Casey James Lawhorn, age 24, allegedly killed his mother Vi Lawhorn and friend Avery Gaines then confessed to the crime on Facebook, reports ABC. Lawhorn’s profile has since been removed, but his post was preserved as two screengrabs. You can read it here but it is very disturbing (which is why I elected to not simply post the grabs). Lawhorn said he was going to commit suicide, and indicated suicidal ideation for years, dating back to his time as a student at Middle Tennessee State University. He said in the post that he’d killed his mother and his friend with a rifle. He said his friend died immediately but he shot his mother several times. Lawhorn said he did not harm his pets. He seemed serious about committing suicide, saying “how should I be expected to not kill myself?”
This is the blog formerly known as True Crime Wire. I began the site originally to return to the thing that launched my writing career–true crime–then said career became very busy.
Fortunately that’s still basically true, but just in the last year alone, the profile of true crime as a news category, as a podcast and blog subject, as a genre people openly discuss has changed. A lot.
When I began a true crime blog in 2004 it was still the kind of thing people were hesitant to discuss. Not ashamed, exactly, but occasionally embarrassed. Don’t underestimate how weird it can feel to begin a discussion of some old mystery like the Zodiac Killer only to have someone stare at you like they’re afraid you might murder them in their bed.
Now, people wear their love of true crime on their sleeves. It’s a good time to do this without any apology.
So, I have a plan with the True Crime Observer (which, as referred to above, is called True Crime Wire in the archives). I’ll begin with quick hits, pure aggregation, then as I have time work on longer form things.
Treat this blog as a companion to my column for Real Clear Life. That’s one post a week, but the fun I’ve had doing it was another factor in setting this up. That, and I just liked the name. When I found no one was using it, I had to snap it up.
More to come.
I’ve taken too long to do this. For now, all my personal blogging on any subject–including crime–will be here:
A Medium-hosted blog. Years ago I understood it’s wisest to confine your non-paid blogging to one destination but my ADD-fueled curiosity about platforms stayed in control.
I’m going to try and just focus on the one site for now, though. So follow that link.
UPDATE— An unnamed suspect in this homicide has reportedly been found dead in a truck, according to OKC police.
On Tuesday afternoon Michael Winchester, a 52-year-old Southwest Airlines employee, was shot and killed just outside Will Rogers World Airport in Oklahoma City, OK. Winchester was also reportedly the father of James Winchester, a member of the Kansas City Chiefs pro football team.
The airport was essentially locked down following the shooting, and the New York Daily News reported that some sources indicated a “sniper’s nest” was found in a parking garage near the scene of the shooting. A law enforcement spokesman wouldn’t confirm anything regarding evidence Mr. Winchester was the victim of a long distance shooter to the Daily News.
Southwest released a statement about the crime stating that the “Southwest Airlines Family is deeply saddened” by Mr. Winchester’s “passing.”
Will Rogers World Airport was frozen as police figured out what was going on, with passengers and staff sheltering in place.
I said I’d be updating this site more. I’m still not sure as to what approach to take, but I wanted to make note of this crime in part because the mention of a possible “sniper’s nest” was exceptionally strange.
The Daily Mail reported that as of Tuesday evening the airport was still shut down with departures and arrivals on hold “until further notice.”
I’m about to start updating this blog as often as I can. That may not be daily, but hopefully pretty frequently. Let’s do this.