selected as something he elaborated about or as the case is-explained away anecdotally via a literal re-creation if you will of those circumstances; Of course, komisarjevsky does so without ever addressing the fact that police reports said both men were laughing as they ran from the burning house, which at that point held the two Petit children still alive and tied to thier beds, left to burn to death in the inferno started by the two men. The two laughing men. You see, with that laughter went up in smoke the notion that either man was being cajoled or forced by the other to commit these heinous murders. Neither man was apparently stressed enough by what they were doing to simply remain somber while they knew two human beings were about to die in a horrible fashion.
Komisarejvsky and his attorneys knew that this piece of testimony by the police at the scene, was out there and was very damning indeed to their client. It was for this reason it was chosen for inclusion in the "story" that Komisarejvsky dictated to Brian Mcdonald.

He figured by talking about Hayes and his maniacal shriek of laughter as he left the crime scene he would work to have us focus on Hayes- and reinvent what really happened.
Lest we forget; They both were laughing.

In fact, all of the "important" details that Komisarjevsky " shares" or rather feeds the author of this book, were procured from either testimony of attending law enforcement , or actual evidence from his and Hayes's arrest ie they were caught fleeing from the scene with a ton of incriminating evidence on both of them not to mention a lengthy confession komisarjevsky made to police. That confession incidentally, his attorneys have tried in every underhanded way possible to leak into the public domain, the latest attempt being a request to read parts of the komisarjevsky confession" at a recent hearing where Dr Petit and family were attending, as was the press.
The judge wisely put the kbosh on that and instead put a seal on the statement, undoubtedly smelling the defenses ulterior motive. ( ie to lead the jury pool via public sentiment to "know" komisarjevsky wasn't the one that killed the Petits. As the press are attending these hearings if this statement had been allowed to be read even in part, at the hearing, the press would then convey this information to its readership/viewership .

The bottom line is that every single " revelation" "'shared" in this book would be coming out in court in good time. komisarjevsky would not have control over putting his spin on these in court, his attorneys are certainly not going to allow him to testify.
There are other ulterior motives for this book at this time; Komisarevsky likely craves the attention that the book and even the interviewing process, brought him. He couldn't resist. In fact he likely had been upset that he'd faded so quicxkly into relative obscurity in a tiny prison cell 6 months after the crimes happened. Sociopaths are notoriously narcissistic and egocentric-
So much so that they will often sabotage themselves in criminal proceedings because they just cant help talking about themselves and being in the 'limelight"-- albeit for their twelve seconds of fame. (think Ted Bundy and Dr. MacDonald)

Sociopaths also like the notion of being "feared", ie really bad guys". It makes them feel they have power. Being feared and committing outrageous criminal acts are the only way that they can"stand out" in their paltry existences; they are typically failures at achieving anything positive or productive.

komisarjevsky uses this book to throw out many other ugly details regarding how the crimes unfolded-almost all designed in one way or another to subtly and not so subtly- manipulate the reader, sway public opinion and the potential jury pool, into believing that his accomplice, Steven Hayes, was the really "bad" one, the one who elevated the crimes to murder.

Komsarjevskt claims that Hayes insisted the Petit women be killed, he was the reason that the family is now dead. In truth, it was the other way around; Komisarjevsky was the one who spotted the women and chose them as his victims. He plotted these crimes and in doing so was fulfilling his own personal agenda; the exertion of Control and power over a house full of women-or in this case children including an 11 year old girl Michaela Petit.

Komisarejvsky made these crimes happen and Hayes, he was almost used as merely"brawn" In fact komisarjevsky later in the book admits to planning to kill hayes after leaving the house, supposedly because he flubbed up leaving fingerprints and other evidence. Again this is a socio's classic manipulation and deception at work; He thought to kill hayes undoubtedly a in order to silence him- after all Hayes could finger him and almost as importantly it was an issue of greed Hayes dead he would keep all of the 15,000.00 that they extorted from Jennifer hawk Petit who I am sure was trying to buy her family's safety-and was cruelly double crossed.

Fortunately, in the end, by being true to his nature, Komsrajevsky predictably trips himself up within " admissions"made to the author Brian McDonald. While his main motivation was clearly to shift blame to Hayes for the worst of the crimes, he just couldn't help himself it seems allowing his ego to take over and as a result look close and pieces of the truth have a way of seeping through the detritus.

Sep 25, 2009

Use GoodSearch to help the Petit Family Foundation

The above hyperlink brings you to "Goodsearch"- a search engine service that benefits various charities each time you you it! Anyone using the search is asked once to choose the charity that they would like their searches to donate money to-- this information is entered and each time you return to use Goodsearch, it will have the info saved and automatcally rack up money credits for that charity and it adds up!

Goodsearch was brought to my attention when I read that the Petit Family Foundation was one of the charities that used Goodsearch.
In fact just recently PFF was chosen as Goodsearch's "charity of the day".For those not familiar with The Petit Family Foundation, it is a local charity near and dear to our hearts here in Connecticut; it was started in the wake of the tragic murders of Jennifer Hawke Petit and her two daughters Hayley and Michaela, 19 and 11 years old respectively.

The crimes happened in Cheshire Ct in 2007 and the community, and indeed the state has been grieving these senseless murders ever since. The sole survivor, Dr William Petit, started the foundation shortly after the crimes as a way to carry the memory and spirit of his wife and daughters forward as well as doing positive things for others who are suffering from violent crime and chronic illness.

Last year PFF helped to fund a new shelter for battered women in New Britain Ct. This year they've donated a generous check to Ct Alive, an organization for victims of violent crime and their families. The foundation also awards educational scholarships to deserving youngsters, especially those pursuing science and medicine; Jennifer Petit was a pediatric nurse and Hayley Petit planned to pursue a medical career just like her dad, at Dartmouth, before her life was tragically cut short

So Please help honor this great charity by doing this very simple thing; Each time you use Goodsearch, after choosing PFF as your charity, the Petit foundation will receive a small amount of money, a bit more is credited when you use Goodsearch for online purchases via the "Goodsearch shopping" service choice. It quickly adds up! Search in good health!
GoodSearch - Web search, coupons, discounts & deals for charity!

Prudence Crandall Center and Domestic Violence Awareness Month - Overcoming Battered Lives

ICDP:Dispatch: Domestic Violence: a pre-existing condition

Outrageous and needs to be illegal.

What is Abuse? << Violence Against Women <<

Duncan, a defendant in Beaumont boy's slaying, can represent himself, judge rules | San Bernardino County | | Southern California News | News for Inland Southern California

Sep 18, 2009 | Suspect in Petit murder case seeks change of venue for trial

What a bunch of ____ (Fill in the expletive of your choice) I'm sorry but this reprobate
aka Connecticut inmate Joshua Komisarjevsky and his State financed mouthpiece, have the audacity to complain about incendiary remarks?!

This is a classic sociopath behavior- and while we expect as much from this "defendant", what excuse does his attorney have? While he is more or less obligated to take the case as a Ct public defender, but nowhere does it say that he should personalize the proceedings and assail the sole surviving victim with nonsense recriminations. It is a sleazy, sophmoric attempt to pull attention away from what his client did to three innocent lives.

And I am not carelessly bandying around the term Sociopath here - One of the main characteristics of the socio' is a complete lack of remorse and accountability for THE HARM that THEY cause OTHERS. And a lifetime pattern of harming others - violating others rights, along with a general predatorial and/or parasitic existence, is also part of the constellation of traits. Indeed, blaming their victims is commonplace as despicable as that is (ie 'I am in prison awaiting a trial where I might be found guilty and ordered to die not as a DIRECT result of murdering a mother and her two children--- and nearly killing thier father - I am in this predicament because....'.well ok first I was saying it was my accomplice-he made me do it all, and now I am condemning the one surviving victim, for supposedly making it impossible for me to get a fair trial, due to his becoming an activist for victims of violent crime.

I mean just imagine this, as much of a stretch as it is for those of us with a soul ;
You are caught red handed at the scene after killing a mans wife and two daughters, sexually assaulting the eleven year old and beating her dad in the head with a bat multiple times, (causing severe Traumatic brain injury and life- threatening blood loss) -Then--- after your night of battery and sexual assault , You help to direct your co-accomplice to the nearest gas station via cellphone directions so he can purchase gallons upon gallons of gasoline, using the Petit family's own gas cans, in order to burn down these same peoples house, killing the entire family who are tied up inside, hopefully destroying any physical evidence of your crimes rapes assaults robbery in the fire.. This shows clear awareness of the plan to burn down the house and kill the family.

Then... After you've helped your buddy find his way back to the house thanks to directions from you -( because after all you are the one that lived in this town your whole life and as such brought this crime to this particular home in the first place) At some point you both decide that your buddy will bring The man's wife to their bank when it openes where you will jointly defraud her of 10,000 . Undoubtedly you threatened the terrified woman that if she tries to escape or tip off the police- you will kill her children and/or husband . This is your guarantee. Those children are back at the house tied to their beds, under your guard-the youngest you've already sexually assaulted at least once . You intend to kill them all anyway but sadly the kidnapped mother of two girls thinks that if she only gives you what you want ( she in fact gives you 5,000 more than you asked for! ) that you ll both take the money and leave. This is what you tell her will happen.

Instead you reward her by watching your pal choke her to death and you both pour gasoline on her body and on her girls, who are still alive. One of you throws a match, and You run out of the house that you just set ablaze, with the 15,000 and a bunch of the Petits belongings in tow.
You proceed to drive off straight into a police roadblock just ouside the familys driveway.

Cut forward two years;
You've been sitting on your butt in a private cell eating three square meals a day, given medication for real or imagined anxiety conditions- reading crime novels and being guarded 24 7 -protected from the other inmates -all at the expense of those very same taxpayers whose homes you robbed continuously since you were old enough to jimmy a lock.
And rather than having even the littlest bit of remorse for taking the lives of a mother and her two children -- You are whining over "incendiary remarks" made by this very man who you admittedly assaulted and whose family you molested and helped slaughter.

And as if that' wasn't enough, you are also complaining loudly that the man whose family you raped and helped to murder called you "an animal" an animal! within a statement he made to the Connecticut legislature regarding the crimes against his family as it related to the death penalty. Considering what you have done to this man I would say that he has shown amazing restraint by merely calling you animals. You beat him in the head with a bat as he lay sleeping in his own house-that alone made you an animal! In fact, many of us felt that that statement wasn't appropriate-because even animals do not generally kill their own kind for sadistic pleasure, nor for rape or greed. You are much lower than animals and unlike animals you have no intrinsic value in this world. You have completely forfeited the right to be insulted by comments someone used to describe you.

It is also Bill Petits absolute right to express his feelings about what kind of punishment is appropriate in this "case" He is the sole surviving victim of said case and the only remaining witness to you and your pals' night of savagery.

I'll tell you what; Mr Komisarjevsky, Mr. Hayes and thier lawyers better wake up and smell the coffee: With the publicity that they are bringing upon themselves with these kinds of statements not to mention their complete and utter lack of rectitude, they are only ensuring that they'll never find a jury in the country --never mind the state that isn't predisposed to giving them the most severe sentence possible. Its one thing to ask for a change of venue, the proper way, with decorum and a modicum of professionalism, but this loutish grandstanding and antagonizing of the surviving victim is only making the public loathe both they and their clients even more than they already did, based upon the facts of the case.

Remember These men were caught at the scene red handed ---One of them was fleeing the flaming house wearing just- murdered Hayley Petit's school cap! And both men were toting the girls childhood piggy banks full of change. (Despicable)
There is no question of the Police having the right guys.

There is nothing left for either of their defenses but to try and shift as much blame for the murders on each other-- which predictably they have both been doing from the moment they were taken into custody. That is after smashing several police cars trying to escape the murder scene in the Petit's family car.

One would imagine that after being caught in such a despicable position, these two and their respective attorneys would be as quiet and inconspicuous as is humanely possible in the months leading up to their trials. Instead, Mr Ulmann has done nothing but antagonize, threaten and bait the surviving victim and used each and every hearing as a platform to vent and orate against both the state-for having the nerve to seek the death penalty against his client, and Dr Petit for basically refusing to be a good little compliant victim and just shut up and go away.

Well, I would be more upset if I didn't know with certainty that they were all digging their own proverbial graves-- literally and spiritually in turn.
More to follow--- Not done by a long stretch.

Sep 17, 2009

Half Sigma: Annie Le Review

Lab tech Raymond Clark arraigned on murder charges in slaying of Yale grad student Annie Le

Lab tech arrested in Yale killing arrives at court

Questions about the Murder of Annie Le at Yale

New information that the suspect in Yale graduate student Annie Le's murder- once belonged to an Asian club in High school has sparked suspicion that he may have had a life-long attraction to Asian women.

Another possible motive and one that I personally wondered about early on in the investigation is a scenario involving a dissagreement over the way the animals were being treated in the lab where both the victim and the suspect worked. Apparently, it is just now come out that there was in fact a very heated argument between these two on this very issue in the days leading up to the murder. I hate to say it but this was literally the first thing that came to my mind when I found out the type of lab that they both worked in and a few other clues that I'll talk about later. +

It looks like they will be arresting this guy as soon as the DNA evidence is confirmed as belonging to him. He is reportedly staying alone at a motel being watched round the clock by the FBI as more warrants were served at his apartment today and the police are still there collecting evidence.

Sep 15, 2009

Police serve warrants in Yale grad student slaying

It looks like an arrest is likley imminent in the murder of Yale Graduate student Annie Le; multiple warrants were served today at Raymond Clark lll's Middletown apartment, which he reportedly shares with his girlfriend/fiancee.

Police are being very careful about saying that Clark is only a "person of interest" at this time and that they are not arresting him, they are merely looking for evidence related to the murder of Miss Le.

Police serve warrants in Yale grad student slaying

Autopsy results withheld in Yale student's killing

Autopsy results withheld in Yale student's killing

Sep 13, 2009

Yale student Annie Le Body found

New Haven Police found missing Yale student Annie Le's body today, she was literally stuffed into a wall partition within the Yale University lab building where she was last seen.

Video cameras outside of the building had shown Ms Le entering the Lab but never exiting. This video evidence had produced an ominous cast upon what was technically a "missing person" case until today's terrible discovery.

Word is that Police have a suspect.

Hartford Site Searched For Missing Yale Student

This situation is looking pretty grim with the recent discovery of bloody clothing in the lab where this young girl was last seen. This article from The Cool Justice Report a local blog in theNew Haven area, has the most up to date information that I can find and its also got several links that are important to the case.
The Cool Justice Report: Hartford Site Searched For Missing Yale Student

Sep 10, 2009

Kevin Cosgrove - 911 victim and hero.

I was researching an article called "the falling man" recently and I came upon a tape of several 911 calls that were made by the victims trapped in the burning towers on Sept 11th 2001.

After a long deliberation, going back and forth on it, I decided to listen; It was very difficult, very painful and life-changing. At times I literally experienced the physical symptoms that the caller was enduring, due to the smoke and heat coming from the fires where they were trapped on the 103rd floor of the South tower twin tower offices.

Just as another caller expressed so aptly, At the end of Mr Cosgroves call, "I found myself not wanting to let go of him".And like many other people, hearing this call has forever changed me and my entire perspective of that terrible day.

The italicized text at the bottom of this post is the condolence message that I left at Kevin Cosgroves online 911 memorial site. I've supplied a link to his 911 call with corresponding video in this post's title header above. Kevin' desperate phone conversation with a 9-1-1 operator ultimately captured what were to be his last words ever spoken as the South tower collapsed, and as the only one of it;s kind it was used as evidence in the Moussaui trial, the only person ever prosecuted for the Sept 11th crimes..

After reading this post, if you wish to listen to the tape, it is available in the youtube link above. I must warn that no matter who you are, Listening to it will be an extremely emotional experience, and will  forever change you. At first, I  regretted having listened to it,  it hurt to hear this poor man's physical struggle with the encroaching smoke and depleted oxegen, let alone his emotional frustration at being stuck with noone being able to tell him that the nearest fireman were anywhere near him or if they were even attempting to get up that high. (I believe that the highest floor that fireman got to was to the 78th floor where a radio call was made by a firefightter asking for water or back up to fight a bad fire on that floor,)

 Like most other people was completely unprepared for the ending of Mr Cosgroves call.  I didnt realize that the tape captured the tower falling and was literally gripping the arms of my chair as I heard the ominous rumble of the building as it began floor by floor to collpase- it happened it was so raw, so real, and I couldnt bear to be so close to this man's pain. But I  came to realize that I should not regret for I came to see that it was for me, a necessary pain a pain that ultimately transformed 911 from an awful tragic event to something altogether more real, more personal, more human and more true. And we owe the victims at the very least truth by embracing the complete and unvarnished reality of thier experience.

The pain that many of us feel upon hearing these callers speak about those horrific conditions in the towers, about their fear over their likely, imminent deaths, the distress in having to leave their families and loved ones, all of this made us feel as if we knew them. By sharing in the most intimate last moments of their lives, this has allowed us to honor their experience without the whitewash effect of news camera shots of a burning buildings thousands of feet away in the air.

Even the sudden and awful collapse of the towers into veritable dust bowl like much that happened that day was somehow surreal- Its not that we couldn't and didn't consider the horror of what was likely going on way up there where our eyes could not see, it just wasn't in our face, so to speak, and we gratefully took advantage of that kind bit of distance, because really, the horror might have been too much for us to bear.

The voices of the people on these tapes however will be with us forever The people themselves will thus reside in us. We carry them now.
Many people have asked why on earth I listened and why I was encouraging others to listen when it was so sad and so awful. I try to explain that sometimes circumstance presents an opportunity where pain can serve as an engine for greater understanding and ultimately, growth, both individually and then as a community and society. We dont often get a chance to understand the suffering involved by victims of violent crime0-and that is what 911 was--a violent crime of huge proportion, committed against thousands of people.

These tapes and the nature of the Internet itself, have opened up a door for us. I do not suggest listening as voyeurs, but as caring witnesses . We can use the powerful emotions that are triggered in us- the empathy, the anger and the pain -to bring us to a new level of awareness; about crime, tragedy, about justice, Lifeand death. We can then use this awareness wisely and do only positive things with it. These good things shall become the legacy of those who perished that day-victims and heroes all.
So many people related that problems in their lives that had seemed so important prior to listening to the tape of Kevins desperate last minutes on earthl, immediately became nothing at all And this experience was not a rare thing- many many cited this experience as a turning point in their lives, marked by the experience of listening to these tapes. Indeed they expressed gratitude to Mr Cosgrove and his family- for giving them an opportunity to rethink the value of their lives.

Every day, every moment all of our loved ones must be appreciated, for we never know how much time we have left. As daunting as it is This is a beautiful legacy to leave, albeit we must leap through the fire, so to speak, to get to it.

Note: The link to the 911 tape itself is at the title header of this post - below is a copy of my entry on Kevins memorial page)
Leave a memorial comment yourself for I am certain that the family reads them and I am hopeful that reading them as they crop up every other day at least, provides solace to them knowing that thier beloved has had such a positive, albeit bittersweet- impact on so many.
Rest in Peace Kevin.
The entry in italics was taken from he 911 memorial page found via the link below;

Dear Mr Cosgrove and loved ones,

I heard the tape of Kevin's 9-1-1 call for the first time yesterday while researching the "falling man" article in Esquire magazine. I cried much of the night, and my heart literally felt ripped open. I made myself listen to it again today, hoping that the shock had worn off just a bit and wanting to feel somehow closer to this man who was so courageous and heroic in his love for his family and his will to survive
for them.

At first, I felt like a voyeur and wondered whether this tape and others like it should be made available for the public to hear, was it not just re-traumatizing everyone I wondered?

But I realized as the day passed that I, and all of us need to hear these calls and voices of those who suffered and perished on that day, because there is really no other way to fully understand the unvarnished reality of the suffering and loss that this terroristic act wrought upon so many decent human beings.

Indeed, because of this tape, September 11th is now more real to me today almost 7 years after the crimes, than it was in the weeks and months following the actual tragedy. At the time,I just couldn't allow myself to listen to to many of the awful details of sept 11 and even for a few years afterward. I had recently been the victim of a violent crime and indeed I was still involved in the court process for that case. So when Sept 11 brought its horror and violence to myself and the world I just had to numb myself a bit for otherwise I felt I would surely crumble from the sheer magnitude of the pain and suffering involved in the tragedy. I was too sensitive normally and at that point I was in the eye of the PTSD storm from the crimes wrought against me only months earlier.
So for the first time perhaps ever in my life I put a shell around my heart and wouldn't allow myself to listen or read too much about the horror of this happening.
Perhaps only now, 8 years later, was I truly ready.
I want to say that I too feel that I now know this man who before listening to this tape-was a stranger. He now dwells in my heart and in my soul . His determination, his strength, his humor, his fear his humanness really, are now forever a part of me.

I have prayed earnestly to God that he holds Kevin in his peaceful and loving embrace forever and that the entire Cosgrove family be given peace and comfort while holding onto the memory of this by all acounts, devoted humorous loving-and now we know- courageous man.
*** Posted by Laurel O'keefe ***

Posttraumatic Growth: A New Perspective on Psychotraumatology

In light of the upcoming anniversery of Sept 11, this article becomes even more meaningful.
Here is a quote from the tezt;

" These changes include improved relationships, new possibilities for one's life, a greater appreciation for life, a greater sense of personal strength and spiritual development. There appears to be a basic paradox apprehended by trauma survivors who report these aspects of posttraumatic growth: Their losses have produced valuable gains. We also find that other paradoxes are involved. For example: "I am more vulnerable, yet stronger." Individuals who experience traumatic life events tend to report--not surprisingly--an increased sense of vulnerability, congruent with the experience of suffering in ways they may not have been able to control or prevent

However, these same people also may report an increased sense of their own capacities to survive and prevail (Calhoun and Tedeschi, 1999). Another experience often reported by trauma survivors is a need to talk about the traumatic events, which sets into motion tests of interpersonal relationships--some pass, others fail. They also may find themselves becoming more comfortable with intimacy and having a greater sense of compassion for others who experience life difficulties.

Individuals who face trauma may be more likely to become cognitively engaged with fundamental existential questions about death and the purpose of life. A commonly reported change is for the individual to value the smaller things in life more and also to consider important changes in the religious, spiritual and existential components of philosophies of life". "

Sep 5, 2009

An issue of class?

Attorney Ulmanns attempt to inject racism and classism into the fray in response to the prosecution's request for one, or two simultaneous trials for the two men accused of killing the Petit family- is nothing but a cheap and ugly ploy. Its also ironic: Before continuing along this vein Mr Ulmann would do well to consider that if god forbid a violent crime should befall him or his family, according to his absurd conclusions, this should immediately render all legal considerations asked for or granted him as a victim, accordingly suspect-- due to his tax bracket and education level.
This kind of tactic, used by Ulmann in previous hearings as well, is a perfect illustration of the sleazy provocateur lawyering that gives defense attorneys such a bad name. Indeed, many of today's more intelligent and savvy attorneys have distanced themselves from this type of baiting and victim bashing, opting for a more sensitive approach towards their clients victim and their families. In the end, Ulmanns willy-nilly contraryism betrays a desperation, a grasping at straws for anything that might deflect attention from his clients culpability for the assault and murder of three human beings, even when it means going after the sole survivor of his client's carnage.

In many Eastern religions, ones behavior and moral integrity displayed within ones chosen career path matters very much. If someone directly or indirectly hurts others or causes harm within the performance of their 'jobs" this creates very bad karma, which then sits with that person forever .The old standard lawyer-mentality that anything goes in court because Its my job --is nothing but a self- serving lie used to rationalize a lot of very ugly behavior --It also serves to help save face with friends and neighbors when they ask ' how could you defend such a horrible criminal?!' If you're as good at deceiving yourself as you are others you might use it to assuage whatever remains of your own consciences. In Mr Ullmanns case, I daresay that ship has sailed.

Kudos to Dr Petit and the Hawke and Petit families for taking the high road and not allowing these facile and ugly manipulations to deter them from their ultimate pursuit of justice for Jennifer, Hayley Micheala-and Bill himself. Lets never forget that this is what it's all about.

Sep 3, 2009

Prosecutors seek 1 trial for two Petit family murderers

The judge did not rule on this yet so lets hope that he does the right thing for The Petit and Hawke families.

Prosecutors seek 1 trial for Conn. slay suspects --

The judge did not rule on this yet so lets hope that he does the right thing for The Petit and Hawke families.

Sep 2, 2009

Why Jaycee Lee Dugard never tried to escape

The above linked  article is about Jaycee Lee Dugards strange yet classic case of Stockhom Syndrome,  the condition that likely led her to become complacent and even somewhat attached to her captor for over 17 years.   Variations of this syndrome are commonplace with battered women and others in controlling and destructive relationships. It is often a big part of what keeps a person bound to thier abuser...much to the mystification of others.

As the various linked articles explain, Stockolm syndrome is a really nothing more than a very base survival mechanism-- and it is one with which I am personally familiar.  As such, I believe that I understand it in a way that few others can viscerally as opposed to simply intellectually.

My hope here is that by encouraging awareness about this pervasive syndrome, more people will recognize the hallnarks of these kinds of "relationships" and  thus be in a better position to help a person being victimized, be it a battered woman, someone in a controlling domineering relationship, an abused child or teen or even someone who has been abducted, as this young woman was.  As is often the case with child abductees, Jaycee Lee was exposed to people from the outside world on various occasions throughout her imprisonment - yet she did not directly solicit help nor divulge her real identitiy. There is no doubt in my mind that through the interactions she did have someones gut instinct told them that something was amiss, but they likely couldnt put thier finger on exactly what  was wrong.

Today My prayers and  thoughts are with this young woman and her family...May each day bring her more healing and comfort and closer to  discovering who Jaycee Lee Dugard truly  is.