This is truly a sad and tragic case… Everything about this case is sad, for many reasons. We cannot possible possibly cover all of the aspects of the case, but we will touch on some important points. We will post a case study here. The special post at the other end of that link is simply information about the case. Worth a read to help understand what we are talking about below.
At 22 years of age, Christina Grimmie was shot and killed after a performing in Orlando. Christina was the singer for a band called Before you exit, and was performing at a venue in Orlando, Florida. She was doing a “meet & greet” after the show and signing autographs when her killer ( I refuse to use the name of such a low life, only feeding their fame (unless absolutely necessary for documentation)) approached her and shot and killed her; was subsequently tackled by Christina’s brother, then shot himself.
We are going to look at and discuss two very important, yet not discussed concerns. Media outlets like to cover the murder aspect, because that is “sensational”. We are going to look at the stalking, and the stalker himself; in turn the predictability of the event, or at least the escalation of stalking.
Stalking is a serious issue and should not be taken lightly. Stalking can be described as: The unwanted and obsessive attention directed from one subject to another. This may come in the form of letters, emails, social media, personal interaction, phone calls, etc. Attention can take most any form.
In some cases however, the victim of stalking may be entirely unaware of the stalkers actions. Such is the case with Christina. There is no reason to believe that there was ever any contact between her and her murderer, prior the the night of her murder.
This is the most dangerous kind of stalker as the victim has no idea of the stalkers existence. Without knowing the stalker exists, a victim (or potential victim) cannot address the threat appropriately and specifically. Christina could not have taken specific precautions due to her ignorance of her stalkers existence.
Murder or at the least, violent escalation is almost always predictable to some degree. Contrary to popular belief, no one “just snaps”. When you hear about a mass murder in the news, everyone who knew them says: “he was really quiet and kept to himself, never bothered anyone” so on and so on. Trust me when I say, those people do not actually know, and certainly are not very aware of the perpetrators actions and life. I can make certain predictions in the case of the murder, without actually knowing certain things. For example: He lived at home with his father and brother; neither of which had any idea of his obsession with Christina. Prediction base on that information: He had a troubled upbringing and life early on, likely in critical development stage(s). He had a less that good relationship with his family, did not communicate or talk, and certainly did not spend any quality time them. He was secluded and kept to himself, private, and reclusive. That is just a taste of predictability based on past patterns, psychology, and other factors. This is not impossible.
Stalkers rarely escalate from not contact, to murder. Typically there are additional point and approaches; like climbing a ladder, the stalker tests his bravery and the victims response before going right to murder at the point of first contact.
In this case, the murderer was displayed a combination of stalker types: Delusional and Celebrity. He believed he and Christina were “soul mates”, and wanted a relationship with her. He learned of her due to her success on YouTube and her time on the television competition The Voice. He was socially awkward and an introvert.
This case is a tragic one, not only because a young woman was killed, but because it was preventable and detectable. We must not allow her death and unique story to go to waste. Let us learn from this so we can stop it from happening again, and again…Sadly, the police are the only ones investigating the killer and he destroyed or locked his digital equipment. So we will know very little about him, to help us better understand killers. Orlando Police Department has close their investigation.
What can we learn?
- Violent crime is predictable and preventable in almost every case
- Stalking is a serious issue and should not be shrugged off, it needs to be addressed as soon as possible!
- We need to learn what stalking is and to recognize the signs so we can stop it before it gains traction
- Sometimes, in rare cases, there is nothing we can do to address a specific threat because we simply do not know the threat exists.
- We can however, learn signs and educate ourselves on recognizing threats and potential threats.