Stalking risk, and threat assessment – why wasn’t this done?

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Morgan wasn’t a public figure, although she was very special to most of the people that knew her, but her stalker did live and work right by our house, so I have copied a piece of the study that discusses Type II category stalkers, which includes the Type 1 offenders.  Unbeknownst to me Morgan’s stalker worked at City Market in El Jebel, where we would send Morgan by herself to pick up groceries when she had just gotten her license and was a new driver.  The little five minute drive included parking in a lot and two stoplights. Or she could take the frontage roads and have an eight minute drive with no lights.  Great practice for a new driver venturing out on her own for the first times.

We know the obsession with Morgan started long before we knew there was a problem, and we believe it was at that grocery store that he first saw Morgan, and began his deadly obsession.  We also know, since many readers of the blog have come forward over the last year and shared their stories that the same M.O. has been happening in the subdivisions right across from ours.  In our very limited way we have established that for at least 4 years before Morgan’s stalking this has been going on.  There are reported incidents the summer before, and one even 2 weeks before, while Morgan was out of town.  All of these more recent incidents were called in to the Garfield County Sheriff’s office.  With that knowledge, the Sheriff’s office should have had a protocol that would have enabled them to assess Morgan’s situation.  In view of a continued pattern in the immediate neighborhood they should have dealt with it in a completely different way than they did.  This is just one thing that HAS to change or others will keep falling to the same fate as Morgan in this County.  Meanwhile all I can tell you is there is an undeniable effort on the Counties part to try and cover it all up, pretend it is not happening or never happened.  This blind eye approach can’t last forever.  The word is out – and more people who spread the word, will raise awareness and they will make all the difference in the world, more victims will be protected, and they will demand that their law enforcement agencies do what is right.

Along these lines I would like to share a little bit of knowledge I have gleaned from a paper that was written about that typology…

Behavioral Sciences and the Law Behav. Sci. Law (2011) Published online in Wiley Online Library ( DOI: 10.1002/bsl.975

Predictors of Recidivism by Stalkers: A Nine-year Follow-up of Police Contacts

Angela W. Eke, Ph.D.*, N. Zoe Hilton, Ph.D.y, J. Reid Meloy, Ph.D.z, Kris Mohandie, Ph.D.x and Jennette Williams, R.Dipl.$

To summarize the paper reports that in a study done on 78 offenders, 77% reoffended within an average follow-up of 106 months (8.8 years).  Over half were charged for new stalking related offenses and 33% for violent recidivism.  The existing literature predicted this violent reoffending, including sexual offenses, because of the known risk factors: first conviction at a younger age, prior release failures, and criminal history.

With Morgan’s stalker we now know that all of these things fit his profile.

Quoted from the Paper: Type II categories include Public Figure (targeting a victim whom they identified from their public or media appearances) and Private Stranger (pursuing a victim not previously known to ‘‘the stalker’’ but who lives or works within the stalker’s environment) stalkers who had no prior relationship with their targets. Overall, Type I offenders committed more threats and violence and, proportionally, included more males stalking females. 

My hope is in the future a public outcry to law enforcement to change the “small town mentality” and stop using it as an excuse will bring about change.  There is a suggested national protocol for law enforcement agencies that they can use and learn from to stop untold emotional trauma to stalking victims and also save lives. The figures vary widely but victims of violent stalkers lose their lives 9% to 18% of the time.  If going to the grocery store netted you a 9-18% chance of being killed I bet you’d just go out to dinner.

But I want to question those number severely.  Morgan was stalked and murdered.  A forensic toxicologist is quite certain from all of her labs.  A forensic Psychologist sees lethal danger every step of the way, and we really don’t have to wonder if he is right because Morgan is dead.  The Sheriff announces he will never investigate, and the contracted pathologist for Garfield County (that did Morgan’s autopsy) calculates what all the numbers mean for Morgan and his math has a PhD of biological engineering from MIT shaking her head in disbelief.  And then the pathologist points at the non investigation into her stalker as good rational that the stalker was not involved in her death.

There are some extremely good stalking laws that are also on the books, but are not being enforced – WHY NOT?  The protection of our families from criminals should be a top priority – more so then writing speeding tickets or staking out bars.  More laws are needed for victims, but I feel like the first thing we have to do is demand that the laws we already have in our state are upheld – and trust me they are not being upheld!  Morgan’s murder was premeditated by a person with a criminal history that is a con man and a sociopath so there are people that try to protect him, do alibis for him, that are too afraid of him to come forward and give up the information that they have on him…but don’t worry because some people have been brave enough to come forward, and I feel like there are more that will be coming forward very soon now.  The truth will not stay covered up for long.


January 3, 4, 5, 2012 – Day 33, 34, and 35 of Morgan’s investigation – what to do next?


January 3, 2012 (over a year ago) was a quiet day.  Morgan’s older sister and her husband left and Steve and I were finally all alone in the house.  We drove over to the college to drop off another picture of Morgan that Gary in the Theatre Department wanted to use in their glass case along with the information about the scholarship program that we had set up in Morgan’s name.  So many more things are to be realized in the next few months, but on this day we have no way of knowing this.  I have a strong feeling, not coming from my mind, but instead it is emanating from my soul…that at this time it is for me and me alone to follow the path I have been shown, I know my soulmate Steve will join me sometime down that path, but for right now I need to start following the path by myself, because he is suffering so much over Morgan that he can not focus.  I can feel what Morgan needs me to do for her, and that is exactly what I will do.  I need to get away from this house, and this horrible neighborhood so I can think and feel again…from that thinking, and talking to close friends and relatives, will come a much clearer path – this much I do know.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012 – nothing notable happened – it was extremely, and deathly quiet today.

Thursday, January 05, 2012 – I spoke with Dr. Tracy Simms today, Morgan’s OB/GYN.  This is the first time I have actually spoken with Dr. Simms since Morgan died.  Morgan and I both went to see Dr. Simms for our Annual exams on Wednesday, November 30th in Grand Junction (she was the last doctor to see Morgan 36 hours before she was killed on Thursday night, December 1st, she died sometime before 6:00 am Friday morning, December 2nd when I found her).  I saw Dr. Simms before Morgan, for my appointment and asked that she might take a look at Morgan, because Morgan looked so exhausted and pale.  Toni explained to Tracy about the stalker, and everything that had happened over the last 4 months, and she said she would talk to Morgan.

Tracy said she did talk to Morgan on Wednesday, November 30th that same day, and suggested that maybe she could give her a prescription for an anti-depressant to help her feel better, or possibly something to help her sleep.  Tracy said Morgan told her that she was not depressed at all, she was just very stressed out over the stalker, and medication wouldn’t help, and she did not need or want a prescription.  She also said Morgan expressed that she felt like things were moving in a positive direction (as far as the investigation), and was upbeat and hopeful things would be getting better.


Today, the day I am writing this blog is Wednesday, February 27, 2013.  It has been such a long road that Steve and I have traveled since Morgan left this world.  We have met so many wonderful people along the way that want to help get Morgan’s case opened…and all the experts have assured us that it will be opened if we never give up.  And please be assured, we will NEVER give up.

But I do have to keep reminding myself of this quote…in order to keep calm, and not worry about how long this is taking.

“Don’t expect everyone to understand your journey.  Especially if they’ve never had to walk your path!”