With Valentine's Day having just occurred, we all saw how insanely romantic people can get. There isn't a better feeling in the world than being newly in love ... That feeling can make people believe that they are capable of anything and can accomplish whatever they set their mind to. At the risk of sounding too cliche, we've all seen how love can truly make the world go 'round, but on the flip side of that, I've had the unfortunate experience of seeing one too many occasions where love has driven people to do terrible things.
In my opinion, domestic murders are the worst crime scenes to be called to. What was once a happy home is now a complete and utter nightmare. The most unfortunate part of these cases is the number of times overkill plays a role. Emotions can turn deadly and the actual act of making sure that a person is dead by continuing to physically harm them is both frightening and disturbing.
I have worked my share of domestic murder cases and with each one the challenge isn't figuring out who did it, but rather wrapping my head around how people can get to a point where they kill someone they love. The worst domestic murder scene that I witnessed was fueled by an insane amount of jealousy and involved a gay couple that had been together for several years. When I arrived at their home, I found a scene that would rival even the goriest horror movie -- large puddles of blood, overturned furniture, broken dishes and a killer who sat oddly calm on the front porch covered in his boyfriend's blood.
The eerie calm of the killer as he explained what happened shook me to the core. He spoke about finding another man in the house upon his return from work and how he remained levelheaded while speaking with his boyfriend until it was unmistakably clear what had been going on. The idea that the man he loved so much could do something so hurtful sparked something awful inside of him. He didn't own a gun and so he went to the kitchen and grabbed a large knife from the counter. He told us that after the first stab to his boyfriend's neck, his rage only intensified and he lost control of himself as he continued to picture his boyfriend with another man.
Months after this case was closed, the motivation continued to blow my mind ... Love led this man to a level of jealousy that he had never experienced in himself before. The idea of losing his boyfriend to another man became so painful that he adopted a dangerous mentality - "if I can't have him, no one can."
At the end of the day when the case is solved and the bad guy is behind bars, I know my job has been done. As I head home and finally step out of a killer's world and back into my own, I am reminded of the thin line that exists between love and hate. Unfortunately in my profession I don't have the opportunity to see much love, I only see what love can do when it's turned inside out. Case after case, I still can't wrap my head around it.