One of the hardest things so many of us face after a loved one is murdered is trying to understand “Why?” If we know the murderer, it may be even more painful. Why did we not see this coming? This thought plays repeatedly in our minds. Tony Wik, the man who planned the murder of our son, Rob, told me, three days before he had him murdered, that Rob was like a brother to him. He came to visit us at our home to see if we were going to be there that weekend. I told him that we were not going to home but Rob was going to be home. Little did I know that he was planning Rob’s murder and he wanted to make sure the rest of us would not be there.
He was able to lure Rob away from our home that following Saturday so he could bring two men into our home and wait for Rob to return. He hired his cousin, Robert Partlow, and a friend of Robert’s, Tim Sundeen, to hide in our home with him and wait for Rob to return home. Sundeen was waiting behind the door with a bat to murder our son. Wik then made sure Rob was dead and they buried his body in the woods about 11 miles from our home.
After they buried Rob and got rid of evidence, Tony came back to our house and stopped at Rob’s grandparent’s home next door to our home, and knocked at the door to ask if they had seen Rob. Tony told them that Rob and he had set a time to meet and Rob never showed up. He even said he was worried about him. Tony was already looking for an alibi. He never showed any remorse or ever admitted that he had any involvement in the murder of Rob.
Today, he is still saying he is innocent. The other men confessed and implicated Tony after Rob’s body was found. Wik would even cry when interrogated about his involvement in the murder of Rob. He would have never murdered his best friend! He would come over to our house after the murder so that we would think he was worried about finding Rob and even after Rob’s body was unearthed, he came over to let us think he wanted to help solve the crime.
Tony Wik was not arrested until eight months after the murder of our son. Clackamas County wanted to build a solid case even though the men he hired were in jail. Tony’s own uncle testified against him. Yet, he still claims he was not even in the house when they murdered Rob thirty years ago.
I became fascinated with people who showed no remorse even if they were guilty and they could look you in the eyes and lie no matter what they did. Committing a murder did not affect them. In meeting new POMC members, many of the families experienced the same type of criminal behavior. It was even more obvious in cases where a serial killer was involved. I tried to read everything I could about “sociopathic behavior.” It is referred to now as “antisocial personality disorder.” I was not impressed with calling it antisocial; as they did not sound cruel enough for what these people were capable of doing. I continue to read about this type of behavior and talk to experts any chance that I might get.
Donald Black, a consultant to the Iowa Department of Corrections, studied antisocial personality disorder (ASP) for over 20 years. He felt that “antisocial” was not the best word to describe a ‘”sociopath” either. Yet, the term came about because the disorder is anti-society. Black believes that “as a society we need to study ASP.” He believes, “ASP is as common as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, panic disorder and obsessive-compulsive disorder.” Black believes that ASP likely could be traced to “just about any bad thing” in our society. He believes that ASP is a “recurrent and serial pattern of misbehavior that involves all significant facets of life and is marked by violation of social norms and regulations that occur over time, ranging from repeated lies and petty theft to violence—and even murder, in most serious cases.”
WHAT ACTUALLY IS ANTISOCIAL PERSONALITY?
Black believes that ASP is “a recurrent and serial pattern of misbehavior that involves all significant facets of life and is marked by violation of social norms and regulations that occur over time, ranging from repeated lies and petty theft to violence---and even murder, in the most serious cases.” Dr. Robert Hare, another specialist in the field, developed a psycho-diagnostic list of traits that he found ASP had in common. They included the following:
In addition, Dr. Hare found that people who have antisocial personalities share other personality traits that can be dangerous or problematic to other individuals: They take advantage of others by lying, deceiving, and are manipulative; They show a disregard for rights, property, or safety of others; Lack empathy for others needs and feelings; Experience little remorse for harm or injury they cause to others; They appear to be impervious to consequences and unable to respond to threats or consequences; They blame their difficulties on other people; Often appear to gain pleasure by being intimidating and violent; Are impulsive, seek thrills, novelty, and excitement, and require high levels of stimulation; Are unreliable and irresponsible and may fail to meet work obligations or honor financial commitments; May engage in antisocial behavior, including unlawful activities, substance abuse, or interpersonal violence; May repeatedly convince others of their commitment to change, leading others to think “this time is really different,” only to revert to their previously maladaptive behavior.
I think that it is so important for us to know about antisocial personalities. When I am by people who are antisocial, I get chills up and down my spine. It is too bad that we cannot put signs on them saying, “BEWARE! THIS PERSON CAN BE DANGEROUS TO YOUR HEALTH.” There are no medications specifically approved by the Food and Drug Administration to treat antisocial personality disorder. There are no randomized controlled trials that any pharmaceutical treatment is effective in improving the basic features of ASP.
One question that I found very interesting was by Elizabeth W. Her name was not given in order to protect her privacy. She was asked, “What is it like to closely know a diagnosed psychopath?” She replied, “Heartbreaking. Mine not his of course. He, for all his beauty and vivacious charm really had no heart to break. It took me six years of my life and hundreds of thousands of dollars, compromised my health, destroyed my self-confidence, and self-esteem. I am just so grateful to be free of his detrimental influence. In the beginning of their relationship, Elizabeth, little by little, began to give him more control. Sadly, she actually began to be afraid of him. She was lucky that he was arrested for another crime and was put in jail. This man could have murdered her if she would have tried to get him to move. Luckily, he did not want to lose his “golden egg,”
Over the years, I have talked to many mothers whose children were murdered by a man they thought would be good to their child or children. There were also women who murdered children in the homes of the men they were living with. Sadly, we need to know about ASP. We must not lose sight of the people who are wonderful parents though they are not biologically related.
The justice system does not recognize ASP as a reason to say a person is not responsible for the crime they committed. Antisocial disorder describes a pattern of behavior, decisions, and feelings. It does mean that they are the ones who are making the choices. They know the difference between right and wrong. They are accountable for their actions and need to be. Our justice system also needs to be responsible for protecting society from this type of behavior. However, I was also unaware that there were people like this before my son was murdered.
All my love and support, Mary Elledge
September 22, 2016
To whom it may concern:
I would like to query whether the contents of "Hurled Into Darkness" would be of interst to you. It is a true story of what it was like to lose my son and his fiance in a double homicide, to a serial killer, in Portland, Oregon, in 1992.
Because there is limited, parental information on this kind of traumatic grief and its aftermath, I was compelled to address this important subject, which is often vastly misunderstood in its totality. It is a Parthian shot in its fullest meaning.
It is a story of "complicated grief" and what can be learned and addressed through the tragedy of losing a child to homicide. In the beginning, if I had been warned what lay ahead of me, I would have said that I could not do this. Not only was there no preparation for this kind of tradedy but I did not know what I had in me to handle it. In the beginning, it became a fight for my own life.
Unlike a lot of disorders following the loss of a child, "complicated grief" tends to persist for years and become a chronic distressed and constant frame of mind. Adding to is compilation, it is unsolved for many years. And then, through what was deemed a miraculous intervention, with complicated events and DNA, the murderer was found. The trial takes me on another weathering journey, and again, I must chose my path. There are different choices and roads to take, to begin my mending.
A Rabbi wrote, "The darkness is the real gift of this place. We must not try to avoid the darkness. It has much to teach us."
Hope did not come back in a big surge, it came back trickling over the following years, like streams traveling over many rocks. This memoir is written with the candor and in short chapters giving the reader an easier way to move through the story. Also, for those who are dealing with this kind of loss, a shorter version is the only way the material can be absorbed.
Hurled Into Darkness is on Amazon and Kindle.
The time has come around again;
To celebrate Krystle Rose’s birthday,
Because love has no end.
We will also be remembering all
Of our loved ones who were
So cruelly taken away;
We know though that
In our hearts they will always stay.
Krystle was just seventeen,
When she was stolen from us;
Her family worked so hard to find her for a year
And the kindness others showed was
More than just a plus.
Krystle was here for such a short time;
Taking her life from all of us,
Is the worst type of crime.
This charming young lady loved music so much;
When we hear her favorite songs play.
It is as if their beauty was from her touch.
Music was important to Krystle and
She liked the band “Korn”;
She was so fun to be around:
She would never have wanted us to morn.
Today, we honor her life that was cut so short;
But, it is her love and kindness
Though that we support.
I bet Krystle is watching from heaven above;
She now represents nothing but love.
It is so thinkable that Krystle is smiling down
On all of us here:
She has probably gotten our loved ones’
Together so we can feel them near!
Please know Krystle, we are all here for you;
We all know that you brought or loved ones too.
For our “Holiday Memorial on December 5th, if we do not have a picture of your loved one already, please mail or e-mail it to: Pat Schwiebert at 2116 N. E. 18th Street, Portland . OR 97212. Her e-mail is: email@example.com. Pat needs the pictures as soon as possible so she can include them in our slide show. Your loved one’s name will be read out loud even if we do not have a picture on our board.
We are so grateful to Pat and her family at “The Peace House”, where we hold our meetings. They spend hours decorating their home so it is beautiful for our holiday memorial. For many, this time is the most special day they have during the holiday season since the murder of their loved one. It is a safe place to be.
On behalf of the Greater Portland Area Chapter of Parents of Murdered Children, I would like to express our deepest appreciation to all of the generous people who have donated to the building of our addition memorial wall. We have a beautiful POMC Memorial now and families and friends from all over Oregon and Washington come to honor the memory of their loved ones who were so brutally taken from them. Sadly to say, our wall is completely filled. We have 500 names engraved on it.
What we are planning to do when we have enough funds is to build an additional wall that will hold 1000 more names. We have so many families who are waiting to add their loved ones’ name. It means so much to them because one of our greatest fears as a co-victims of homicide is that our loved one will not be remembered. They did not get to live the life they were suppose to. Some of the names on our wall belong to little babies to any age of adult. As co-victims, we have all suffered the same loss, the loss of a loved one to homicide. Our lives were completely changed. Homicide cannot be resolved.
What is also important is that we also educate the public when people come to see our wall. Murder can happen to any family. If people see the amount of people who are murdered, they will realize how important protection of society truly is. We need a justice system that works and laws for the protection of society. At POMC, we wish that people would never need our services. Sadly to say, we are getting more calls each day.
Co-victims of homicide need the peace and tranquility we are able to achieve at our POMC Memorial Wall. We are surrounded by beautiful sequoia trees, running water from the memorial, flowers, verses engraved on the stones that stand tall by the wall and a serenity that gives them hope and a place to gather and see that they are not alone.
We again ask for your help and thank those who have been so generous to our cause. If you would like to help, please go to the website of “Go Fund Me” and look under “POMC Memorial Wall”. All donations are appreciated and tax deductible. So many of our members are waiting to add their loved one’s name to the wall. Oregon has the largest POMC Memorial in the United States. Thank you for your help.
Funding for our new POMC Oregon/Washington Wall officially began this January, 2015. Members and friends of our chapter have been generous with donations and we are so thankful. Many of our new members are waiting for their loved ones names to be put on our new wall. We are listing new names that will be engraved when the wall is completed. We ask that members will call us, e-mail, or mail the information if you do not see your loved ones name on the list. The phone number is 503-656-8039, the e-mail is: firstname.lastname@example.org or POMC, 14427 S. Forsythe Road.
We are designing the wall now and hoping to build a wall that will accommodate more names than the existing wall. We want to list all of our loved ones
If any of our members work at a company or know of anyone who would like to make a donation please let us know or it is fine for you to ask for a donation yourself. We are a non-profit organization. Donations are tax deductible. Please use the phone contact numbers from the first paragraph of this article. Thank you so much for your support.
Amber Rhiannon Adams
Austin Joe Hrynko
Braylon Michael Duguay
Cheritee Yvonne Vance
Christopher James Loftus
Coltin Jacob Salsbury
Craig C. Moritz Jr.
Dale Archie Brown
David G. Swapp Jr.
Dean A. Kuntz
Devan Chanel Schmidt
Douglas Oliver Benton
Glen Edward Drysdale
Harold Sloan Blanchard
Jason Dale Johnson
Jason Michael Ell
Jason Scott Williams
Jayme Sue Austin
Jeffery Ray Brown
Jessica Lynn Clark
Jodi Marie Brewer
Joseph Ben Peterson
Julio Cesar Marquev
Kathleen Lois Bauman
Kayla Ann Hendrickson
Kaylee Anne Sawyer
Keith Ardell Benefield
Kenneth Dylan Lambert
Krystal Jaye Mitchell
Kyle William Peckham
Laura Jean Bohlen
London Grey McCabe
Marcos Juan Castillo
Molly Irene McCarter
Nicolas Lamont Lawson
Nicolette Naomi “Nikki” Elias
Paul W. Miller
Rachelle “Shelly” Law
Randall Leo Gettman
Rebekah “Becky” Selegue Johnson
Ryan Robert Jones
Sahara Grace Dwight
Steve Leroy Johnson
William Roland Hatch III
Thomas J. Fite
(Please contact us if your loved one’s name does not appear on this paper and you would like to have it added. A form will be added to our newsletter each month to be used for adding names for the wall when it is completed. Please check the spelling of your loved one’s name and let us know if it is wrong. You can e-mail us at email@example.com, call 505-656-8039, or mail us at POMC, 14427 S. Forsythe Rd., Oregon City, OR 97045.)
PAT AND KEITH E.
LAW OFFICE OF JOSH LAMBORN (COLTIN JACOB SALISBURY)
RENA AND DANIEL S.
JOHN AND MARLENE S.
JEFFERY C. AND MARVIA C. S.
The Greater Portland Chapter is proud to announce that Beth Greear has created a facebook support group for POMC members. To reach it use: www.facebook.com/groups/POMC.Portlalnd.Vancouver/ Beth said that there are several “admins” of the page so she is sure it will be very beneficial to anyone who would like to use it.
We cannot thank her enough for the chance to have even more support for our members. Beth is an outstanding person who is always there to reach out to help others. She even brought a delicious dessert for our December holiday meeting. We will be writing more on this next month and giving the names of other members who are helping with this project.
The murder of a loved one is the most horrific thing a person can experience. The only thing that can make it worse is a substandard initial investigation or not seeing justice in your case. Timely collection of evidence followed by an arrest and conviction would provide a degree of comfort, but what happens to co-victims when a thorough investigation is not done, and there is no arrest? Many of the victims' friends and acquaintances will gradually let go of their grief over time, but the closest of friends and family will remain in a state of sorrow, haunted by the injustice of investigators that may not have conformed to rules or standard operating procedures during their initial investigation. Not only is there no relief, but the agony of the event changes their lives forever, and becomes part of their very being. Co-victims' everyday battle becomes their effort to get a thorough investigation.
Helplessness is a gut-wrenching emotion which plagues co-victims who are not allowed to assist with the investigation and are longing for justice. We don't want to let our loved one down; we are compelled to fight for justice no matter how long it takes. As the process drags on, frustration grows. Many times, due to confidentiality, important conversations between co-victims and law enforcement are avoided, and this lack of communication can cause co-victims to feel neglected and disrespected, which often manifests itself in frustration, anger, and a loss of confidence in the investigators. Regular contact and truthfulness are two of the most important things survivors need from law enforcement. We need investigators to focus on routine communication of as much information as possible with sensitivity and without being misleading. Survivors’ perception that information is not being shared with them can result in them feeling they have been secondarily victimized. As the years pass, co-victims start wondering if their unsolved homicide could be reviewed by a fresh set of eyes, and they often look into getting their case to a cold case unit, only to find out that some jurisdictions don't even have a cold case unit. If there is a cold case unit in their jurisdiction, cases are evaluated and chosen according to a set of criteria. Co-victims whose cases seem to be continuously passed over for review become dismayed and even angry toward law enforcement. Anger can mobilize psychological resources for corrective action, but uncontrolled anger can negatively affect personal or social well-being.
Co-victims who put forth the effort to examine and understand the cold case process and various factors which must be dealt with during cold case investigations are able to put the process into perspective. They must understand that cold cases are among the most difficult and frustrating cases for both co-victims and law enforcement, and not every case is chosen to be investigated. It helps to review the following criteria checklist used by the National Sheriff’s Association, Justice Solutions and POMC:
Complete an application for cold case review. This application includes detailed information regarding agency reports, victimology, suspects/persons of interest, timeline, coroner, lab reports, investigation documents, weapon descriptions and media releases.
Co-victims should also be aware that closing rates can be more successful if investigators work only one or two cases at a time. At this point, if we find out that our case doesn’t qualify for review by a cold case unit, our only hope is that a thorough re-investigation will be done by homicide investigators.
If you have comments or questions about this article, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call Pat Kuiper at 702-809-8654 to get your loved ones' name listed in our newsletter. Feel free to contact Pat if you would like to share your story.
Lucy Eilertson (1998)
Diana Moffitt (1987)
Donald James Brown (2007)
Kimberly Larson Reames (1983)
William (Bill) Mark Stratton (2005)
The Greater Portland Chapter is so proud of our member, Amanda Harris, for launching her official site for siblings. Amanda is offering the Website: www.unitingsiblings.com so that sibling co-victims of homicide have a place to go where they will be understood and supported. This site will include video, chat, and telephone conference via a secure and private interface. Amanda is paying for the expenses and will be delighted to be another support for sibling co-victims. Amanda can also be reached at: Amanda@unitingsiblings.com or 623-866-3189.
Amanda Harris is now ready to start her web site for siblings. The Portland Chapter is excited about the support and understanding this new group will be for the many often overlooked survivors.
Please find, enclosed, $10.00 for my annual subscription (three issues) for the Survivors Newsletter.
(Please consider adding an extra subscription fee to help defray the cost for someone who cannot afford it.)
CITY, STATE, ZIP____________________________________________________________________
MAIL TO: POMC, INC. ENCLOSED IS MY: CHECK _________________
100 E. EIGHTH STREET, B-41 MONEY ORDER__________
CINCINATTI, OH 54202
Download form here
PRINTED NAME OF LOVED ONE_________________________________________ (This will be engraved on the wall)
LOVED ONE’S BIRTHDATE____________________________ DEATH DATE____________________________
MEMBER/FRIEND’S NAME AND ADDRESS ____________________________________________________________
MEMBER/FRIEND’S PHONE NUMBER_____________________________ Do you want a Newsletter? Yes No
SIGNATURE FOR PERMISSION TO
ENGRAVE NAME AND SPELLING APPROVAL_________________________________________________________
Please submit one form for each loved one. Please make efforts with other family members/friends to ensure multiple requests are not received for the same name. When completed, please mail, fax, or e-mail to the following places: POMC, Mary Elledge, 14427 S. Forsythe Road, Oregon City, OR 97045 or fax 503-656-4420, or e-mail: email@example.com. If you have any questions, please call 503-656-8039.
Download form here
Please Complete and Return to Memorial Garden,
POMC 14427 S. Forsythe Rd Oregon City, OR 97045
100% of Contributions are Tax Deductible
Name:____________________________________________ phone: __________________________
Gift in Memory of: __________________________________________________________
Anonymous gift (will not be recognized at the Memorial Garden or in published materials)
Method of Payment:
Credit Card #_________________________________________Exp Date:___________
Name on Card _________________________________________________________________
Pledged Payment (to be completed by December 31, 2014)
Please add notes on payment timing _________________________________________
Thank you for helping to create the Oregon-Washington Public Memorial Garden. Your generosity will never be forgotten.
Download form here
Tacoma Violent Crime Victim Services Welcomes Homicide Survivors
Peer Support Group Meeting
If someone you love has been the victim of a homicide, we invite you to attend our monthly support group meeting. You will find acceptance, compassion and support.
Place: United Way Building
3rd FLOOR CONFERENCE ROOM
Date: 3rd Wednesday of Each Month!
Time: 7:30PM – 10:00PM
The United Way Building is located in Tacoma, at 1501 Pacific Avenue. This is the same building that the VCVS office is located in. It is next to Union Station on the north side. As you pass Union Station you will see the United Way Building. Parking is on the south side of the building. Please park your vehicle in an open space and enter the building’s front entrance and take the elevator to the third floor. The conference room is Suite 312. Please call Lew Cox for more information (253) 383-5254.
POMC'S Court Watch Program is designed to help families maneuver through the court system. Two of the most important aspects of Court Watch are the prevention of any re-victimization to family members, and the minimizing of the emotional pain of going through hearings and trials.
If you would like support from POMC during hearings and trials or want to offer assistance, call Pat Elmore at 503-312-5681 or Allen Tremain at 503-522- 0577.
Each month a number of newsletter are returned due to delivery problems. In addition to the initial postage, return postage is charged by the Postal Service. To minimize this expense, please write to the return address of this newsletter or contact Gayle if your address changes or you no longer wish to receive this publication.