Couple charged in Christmas Eve shootings

SEATTLE: A woman and her boyfriend admitted to methodically gunning down her parents and four other family members in rural Washington on Christmas Eve, according to police affidavits filed in court.

Los Angeles Times

Couple charged in Christmas Eve shootings — The Seattle pair face six charges of aggravated first-degree murder in the deaths of her parents, her brother and his family.

From the Associated Press
December 29, 2007

Michele K. Anderson and Joseph Thomas McEnroe, both 29, confessed to detectives they had shot six members of Anderson’s family, according to court documents….

The LA Times story states that the reason for the murders may never be known.  Nevertheless, a related story in The Australian, also based on an Associated Press report, states:

Michele Anderson and Joe McEnroe, both aged 29, were held without bail after a court appearance yesterday.

The county prosecutor’s office was expected to have a decision regarding charges yesterday.

Mr McEnroe and Ms Anderson shot her parents, Wayne and Judy Anderson, using large-calibre pistols and dragged the bodies to a shed, authorities wrote in the affidavits, which were based on statements the couple gave to authorities. A short time later, the Andersons’ son, Scott, his wife Erica, and children Olivia, 6, and Nathan, 3, arrived for a Christmas Eve visit.

“Knowing that Scott and his family were potential witnesses, Joe and Michele shot them,” sheriff’s detective John Pavlovich wrote.

Ms Anderson told authorities they both shot her parents, brother and sister-in-law, but Mr McEnroe killed the children.

The couple, who had been together for six years, lived in a trailer about 200m from her parents’ house. After the killings, they tried to flee to Canada, court documents said, but returned the following day and were detained.

Mr McEnroe’s attorney said he had waived his right to appear in court yesterday. Michele Anderson’s attorney, public defender George Eppler, said he spoke to her briefly. When asked if she admitted guilt, Mr Eppler said: “We limited our conversation solely to the issue of today’s court appearance.”

The bodies were found by a co-worker of one of the victims who had come to the rural property, which is near the town of Carnation, 40km east of Seattle, because Judy Anderson did not report to work.

Ben Anderson, who said he was the Andersons’ grandson, told reporters outside his grandparents’ property that money could have been a factor in the deaths. “She (Michele Anderson) felt she wasn’t loved enough and everyone didn’t appreciate her, and she was pushed out of everyone’s life,” he said….(Full Story)

It will be interesting to see what spin will be put on Couple charged in Christmas Eve shootings, methodically gunning down her parents and four other family members.  Perhaps the “real” victim turns out to be Michele Anderson, who – having bereaved herself of her parents – will thereby be able to assert that she became a full orphan and avoid a sentence of life in prison without parole.


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