Thursday, April 24, 2008

This Ain't Mr. Roger's Neighbourhood Baby!

Evenin' Everyone!

Last week I was in Montreal. On Wednesday night I returned home to some interesting news. Almost immediately, I thought 'blog!'. But in the next moment, I realized that talking about something like this publicly may not be such a good idea.

If you know me, you know that blogging, aside from being a permenant record of the 'stories' I want to pass along to the boys, is like therapy for me ... and I'm really feeling the need for a session on this one! I've been tossing it around in my brain for the past week. To the point that now only three out of the four voices in my head agree that I'm sane!

There's so much I want to say. And so much more I know I can't say. What does end up here isn't meant to point fingers or cast blame, or 'reveal' anyone's identities who may not necessarily want to be discussed in a public forum. What this is, is simply MY thoughts and feelings on a particular public event that occurred last winter - after coming to realize I had a 'six degrees of separation' relationship to it.

But first ... I have to backtrack a bit. Sorry. Crucial part of the 'story' ;-)

When my ex returned from Washington a couple of years ago, he was limited in his apartment choices in our area. He chose a four unit building, not far away. It had it's good and bad points, as most of our homes/living arrangements do. Once he was 'settled', the boys started going there every second weekend.

Like any multi-unit building, it had it's 'characters' in both tenants and visitors. My kids included lol. I'm sure the others always knew when they were visiting :-) Not only were they there every two weeks, but there were ALWAYS pit stops for something during that two week period in between. With so many visits, I ran into many people in that building's parking lot. And as with most people in parking lots, I would have cast them nothing more than a passing glance and perhaps a 'hi' if it was someone I perceived as 'OK'.

My ex has since moved and I'll be honest in saying I wouldn't recognize 9.9/10 of the people from his previous building if I was standing behind them in the grocery, fast food, movie etc. lineup, Couldn't tell you if one of them, or their visitors I'd run into, served me my coffee every day. On one hand, I guess I could look at that as my being insensitive and indifferent to other people. On the other, as a single mom/woman in this 'trust nobody' world, it could be more a form of self preservation. Maybe a bit of both.

Now I have to veer off even further for a minute, but please indulge me, I will be connecting these dots very soon ;-)

Last winter there were a couple of 'violent crimes' that stood out for me amongst the 'everyday' violence that we've all grown accustomed to. One because it was a teens against another teen incident. Which just scares the crap out of me! I know I have an influence over my own boys actions, but I have no say whatsoever in how all the other kids they go to school with are raised. Sigh. I don't like being part of the generation who sends them to school and prays they come home :-( But that's a whole other post.

The other story caught my attention because I thought I might have known a relative of the victim, since she shared the same last name as a former employer. Turned out it wasn't anyone I 'knew'. I was thankful for that, and was silently happy for my former employer that she wasn't burying a family member, but I still felt bad for this poor girl who was raped, tortured, and in the end, murdered and stuffed away.

A man and woman were arrested. Other than what I read in the two (most detailed) archived articles I found last night, I have no idea where the incident currently stands. No idea if both were actually involved. If both are even in jail or back out living alongside the rest of us.

I didn't know it at the time, but apparently I've looked into the eyes of the victim's accused killer(s).

That's what I found out when I got home last Wednesday.

Now we're all caught up to today.

Here's the kicker. I couldn't tell you what he looks like, because I really don't know. Never took the time to really 'look' at him. Indifference ... self-preservation ... I'm really not going to examine it too closely. Whatever it is, if I'm not drawing the attention of a potential psycho, it's working!

So how does my web entangle with that of an accused murderer? One of the two who was arrested apparently has a relative in that same apartment building my ex was living in for over a year. Both people arrested had visited the relative in this building on a regular basis.

The minute I was told of the connection between the ex's former accommodations and this accused couple, my first thought was 'OMIGOD THE KIDS!!!!'. How many times had these people been at the apt the same times the kids were. That I was.

Now I should say that it was reported there was some type of 'connection' between the accused and the victim, so I don't think this person, if they did it, decided to just randomly kill someone one evening. And the murder did NOT occur in 'my area'. However, looking at it from the single woman's perspective, it's hard not to be lying in bed, staring at the ceiling a couple of nights later and thinking ... shit ... did these people know how many nights I'd left there, going home to an empty house ... had they been there in the building, in their car, when I left? Was their crime spur of the moment? Heat of passion? Planned? Had they ever discussed picking some unsuspecting woman to 'practice' on? And then back to ... shit ... did these people know how many nights I'd left there, going home to an empty house ...

Sigh. Once again, over-analyzing the bad guy. Damn my overactive imagination ... and damn A&E and their crime shows! ;-) The whole situation had absolutely nothing to do with me, my kids or my ex, but it still creeps me out to know that I, and even scarier, my children, were most likely in the same building ... at the same time, as a couple now accused of raping, torturing, and finally killing a 20yr old woman. Yeah ... Creeps me out.

My ex called tonight and we discussed it for a bit.

I finally had to ask.

I just sort of blurted it out. "Can you honestly tell me that I would have run into him in the parking lot ... did I look into his face". His answer was simple - and chilling. "Yep".

Apparently I've looked into an accused killers eyes. On more than one occasion. Hell, I might have even smiled. Given the 'hi'.

But the scary part is ... I couldn't tell you what he looks like.

Sigh. Nope, this ain't Mr Roger's Neighbourhood Baby! Maybe I should start thinking about moving INTO the city ...

Have a safe night all! And once again, if I happen not to return to my Korner within a few weeks, would someone please send Grissom ;-)



Sue said...

Damn that's creepy! I tend to want to observe everything, for the sole purpose of knowing what's going on around me. I soak up details, descriptions, observations. I gage people's demeanor and attitude in my presence. But it's driven by the same 'self-preservation' fear I feel you carry.

I've been a single mom too. It's a scary world out there.

Kim's Korner said...

Hi Sue! Welcome to the Blog and thanks for the comment :-)

Although I don't want to think of myself as 'paranoid', I still feel very creeped out knowing what I know now about this situation.

There was alot more that I didn't/couldn't put in this post. Although I wanted to discuss this, it was one of those times where I felt I had to be very careful WHAT I said, and HOW I said it.

And you're absolutely right ... being aware of our surroundings is one thing we can do to keep ourselves 'safer' in this sometimes scary world of ours!


Vivianne's Vista said...

That is eery! I have been a single mom for a few years now as well and try to keep a check on my instincts whenever I see people around. But, like you I don't really pay close enough attention most of the time. How frightening it must have been for you!

Kim said...

That's very scary.