This story is personal. Jaycee Lee Dugard is the daughter of a high school classmate of mine. Terry (Dugard) Probyn has lived the last 18 years of her life with a void that none of us can understand unless we have experienced the same thing. I can’t even imagine what it would be like to have your child kidnapped and vanish without a trace, then have to go on living your life with no closure, no peace in your heart, no hugs from your baby, and no explanation who, what, where, why or how from anyone.
Whenever I read a story about random acts of kindness; my heart warms just a little bit. When I heard the story of Michael Steven Ratley putting himself at risk to pull his 2 week old son and wife out of their burning mobile home; I felt my heart fluttering. There are still good people in the world. Or are there?
Michael Ratley spoke to the media and said that losing everything physical in his life meant nothing since he still had Effie and Aiden, his wife and son. He appeared to be a selfless man who endured a great tragedy and was going to brush it off and move on. Appearances can be deceiving.
SENTENCE OF LIFE WITHOUT PAROLE FOR LETALVIS COBBINS
by Duncan Mansfield, The Associated Press
The first of four defendants to be tried in the carjacking, rape and murder of a young Tennessee couple was sentenced to life in prison without parole Wednesday by the same jury that convicted him of murder.
Letalvis Cobbins, 26, had faced the possibility of two death sentences for conviction of first-degree murder and felony. He took a deep breath and then sat down after the jury announced its decision, following less than three hours of deliberation.
The jury convicted Cobbins of Lebanon, Ky., on Tuesday in the January 2007 attack on 21-year-old Channon Christian and her 23-year-old boyfriend Christopher Newsom, both of Knoxville.
MAN WHO ALLEGEDLY BIT OUT SON’S EYE IS DECLARED MENTALLY INCOMPETENT
by Steve E. Swenson, The Bakersfield Californian
Angelo Mendoza Sr., accused of biting out his son’s eye, is not competent to stand trial, a judge ruled Tuesday.
That means the 34-year-old defendant will likely go to a state hospital until he becomes competent or he has further hearings on whether he can be kept in custody.
He is charged with mayhem and torture in an April 28 attack on his 4-year-old son, Angelo Mendoza Jr. The boy was blinded in both eyes, but regained sight in his right eye within a few weeks. He has been staying in a foster home, although his mother and two of the senior Mendoza’s brothers are seeking custody. He is reportedly doing well.
CHRISTINE, NEWSOME FAMILIES GET GUILTY VERDICT, AWAIT COBBIN’S SENTENCING
by Mike McCarthy, WVLT Television
The families of Channon Christian, 21, and Christopher Newsom, 23, have waited more than two-and-a-half years for Tuesday — the day they got to hear the jury say Letalvis Cobbins is guilty of crimes against the young couple.
Both families say the wait has been long, but it was worth it.
Gary Christian, Channon’s Christian’s father, pumped his fist, partly fulfilling the promise he made to fight for his daughter years ago.
Gary Christian says, “I’m getting there slowly but surely, honey.”
“One down, three to go,” Deena Christian, Channon’s mother, says.
I’m not sure why there are a handful of people out there who have such an intense hatred of cats that the feel that torturing and killing these sensitive, gentle creatures is an OK thing to do. I tend to blame the cats for this. They are very discriminating about the type of people they show their affection to, and obviously they’re going to express nothing but disdain to those people who have such a serious defect in their character. Cat killers must find that quite antagonizing.
I imagine 36-year-old self employed graphic artist Sean Lynde probably had a resentment against cats well before he moved into his his girlfriend’s Upper West Side apartment on October 1st, 2008. On his Web site, Lynde doesn’t come off as a crazed cat killer, but The Daily News wrote that he made his preference for dogs perfectly clear:
I’ve had some requests for the transcripts and documents that have been released in this case, so I’ve decided to post everything I managed to find in one place. Some of the things you will find here are links to documents, others are audio archives.
FYI, the case went to the jury Saturday evening in the trial of the State of Tennessee vs Letalvis Cobbins. I personally don’t see this one as a long deliberation. In fact, I’ll be surprised if we goes past today without a verdict.
Grand Jury Presentment (WARNING: graphic details of the murders)
JANUARY 31st, 2007 – INTERROGATION OF VANESSA COLEMAN
This is 21-year-old Kenneth Lopez.
As of the 8th of March, 2009, Kenneth Lopez and Danielle McCleary had been dating for about 3 months. They got along famously, like a matched set of knives, or possibly like two jars of pickle relish. Either way, they worked really, really well together and will probably be featured in some kind of parenting documentary at some point.
The couple had recently moved to Tampa, Florida from Illinois, taking up residence in room 108 at the Homestead Studio Suites hotel.
Living and travelling with Kenneth Lopez and Danielle McCleary were Danielle’s two children: a 3-year-old boy and 2-year-old Gabrielle Randel.
For some reason, Gabrielle cried a bit on the night of the 7th of March, 2009. Why, we don’t know.