“Twisted Morality”

 In Blog

Is there any justification for homicide? Try this situation on for size…

I’ve just spent the last hour watching one of those great crime shows. In this episode, a grandfather was murdered by his grandson and his grandson’s best friend. The granddaughter AND the mother also helped.

What would cause a daughter and her children to rise up against the family patriarch? A lifetime of abuse, that’s what.

After hours of interviews, it was discovered that the grandfather had, for the last four decades, abused everyone in his family. He’d repeatedly raped his own daughter, then physically and emotionally abused her, to boot. Throw in the same treatment to his grandchildren(both male and female) and simply put, the grandson felt that to protect his mom and sis, Grandpa had to die.

After the grandson murdered his family and buried him in the backyard, he admitted what he’d done to his mom and sis. And then? They all pitched in to clean up the physical evidence. After that, according to the grandson, he had the first night of restful sleep of his entire life.

Now, that’s the background. Here’s what I found most interesting:

Once Grandpa was dead, the grandson pulled his wallet. He took the $600 from the patriarch, paid off the family’s bills and bought groceries for his mom and sister. Do you find this as interesting as I do? The son will commit murder, but he’s not willing to let the bills go unpaid. And then, with the money leftover, he purchased food for his family.

Having never killed anyone, I don’t know what I’d feel. I don’t know what I’d do. I do, however, find it really intriguing one can justify murder 1, but isn’t willing to let the light bill go without being paid.

Battered family syndrome? That was the defense. Justified? That’s up to a jury to determine.

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Showing 2 comments
  • Susabelle

    Unless you’ve lived in an abusive situation, you don’t know how it feels or what it would lead you to do. There is much of law enforcement that doesn’t understand this aspect of real life. I’ve been there. I know. What this family did was completely “normal” for them.

  • Marcus Engel

    Hi Susabelle,

    Thanks for the comment! Here are a few more thoughts…

    The point of the blog post sounds almost identical to your comments; a situation can alter the commonly thought way of responding. I.E., the grandson was abused. That abuse led him to believe killing his sleeping grandfather was the appropriate response. Society has deemed this act homicide, justifiable or not. If asked, the grandson would probably say murder is wrong – yet he did it. By the grandson’s actions, he also knows not paying the bills and/or having the family go hungry is wrong.

    It’s just an interesting psychological example to ponder.

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