On TV's Dateline:
Sandra Melgar convicted of murder in husband's brutal stabbing
On TV's Dateline:
I used to follow Dr Grande, but he’s become increasingly sensationalist over the last year or so, chasing views and subscribers. But I will watch this video.
The prosecutor suggested that her motive was that she “had religious beliefs that are inconsistent with divorce”.
Dr Grande said in response to this suggestion, “so we are supposed to believe that her religion didn’t allow divorce, but it did allow murder?” In a tone that suggested it was a ridiculous idea.
Dr Grande misses the point here. JWs can’t get a “scriptural divorce” without adultery, so the prosecution was presumably suggesting that JW religious beliefs meant that the woman murdered her husband to escape the marriage with the possibility of finding a new partner under JW policies. (If she had got away with the murder, that is) This theory at least seems possible and relies on a correct understanding of JW beliefs and policies. The prosecution apparently had a better understanding of JW beliefs and possible warped motivation in this scenario than Dr Grande does.
Anyway, it seems doubtful she was guilty, on the basis of the other evidence, or lack of it, in my opinion.
50 stabs and being bludgeoned is a sign of passion, not in a hurry to steal stuff. There is presumably more such as fingerprints, blood splatter evidence etc - the religious stuff surely didn't help but it is not enough to convict beyond reasonable doubt.
After looking into it some more:
- The husband was found stabbed many times and bludgeoned and naked, then he was tied up post-mortem and put in the closet.
- She gave many suspects and then said she doesn't suspect any of them, including renters, tailgaters
- She said she had a seizure during the event, but no evidence of seizures in her medical history. She also said she was hit in the head and lost consciousness. There was no evidence she was hit in the head or bumped her head or had a seizure and refused further medical exam.
- No signs of forced entry, nothing missing, drawers were neatly arranged, not dumped
- There was evidence she cleaned her hands and blood with a strong detergent, so strong it clouded (chemically stripped the upper layer of) her nails and gave what seems like chemical burns
- There were witnesses that say she had low disregard for life because of the resurrection promise (they're sleeping and will come back)
- She was slow to answer their questions, and her answers tended to be evasive. She was covering her face and avoiding eye contact. And she was not displaying much emotion. Even when she sounded as though she were crying, she did not have any tears.
- She had bruising on her arms and said that she was frequently bruised due to medication, this story kept changing making investigators think she was actually being abused frequently by her husband.
- The investigators recreated the scene, how she could've bound herself up and locked herself in the bathroom with a pillow sham and they recovered all the pieces necessary, including a torn pillow sham in the bathroom, from the scene.
If she were innocent, being a JW sure screwed her over, 30 years in an unhappy, abusive, marriage, believing in the resurrection, the issues with divorce and disfellowshipping all contributed to her conviction based on the evidence.
You can read the details here, but it seems awfully suspicious