Sunday, April 19, 2009

Murder / Suicide in Maryland - 5 Dead

CNN reports on the tragic story that took place outside Baltimore yesterday in which a dad killed his family and himself.

A Maryland man believed to have shot and stabbed his wife and three young children to death before killing himself with a shotgun was having money problems and left a note saying he suffered from "psychological issues," authorities said.

Christopher Wood, 34, may have slashed at least some of his family members in the killings and used a small-caliber handgun on others, Frederick County Sheriff Charles Jenkins said.

He was found dead of an apparently self-inflicted shotgun wound at the foot of the bed where the bodies of his wife and 2-year-old daughter lay, the sheriff said.

Wood's sons were 5 and 4 years old, authorities said. His wife, Francie Billotti Wood, was 33.

Do you think this story is a little different from this one and this one? Is the fact that he also used a knife significant? In some of the other stories I've suggested that the gun availability might have played a part. In this case, it looks like the gun apologists are right when they point out that a man determined to kill can easily use another weapon, a knife in this case. What do you think?

Do you think gun availability plays a part in some percentage of cases? Of all the murders we read about and all the suicides, and remember for every one that makes the news there are another 100 or so that don't, what percentage do you think happen quickly enough and spontaneously enough that the easy access to guns plays a part? Is it a significant percentage (you can define "significant")?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.


  1. Anyone that could even contemplate killing his own children is obviously extremely deranged. What tool they actually use is insignificant

  2. MikeB,

    Still think that a comparison to cars is invalid?

    Both from FoxNews:

    >Police filed intoxication manslaughter charges Sunday against a driver who lost control of his car while using a cell phone, plunging the vehicle into a rain-filled ditch and killing five children inside.

    Chanton Jenkins, 32, was in police custody facing four counts of intoxication manslaughter, one charge for each of the children found dead so far, said Houston police spokesman Kese Smith. Police said a relative told them Jenkins was the father of three of the victims.

    Jenkins failed a field sobriety test following Saturday's crash, which occurred after heavy rain turned the ditch into a torrent. The results of a blood alcohol test were pending,
    Hey, I have an idea. Let's make it illegal to be drunk in public. Let's make it even more illegaler to drive drunk.

    What is the percentage of people that go from lawful car owner to criminal killing people?
    Is it larger then that percentage of gun owners? You bet it is.

    PLUMERVILLE, Ark. — Three children died early Sunday morning when the car they were in drove straight into a man-made lake, authorities said.

    Arkansas State Police investigators and sheriff's deputies questioned the children's mother about what happened just after 3:30 a.m., when she apparently drove down an old state highway that dead-ends into the gunmetal blue waters of Brewer Lake.

    Conway County Sheriff Mike Smith declined to immediately identify the children, ages 2, 7 and 8, or their 26-year-old mother.

    Smith declined to offer any specifics about the drownings, saying deputies wanted to verify the mother's account of what happened. The Morrilton woman had not been arrested or charged as of Sunday afternoon, the sheriff said.
    Murder -Suicide? Probably, will be interesting to get the details later.

    So, where are you calls for strict car control, one drive a month laws...background checks prior to getting a license, mental health checks prior to every renewal?

    Now, question yourself why this doesn't get the play in the Leftstream media that firearm related deaths do? Is it possible there is a bias?

  3. Like a later post of yours addressing The Wire's influence on drug dealers and vise versa...

    The media makes these guys stars and even provides a game plan.

    American TV, both entertainment and news feeds violent behavior into our living rooms daily... and has been for generations now.

  4. Thanks Jim D. for the comment.

    Yes, Bob, I still think the comparison to cars is invalid. You're into numbers right Bob? How about this? Most people who own guns don't carry or even practice with them regularly. Most keep them in the closet or in a drawer, except for those who keep them safely locked away under key, separated from the bullets. Most don't use their guns daily, that's the point.

    Most car owners do. People who own cars use them for everything they do, work, school, shopping, recreation, and these activities take place daily.

    So, your continually comparing the car deaths to the gun deaths is extremely misleading, so knock it off, will ya?

    Besides, and more importantly, no one is talking about banning cars as a solution. Now, before you go scouring the internet for some fringe lunatic group that is promoting it, don't bother please. No one is seriously suggesting that. But for guns, there certainly are serious people who feel that total or partial bans would help. That's the main difference between cars and guns and it makes all comparisons nonsensical.

  5. If Bob showed you only data on vehicular manslaughter and vehicular homicide would that change things Mike?

    Would you suddenly start calling for strict "car control?" After all, it is EXACTLY the same as what you do regarding guns. Because SOME people misuse a tool (criminally) to kill and injure people the rights of everyone must be curtailed. That's what you and your ilk advocate.

    The question is, will you apply the same "logic" to cars. (keeping in mind there's no "right to own a car" in the BOR)

    I don't use my car everyday to commit vehicular manslaughter or vehicular homicide, nor do millions of other Americans, but perhaps a "significant" number of people DO, so by your standards we need "common-sense car control"