It was around 1:40AM on the 28th of November, 2001, when firefighters in Chester, South Carolina, were alerted to a fire in a home on Slick Rock Road. When they arrived on the scene, they initially, believed that the home was empty. However, after extinguishing the flames, they found the bodies of 66-year-old Joe Pittman and his wife, 62-year-old Joy, in their bed on the second floor.
There were missed opportunities and procedural failings by police and the army when 24-year-old Alice Ruggles contacted them for help and for protection while being the victim of a stalking campaign. The inactivity of those entrusted to care for the community led to the brutal and preventable murder of a young woman.
The two most common early signs of domestic violence are jealousy and controlling behavior. It’s easy for people to say: “why don’t they just leave?” but statistics show that up to 75% of abused women who are murdered are murdered after they leave their partners. Too often, many women do try to leave toxic an abusive situations and tragically, they pay with their lives.
Redlands is a tranquil city in San Bernardino County, California. It’s known for its gracious Victorian homes, the Lincoln Shrine, acres of orange groves and low crime rate. While many surrounding cities are rife with gang violence and random street violence, residents of this bucolic city like to think that they inhabit an oasis. But throughout the 1990s, a wave of youth violence rocked the city and shattered their idyll. The violence culminated with the mysterious disappearance of a 14-year-old boy.
One thing you’ll notice about almost all mass shootings is that the perpetrator is male. Female mass shooters are rare. Female mass shooters that target their place of employment are even rarer. But in Goleta, California, in 2006, an ex-postal worker was an exception to the rule. It was the nation’s deadliest workplace shooting perpetrated by a woman and the nation’s bloodiest shooting at a postal installation in almost 20 years.
In 2014, the small town of Colchster was rocked by two extremely brutal murders and the investigation to catch the killer was one of the biggest carried out by Essex Police. The town was held on edge as the spectre of a serial killer loomed over. Sales of stab proof vests rocketed while people refused to go anywhere alone out of fear they would become the next target.
In 2012, much of America was celebrating the re-election of the nation’s first African American president but just three weeks later in Jacksonville, Florida, the murder of an unarmed African American teenager was a bloody reminder of just how far we still have to go in the battle against racism.
The case of Shawna Forde is a bizarre and tragic tale which highlights the dangers of militia groups. She first began making headlines in 2009, when she claimed to have been targeted for a series of violent incidents in Everett, Washington. According to Forde, she was the victim of Mexican drug cartel retribution for her Minutemen activism. However, in 2012, Forde committed a crime under the guise of the minutemen which completely overshadowed any of their earlier actions.
As human beings, we all have ambitions and goals. For a number of people all across the world, their life’s ambition is quite simply to have a large family. In a perfect world, babies are born into hard-working families that do their best to provide for them a loving home and a stable environment. But what about those that are seen as nothing more than a source of income?
Lying south of Bega in New South Wales, Australia, is the tiny hamlet of Kalaru. In 1997, it only had around 400 residents, living among the green pastures of prime south-coast dairy country. The tranquil and rural lifestyle provides locals with a sense of security, but in 1997, this sense of security was completely shattered when two local teenagers vanished.