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A Body in the Backyard!
[ Non-fiction : Crime/ ]

A few days ago law enforcement arrested a man by the name of Keith Turner on suspicion of murdering his wife, Toby. Toby had “disappeared” some two years ago.
After investigating the disappearance, evidently law enforcement came up with enough information to justify a search warrant and searched Mr. Turner’s home, including and especially his backyard. And, of course, law enforcement evidently felt justified to arrest Mr. Turner for suspicion of murder.

According to new reports, human remains were found in the backyard. Whether or not those remains are those of his missing wife, Toby, remains to be seen.

The thing that makes me sit up and take notice is this: I’ve had dinner three times with Mr. Turner. Did I sit down to dinner with a cold, calculating murderer?

The first time I sat down with Mr. Turner to have dinner with him, and his wife Toby, was a few years ago. We had a lovely dinner in the Old Town area of San Diego. The second time was at his house, the same house where he may have killed his wife, Toby.

The third time, well, he visited me at my own place of residence, only that time his wife wasn’t with him. I also, as I recall, attended a wedding of one of his sister-in-laws, at Mr. Turner’s residence.

I can’t say we were ever friends. I met him through one of his relatives. I am very close to three of his relatives. I can say that he appeared to be an extraordinarily unlucky individual, when his history was related to me by the relatives.

I learned, from his relatives, that his first wife had died unexpectedly and was informed that she had been found in the family garage, an apparent suicide. Evidently the death was ruled a suicide by the local medical examiner. I also learned, from the same relatives, that an infant son had died unexpectedly and that the death of the son had been ruled a probable SIDS death. I am not sure that all of his family members were completely satisfied by the official rulings on either of those deaths.

If his wife, Toby, is indeed the one that was buried in his backyard, or is otherwise found to be deceased, I think clearly Mr. Turner amounts to one of the most unlucky people on the planet. An infant son, a first wife and his second wife—all dead (again, should Toby be determined to no longer be among the living.)

My impressions of Mr. Turner, from the limited time I spent with him, were not particularly good. He seemed a bit too close to and dependent upon his mother. He had an interest in science fiction, an interest I share, but he concentrated on “alternate reality” style science fiction and now, in retrospect, it may be true to state that he lived in his own alternate reality, but I guess that will be revealed in time via the justice system.

He also seemed quite interested in firearms, having a very large collection of the same. He was also very interested in civil war reenactments and enjoyed the war related play acting that such pursuits provide. Fantasy seemed to be an outlet for him.

It will be up to the legal system to determine whether or not he is guilty of murdering his wife. His neighbors have been heard on television interviews stating that when he was asked over the last two years where his wife had disappeared to, he stated that she simply had “abandoned the family and gone away.”

He is a smallish man, maybe about five and a half feet tall. The last time I saw him he was very skinny. I saw footage of him being arrested- he’s beefed up quite a bit since I last saw him. It doesn’t look like he’s been missing any meals recently.

The justice system will have to decide his guilt or innocence. But for me, I am left with a very uncomfortable feeling that murderers, may, just may be, anyone…a person you golf with, or a person you work with, or even a person you sometimes sit down with over a meal and discuss science fiction with.

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