Cara, over at the Curvature, has a blurb about Jessie Davis and the link between the murder of women and relationships. That is: that 1 in 3 women who are murdered are killed by current or ex husbands or boyfriends. That's staggering.
She also notes that one of the things that made this case so newsworthy is that she was pregnant and likely to give birth soon when she was murdered. That's probably accurate. Sadly, she isn't alone in that regard, although there's much less news around the case of Jennifer Kathleen Nielsen. Nielsen, 22, who was expected to give birth later this week or next, was murdered outside a gas station while she was delivering papers on her second job. Police don't know yet why she was killed, but have released a sketch of a person of interest wanted for questioning.
Cases like this are important to get the word out about- it's a terrible tragedy whenever someone is murdered, but it seems especially so when there's no explanation, no reason, no information at all about what happened. I can only imagine how hard this must be for her family. Her husband is faced with explaining to their children- both under 5- why their mother can't come home anymore. Her family have to deal with the pain of having a loved one taken from them in a brutal and senseless act. And none of them have any answers about who did this or why.
This particular case also highlights one of the interesting and awful things about the internet- when you make connections to people online, you never know who they are offline, and you never know what kinds of things happen to them. If Nielsen had been a regular commentor on any of the blogs I read, she'd have disappeared, and I'd have never known why. As it turns out, her brother is a long-time member of a web-community that I used to be really active in. I was one of the founding members, and I've known this guy for years. My heart goes out to him, and his family, in this time of loss. I can only imagine the pain and frustration that they're probably feeling right now. I can only hope that justice is served.
The Davis case is still getting a lot of media coverage, and I certainly don't want to give the impression that I'm not absolutely sympathetic to her family and their loss, and to the heinousness of that crime. But, right now, there's an important distinction between Nielsen and Davis. Both cases are terrible tragedies, but Davis' case was solved. Her killer is being arraigned, and the wheels of justice are turning. Nielsen's killer is still out there, somewhere, and the police are looking for clues. Her family are still looking for answers and trying to understand what happened. I know, this is a pretty sad way to start the week, but I'm just totally at a loss here. Things like this are just so absolutely senseless.
There's a fund being set up to help Nielsen's family, in case anyone is interested.
Nielsen Family Fund
First Flight Credit Union
1156 North Main Street
Fuquay-Varina, NC 27526