Today’s potpourri includes a couple of news items from the world of sports.
First up is Tennessee Titans wide receiver Damian Williams who was charged earlier this month with domestic violence against Shelley Anne David. She called police and told them he had grabbed her by the arm and bruised her in a domestic dispute. Williams denied the allegations and pointed police to a series of text messages he’d received from David promising to drop the charges in exchange for $5,000. Read about it here (NFL.com, 6/27/11).
The police set up a sting operation in which Williams met with David in a parking lot and handed her a check for $5,000. That done, police arrested her and charged her with extortion.
What’s interesting is that David apparently wasn’t sure about charging Williams, but the police did so anyway as “per department policy.” So once again, we have mandatory charging irrespective of what the accuser says or wants. It’s the common practice when DV is claimed despite the fact that a recent study shows that mandatory charging policies likely make DV worse because actual victims are hesitant to involve the police and courts in what they see as a private matter.
Second up here is wrestler Hulk Hogan whose ex-wife went on the “Today” show with Matt Lauer to peddle her recent tell-all memoir (Ace Show Biz, 6/29/11). She claimed, in print and on the air, that he was abusive to her throughout their marriage.
Hogan recently fired back calling Linda Hogan “delusional” and her claims of abuse a “total, blatant lie.”
Hulk explained, “If you step back and take a really good look at this – if you take the Hulk Hogan name out of her situation, her life, her career, the air she breathes… she’s out of gas.” He added, “She’s still riding on the Hulk Hogan name.
What’s her explanation for never once going to authorities or anyone else (doctors, lawyers, friends, relatives) during their marriage to report the alleged abuse?
“I was afraid to say anything. Had I said something, the carpet would have been pulled up underneath his career. I don’t know what my kids would have done…”
What would the kids have done? Well, for starters, their mother could have divorced their famous dad and the kids would have gotten large sums of money in child support. So that excuse is a non-starter.
But what’s really interesting is that the two former spouses essentially agree. He says she’s making the allegations for the money, i.e. what’s her book really amount to without his name and some juicy charges that now can neither be proven nor disproven? She says she didn’t report him so his career and earnings would remain intact. In other words, they both agree that it’s all about money. Great minds think alike.
The last comes from the San Francisco bay area. I reported not long ago on the trial of Rosa Hill and her mother Mei Li. They were both accused of murdering her ex-husband’s 91-year-old grandmother and attempting to murder him. Their motive was to get custody of Rosa and Eric Hill’s child.
Rosa had tried allegations of child sexual abuse against Eric, but investigations into them showed no abuse. So Rosa and her mom went to the next step; they started planning his murder. They bought a variety of weapons including two hand guns, a taser, a sword and a crossbow. They put together a “to do” list for murder. They did online research on how to murder someone.
Then, on the appointed day, Rosa Hill put on a mask and shouldered a backpack stuffed with the aforementioned weapons and went over to Eric’s house supposedly to visit the child.
Instead, she went in the back door, attacked his grandmother with a taser and beat and strangled her to death. She then headed upstairs to finish off her ex, but she only managed to tase him once. He successfully fought off her other efforts to do him in.
So the two were charged with murder and attempted murder and guess what their defense was. I’m not making this up. Their attorney told the jury that they’d never intended to kill anyone and that it was all done in self-defense. Seriously, Rosa just happened to cart all those weapons over to her ex’s house for her routine child visitation. Isn’t that what most parents do?
Anyway, this article tells us that the pair were convicted of first-degree murder and first-degree attempted murder (San Jose Mercury News, 6/28/11). The jury found that Mei Li was culpable in the attacks because she took part in the planning and execution of crimes. Sentencing will come later.