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Tuesday, June 24, 2008

[WI] House where Deputy Peterson shot his ex & 5 of her friends is torn down

...OFFICIALS HAVE RELEASED DOCUMENTS REPLETE WITH REDACTIONS, MONTHS AFTER THE FACT, AND ASKED US TO TRUST THAT NOTHING INCRIMINATING HAS BEEN REMOVED... THE QUESTIONS THAT HAVE BEEN RAISED AND REMAIN UNANSWERED ARE OF GREAT PUBLIC INTEREST. HOW ELSE CAN OUR LAW-ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE FOR THE ACTIONS TAKEN BEFORE, DURING AND AFTER THE CRANDON TRAGEDY?...
Fountain of Youth Memorial Fund - 715-478-2322.

Previous entries:
WISCONSIN HOUSE WHERE 6 WERE KILLED DEMOLISHED
Minneapolis Star Tribune, MN
By ROBERT IMRIE, Associated Press
June 21, 2008
Paul Murray watched from across the street Saturday as the home where his teenage daughter and five friends were fatally gunned down by a jealous off-duty deputy sheriff was flattened into broken boards, splinters and dust... About 100 people, including most parents of the slain youth, stood on nearby streets watching, the morning silence broken only by the roar of the equipment engines and cracking of splintering wood. A musty smell hung in the air... The home, kitty corner to the town's post office, was a constant reminder of the Oct. 7 morning when Tyler Peterson went to the house where Jordanne Murray lived and accused her of dating someone else. Murray, 18, demanded Peterson leave, and he did — only to return with an AR-15 assault rifle he was issued as a member of the Forest County Sheriff's SWAT team. Peterson, 20, broke down the door and opened fire on the young people attending Murray's party, methodically gunning them down. He killed Murray; Bradley Schultz, 20; Lindsey Stahl, 14; Aaron Smith, 20; Lianna Thomas, 18; and Katrina McCorkle, 18. Charlie Neitzel, 21, shot three times during the rampage, played dead and lived. He was not at the razing Saturday. Peterson, also a part-time Crandon police officer, ran out of the home, shot at an arriving police squad car and then fled in his pickup truck. Hours later, Peterson shot himself three times in the head near a friend's home after police efforts to get him to surrender failed. A committee later raised $71,000 to buy the property from Paul Murray... The Fountain of Youth Memorial Fund, which bought the property, intends to replace the home with a six-sided gazebo — with each wall dedicated to one of the victims — and a water fountain in the middle... [Full article here]
FAMILIES OF CRANDON SHOOTING VICTIMS FIND HEALING AS 'THE HOUSE' IS DEMOLISHED
Green Bay Press Gazette, WI
By Kate McGinty
June 22, 2008
...The victims' families spearheaded eight months of fundraising to buy the house from [Jordanne] Murray's father for $71,000. Three contractors, all friends and family of Schultz, volunteered, and a local waste management company agreed to bury the pieces in an out-of-state dump... The demolition lifted an emotional weight for parents, who said they can now focus on creating a memorial in its place. "I felt relief. I felt sadness, because that's the last place our kids were (but) it's just a relief to finally see this day," said Lee Smith, Aaron's mother. [Full article here]
SECRECY LEAVES QUESTIONS ABOUT CRANDON SHOOTING UNANSWERED
Green Bay Press Gazette, WI
By Roger Schneider
June 22, 2008
..1. Was there anything in Peterson's past to indicate he was capable of such a horrendous act? 2. Should someone so young be a police officer? 3. Was the law enforcement response proper leading up to Peterson shooting himself after he took six lives and wounded another? 4. Is it possible for someone to shoot himself in the head three times after suffering a gunshot from a SWAT sniper? The investigating agencies have said repeatedly the answer to the first question is no; the second and fourth, yes; and the third, absolutely yes. But it's fair to say that reporters covering this tragedy have been frustrated by the response to requests for open records. Real answers are hard to determine based on what has been made public. Officials have released documents replete with redactions, months after the fact, and asked us to trust that nothing incriminating has been removed. Even more troubling, requests for Peterson's autopsy report, which might shed light on how he shot himself three times in the head, have been denied. The state Justice Department says it no longer has custody of the report. A staff member several months ago sent it to Forest County District Attorney Leon Stenz, who won't allow its release... "Weighing against disclosure would be the public interest in maintaining the dignity and privacy of the victims and their families and the need to prevent further suffering by them," Stenz wrote... No one can argue that the families haven't suffered greatly. Nevertheless, the questions that have been raised and remain unanswered are of great public interest. How else can our law-enforcement agencies be held accountable for the actions taken before, during and after the Crandon tragedy? As for the autopsy summaries, they are merely interpretations of official documents and weren't prepared by scientific experts. And as to whether this all is even news anymore, another anonymous comment that followed that posting should weigh heavily on those in authority. "It's news to the people who are affected by the case. I would want to know every single detail I could." [Full article here]

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