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  • Writer's pictureRobin Lyons

Ex-boyfriend Seeks Revenge

Workplace romances can be the start of a lifelong marriage. It can also end and make work life uncomfortable for both people. At the time of this true crime, the woman was 31. The man was 24.


She had a degree in biology and criminal justice. He had a degree in cellular and molecular biology. They met at work and dated for three months. She broke up with him.


He wanted to get back together. She didn’t. On one occasion, when he told her he wanted to get back together, and she said no, he got angry and, in public, called her some vulgar names. The next day, he apologized for his behavior.


Four days after his apology, someone entered her home through a window. When she heard a noise and went to see what it was, she came face-to-face with a masked man—he hit her with a stun gun. She fought him, hitting him with whatever she could get her hands on, and then tried to bite his finger off. He fled out the window he’d entered through. She told police she thought it had been her ex-boyfriend.


After the break-in at her place, the ex-boyfriend, knowing the authorities would question him, went to Canada and then flew to Mexico where he lived for one month. Indeed, the authorities had a warrant for his arrest. He returned to the U.S. through a Texas border town and took a bus to Houston, then to Atlanta, ending back in town where his ex-girlfriend lived.


A few weeks after his return, he followed her by securing a cell phone to the undercarriage of her car. On the last day of her life, she was at a restaurant meeting with a book club to discuss a book the members were reading. When she exited the restaurant’s restroom, she came face-to-face with her ex-boyfriend, who had a knife in each hand. He began stabbing her neck and torso. She screamed for help.


Having dinner with his parents and fiancée, a 26-year-old man ran to help the woman. He pulled the ex-boyfriend off the woman. Two other men joined the good Samaritan and held down the ex-boyfriend until law enforcement arrived.


The woman with a promising life ahead of her didn’t survive the attack.


A prosecutor associated with the case said in his opening statement,


“He lost his job, became homeless, and blamed [the victim] for all of his problems.”


With eyewitnesses and camera footage from the restaurant, the ex-boyfriend’s defense hinged on his mental stability. The jury, hearing his case, found him guilty of first-degree murder. A judge sentenced him to life in prison without the possibility of parole.


The ex-boyfriend asked the judge if he had to be present at his sentencing. She told him he didn’t, he could wait in a cell in the courthouse, with the proceedings airing live on the tv in the room. The victim’s family gave emotional impact statements.


The Good Samaritans who ran to help the victim received honors for their bravery. The District Attorney associated with the case said,


“I need to recognize and thank the Good Samaritans who rushed an armed assailant inside a crowded restaurant while trying to save [the victim]. They displayed bravery in a horrific situation.”


Additional information: The victim’s parents asked their state representatives to amend an employment protection law to include contracted workers. After the victim’s attack in her home, she told her employer what had happened, and asked for some time off. Two days later, they ended her contract. At that time, only full-time employees had accommodations for employees experiencing abusive behavior—contracted employees did not. They’ve asked for this amendment every year since they lost their daughter in 2020.



Source: Worcester County District Attorney, CBS News, Law & Crime, MassLive, Boston25 News

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