Jovan Belcher was a murderer. He shot and killed his girlfriend and mother of his child, Kassandra Perkins. In the days since the murder, and Belcher’s subsequent suicide, there has been a throbbing hum of stupid regarding the whys and wherefores of domestic violence, guns and the NFL. I have some knowledge of the subject. One of the child abuse/neglect allegations my agency investigates is Risk due to ongoing domestic violence in the home.
First, for those who are looking for simple answers as to why this happened, stop.
There are no simple answers. A combination of mental illness, and easy access to guns? Maybe. A man hell bent on controlling his woman even if it meant ending her life? Perhaps. Early onset of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) and alcohol abuse? Could be.
You see all of these factors could have made a man a murderer, but not all will be discussed. Media rarely discusses domestic violence. I want to discuss the people hell bent on controlling women. These are the guys we commonly call batterers, domestic abusers etc. And yes I am using the pejorative ’guys’ because almost all batterers are men. In 20 years I’ve investigated maybe 15 women who battered their husbands in front of the kids. Out of around 3000 or so reports.
What Belcher did was domestic violence taken to its ultimate end. I had a twitter fight on Saturday with someone trying to say it wasn’t DV. By definition, killing your lover is domestic violence. Period. We will never know if Belcher battered Kassandra before Saturday, it just doesn’t matter. What matters is that a man who was mad at his girlfriend, murdered her when he couldn’t keep her in her place.
That’s what domestic violence is. Domestic abusers want to keep their women in their place. They do so with physical assaults, sexual assaults, finances, using the children as pawns. Much like rape is about power and control, so too is domestic violence.
A short disclaimer, when I first started my job and thought I knew it all, my default positions were either “what did she do?” or “why won’t she leave?’ I’ve learned a lot about the cycle of abuse and I know longer look at things that way.
Women don’t have to “do” anything to get battered. Batterers will find any excuse. The “she had it coming” mentality that a shocking number of people have is truly unfathomable to me. Nobody has it coming. Nobody.
So many women who are victims of abuse can’t leave the abuser because of finances, threats that things will be worse, or threats made to the children. Many women I have interviewed really love their partner, think he will get better, think that “this will be the last time”.
Some women do walk away, but even then they need support and counsel to help them get their lives back together, and to help them continue to make good choices.
Jovan Belcher was a murderer. I have no idea what the NFL is going to do regarding Belcher. I do hope the league and the Chiefs put Belcher’s remaining contract $ in a trust for his daughter.
Whatever is done by the league, here’s what we can do as a society. We can stop looking down on women as inferior. We can stop blaming and slut shaming women for choices they make. We can make sure our daughters are treated respectfully.
Most of all when a man murders his girlfriend, we can stop pretending it was something other than domestic violence.
This death bothers me so much more than many others…. I just cannot imagine how she must have felt. I think knowing so many friends/family members who are currently or have been in abusive situations is why this hurts so badly, outside of actually knowing her.
I never would have thought, in a million years, that it would end like this…. Ever.
Bernice L. McFadden recreates not just the Mississippi flood of 1927 (one of the most destructive ever in the United States) but also the brutal murder of 14-year-old Emmett Till in 1955. It would be easy for her characters to recede in the glare of these events, but McFadden works a kind of miracle—not only do they retain their appealing humanity; their story eclipses the bonds of history to offer continuous surprises.
During a twenty three month period between 1979 and 1981 over 30 Black children were killed in Atlanta, terrorizing the Afro-American population. In July, 1980, after 14 children had been murdered, the mothers of some of the victims formed the Committee to Stop the Children’s Murders. They pointed out that a systematic campaign of murder was taking place and denounced the Atlanta police for failing to seriously investigate any of the killings. At first the police denied that there was any connection between the killings. The murders continued, with one child disappearing about every twenty-five days. People who lived in and around the Techwood housing project and the other poor Afro-American neighborhoods where the victims were kidnapped generally assumed that the klan or a similar racist organization was responsible.
Atlanta city officials created a highly publicized commission to investigate the murders. It is now clear that the main purpose of this commission was to cover up the fact that klansmen were carrying out these murders. Atlanta police commissioner Lee Patrick Brown told the people: “We can’t say the murders here are racially motivated because we don’t know the motivation.” The FBI, claiming to have used “scientific methods” to draw up a “psychological profile” of the killer, declared that he was a Black man from a broken family. The commission even paid for a “psychic” to come to Atlanta. She claimed that she could “see” the killer and backed up the FBI’s assertion that he was Afro-American.
Special attention was given to dispelling the idea that the klan was involved. The FBI declared that there was no indication of a “group effort” in the murders. In June, 1981, Georgia Governor Busbee and Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) officials announced with great fanfare that they had thoroughly investigated the activity of the klan in Georgia and had concluded that it did not present a serious threat to the people of Georgia. Dr. Joseph Lowrey, the traitorous liar who heads the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, was called upon to support this idea, telling the people that he did not believe the klan had anything to do with the murders.
It has now been confirmed that police and government officials not only knew that the klan was committing the murders but, in fact, knew the specific individuals responsible.
The Evidence Against the Klan
The evidence that exposes the klan’s responsibility for the murders is contained in police documents. The most illuminating of these were enclosed in a package “anonymously” sent to Wayne Williams’ lawyers.
The evidence centers around the Sanders family. Members of this family belong to the National States Rights Party / New Order of the Ku Klux Klan (NSRP), which is headquartered in Marrieta, an Atlanta suburb. Don Sanders is National Secretary of the NSRP and his father, Carleton, and five of his brothers, Charles, Terry, Ricky, Jerry and James, are members of the organization. The NSRP, headed by J.B. Stoner and Ed Fields, is one of the most rabid racist and fascist organizations in this country.
Members of the Sanders family have long criminal records including convictions for child molestation, murder, burglary, assault and battery, wife beating, statutory rape, armed robbery and narcotics charges. They are long time drug dealers.
The police documents include statements of police agents closely associated with the Sanders family. One of these operatives reported that members of the family told him that the klan was going to execute one Black boy a month, and after killing 20 children they were going to start killing Black women. This informant reported that Charles Sanders had pointed out to him a 14-year-old Black youth named Lubie Geter and said “See that little Black …? I’m going to get him I’m going to kill him I’m going to choke the Black … to death.” Several weeks later Geter was found strangled to death.
There is other evidence linking the Sanders family to Lubie Geter’s murder. Geter was last seen in a shopping center near where the Sanders family lives. An eyewitness saw Geter get into a car with a tall white man with a jagged scar on his neck on the day he disappeared. Carleton Sanders is tall and has a jagged scar on his neck. Another witness saw Geter on the same day in a blue Ford with two white men. Charles Sanders drove a blue Ford. Hairs of a Siberian husky dog were found on Geter’s body. Charles Sanders owned a Siberian husky.
Another victim, 11-year-old Earl Lee Terrell, was with Lubie Geter when Geter incurred Charles Sanders’ wrath by accidentally running into his parked car with a go-cart. Terrell disappeared near the same shopping center where Geter was abducted. Besides Terrell, four other victims were friends of Lubie Geter’s.
Twelve-year-old Charles Stephens, the 15th victim, was found murdered in a trailer park frequented by members of the Sanders family. On his body caucasian head hairs were found, along with more Siberian husky hairs. Altogether, husky hairs were found on the bodies of at least fifteen of the murdered children.
Dozens of witnesses reported seeing men dressed as police or security guards or wearing other types of uniforms with many of the young victims the last time they were seen alive. The Sanders family kept a stockpile of police and other uniforms.
Another informant told police that “Don Sanders had direct knowledge of who was responsible for the killings.” On April 1, 1981 the following telephone conversation between Don and Terry Sanders was recorded by a police wiretap:
Don: “…I might get out and ride around a little bit, and I might come by there.”
Terry: “Go find you another little kid, another little kid?”
Don: “Yeah, scope out some places. We’ll see you later.”
FBI report concerning brown Caucasian hairs found at a murder scene.
FBI report containing the Theory, Motive, Method, Group Composition & Supporting Evidence of the Murders
White male suspect in Atlanta Child Killings.
The man convicted, Wayne Williams
Known child victims
Name - Age - Date of disappearance
Edward Smith - 14 - July 21, 1979
Alfred Evans - 13 - July 25, 1979
Milton Harvey - 14 - September 4, 1979
Yusef Bell - 9 - October 21, 1979
Angel Lenair - 12 - March 4, 1980
Jeffery Mathis - 10 - March 11, 1980
Eric Middlebrooks - 14 - May 18, 1980
Chris Richardson - 12 - June 9, 1980
Latonya Wilson - 7 - June 22, 1980
Aaron Wyche - 10 - June 23, 1980
Anthony Carter - 9 - July 6, 1980
Earl Terell - 11 - July 30, 1980
Clifford Jones - 13 - August 20, 1980
Darren Glass - 10 - September 14, 1980
Charles Stephens - 12 - October 9, 1980
Aaron Jackson - 9 - November 1, 1980
Patrick Rogers - 16 - November 10, 1980
Lubie Geter - 14 - January 3, 1981
Terry Pue - 15 - January 22, 1981
Patrick Baltazar - 11 - February 6, 1981
Curtis Walker - 15 - February 19, 1981
Joseph Bell - 15 - March 2, 1981
Timothy Hill - 13 - March 13, 1981
The C.O.W.S.: The Atlanta Child Murders & Chet Dettlinger Part 1
This is Tayshana ‘Chicken’ Murphy. She went to my high school. She loved basketball and proved to be one of the best players in her age range. ESPN ranked as the top 16th female player in the nation for her graduating class.
At around 4:15 am on September 11th, 2011 she was shot in the head and found in the stairwell of her apartment building. It is believed to be over a dispute that did not even involve her. She was mistaken for a man that the murderer had ‘beef’ with. She was heard pleading for her life before she was killed.
She was only 18 years old. She had her entire life ahead of her and tremendous amounts of talent.She wanted to make something of herself but now she is the second student from my high school that has been killed due to gun violence within the last a year. She is the third person that I’ve known to be killed within the past year. And the fifth person that I’ve known to be shot within that same year.
When will it all stop? When will people learn that enough is enough? I’m tired of waking up to the news that someone I know has been shot. I’m tired of hearing that a party/event that I was supposed to attend ended in a shoot out. I’m tired of hearing about innocent youth being slain in the news. I’m tired of fearing that one of my friends will be next to die in the hands of cowards toting guns. I am truly tired.
June 26, 2011 in Jackson, MS, a man lost his life. His crime you ask? Being an African-American man. His murderers? 6 or maybe more white males about age 18. They’ve been called small, wiry, and many other things to make you feel sorry for them. But the bottom line is, no matter how small or young (which at 18 you are an adult), they had the control that night and they killed an innocent and helpless man. Of course we all hoped that Mississippi and the South could move away from it’s deep, dark past, but this case and the way it’s been handled so far only proves that we obviously haven’t progressed as much as we hope! We need Mississippi to handle this case fairly, like it would had the races been reversed.
How can you help? Reblog this and share this story! It needs to be heard!! I’ll add contact information for more officials as I get more information!