Moscow, Idaho — May, 2007, New York Times
The police said Mr. Hamilton had been drinking at a bar with another man until about 10 p.m. Saturday. Then, they believe, he went home and fatally shot his wife in the head before setting off for the courthouse carrying two semiautomatic rifles. Around 11:30 p.m., he opened fire at the building, eventually firing some 125 shots at the courthouse and at the people who responded to the scene.
Mr. Hamilton killed one responder, Officer Lee C. Newbill of the Moscow police. Officer Bill Shields was hit in the leg by bullet fragments as he went to Officer Newbill’s aid. A sheriff’s deputy, Sgt. Brannon Jordan, was shot several times but was not seriously wounded and was expected to leave the hospital on Monday.
Peter Husmann, a 20-year-old mechanical engineering major at the University of Idaho, in Moscow, heard the shootings and rode his bicycle to the scene armed with a .45-caliber pistol, said his father, Sam Husmann. Peter Husmann was shot in the back, fell to the ground, and was then shot in the calf, neck and shoulder, his father said. He was in stable condition on Monday.
After the shootings at the courthouse, Mr. Hamilton entered the First Presbyterian Church, directly across the street. He had worked there as a custodian for American Building Maintenance, which had a contract with the church, and he knew the church’s sexton, Paul Bauer, Chief Duke said.
Moscow, Idaho — August, 2011, ktvb.com
July 14, 2011: UI requested Moscow Police participate in a threat assessment concerning the threatening behavior of Ernesto Bustamante. University investigators met with Benoit to review Bustamante’s response and notify her that they would be interviewing him on July 19. She was asked to stay somewhere other than her apartment. The Moscow Police tried to call Benoit several times, leaving messages. Benoit did not return the phone calls. Police told the university that she wasn’t calling back. The university indicated that Benoit had been referred to Alternatives to Violence of the Palouse and a safety plan had been discussed. The Moscow Police informed the UI that Benoit did not want police involved.
July 22, 2011: University called Benoit to ask her where she would be staying until the start of school. She said she would be in Moscow. They encouraged her to take safety precautions and contact Moscow Police Department if she felt the need.
August 19. She was warned to be vigilant and call police if she had any safety concerns.
August 22, 2011: Katy was shot outside her home at 8:40 p.m.
August 23, 2011: Moscow Police find Ernesto Bustamante dead in a hotel room at the University Inn-Best Western.
Moscow, Idaho — January 10, 2015, ktvb.com
Police say they first responded to a call of a shooting at around 2:30 p.m. at the Northwest Mutual on E. Third Street. Police say the two victims at the first reported shooting were 76-year-old David Trail and 39-year-old Michael Chin of Seattle. Trail, a Moscow businessman, was taken to Pullman Regional Hospital where he was declared dead. Chin was taken to Gritman Medical Center and is currently in critical condition.
Minutes after the first incident, police say a second shooting was reported at an Arby’s restaurant on Peterson Drive. Police say Lee entered the restaurant and asked for the manager. When the manager, 47-year-old Belinda Niebuhr, came forward Lee reportedly opened fire. Niebuhr was declared dead at Gritman Medical Center.
About a mile and a half away from the Arby’s, police say a fourth victim was found dead at a residence in the 400 block of Veatch Street. The fourth victim, 61-year-old Terri Grzebielski, is reportedly the suspect’s adoptive mother. Police say Grzebielski was a physician’s assistant at Moscow Family Medicine.
You may be asking yourself what is the significance of posting these three items about gun violence in one small town in America, so I’ll tell you: These are stories of suicidal rage, mental illness, murder, blood, obsession, fear, and a gun sickness in this country, the “cure” for which seems to be more and more guns — and, consequently, more and more gun violence.
The significance to me is the fact that, in each of the above stories, I knew one of the dead:
Crystal Hamilton died a bloody death by gun violence by the hand of her husband. She was the head custodian at the Latah County Courthouse, and was a lovely young woman. She always had a smile for everyone.
Ernesto Bustamante died a bloody death by gun violence by his own hand, after having become a murderer. He was my psych research professor — my favorite professor — and he was gorgeous, with his long, shiny black hair, devastating smile, and ironic sense of humor. He was an occasional chatting partner in my peer advising office in the psych department, and he murdered a promising young grad student, Katy Benoit.
Yesterday, Terri Grzebielski died a bloody death by gun violence by the hand of her adopted son. She was a physician’s assistant in the University of Idaho Student Health Department, and was my PA for the four years I attended the U of I. She was an amazing woman: Very tall, very thin, full of energy, ready smile, and she truly cared about her patients.
In addition to these people, a childhood friend’s sister was killed with a gun, and her murder was never solved; my former mother-in-law’s boss was murdered by his crazed daughter-in-law; and the husband of a dear friend died as a result of a gun accident.
This is fucking excessive, people! Does everyone know this many people who’ve died by gun violence?
I don’t know the solution to the gun sickness in this country, other than collecting all the guns and melting them into plowshares, but we all know that will never happen. One feasible solution is strict regulations placed on guns and gun owners, but that would take political integrity and honor, and that exists in very small amounts in this country.
I’m sick to death of gun violence in this country, and I’m SO fucking done with “gun rights” being more important than human lives.
This is our daily open thread — Fuck you, trolls.