A letter written by Jeff’s father:Initially, of course, I couldn’t believe that it was really Jeff who had done the things...
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A letter written by jeff's father

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A letter written by jeff's father

  1. 1. A letter written by Jeff’s father:Initially, of course, I couldn’t believe that it was really Jeff who had done the things thepolice had accused him of. How could anyone believe that his son do such things? I hadbeen in the actual places where they said he had done them. I had been in rooms andbasements which at other moments, according to the police, had been nothing less than aslaughterhouse. I had looked in my son’s refrigerator and seen only a scattering of milkcartons and soda cans. I had leaned casually on the black table they claimed my son hadused both as a dissecting table and a bizarre satanic altar. How was it possible that all ofthis had been hidden from me – not only the horrible physical evidence of my son’scrimes, but the dark nature of the man who had committed them, this child I had held inmy arms a thousand times, and whose face, when I glimpsed it in the newspapers, lookedlike mine? If the police had told me that my son was dead, I would have thoughtdifferently about him. If they’d told me that a strange man had lured him to a seedyapartment, and a few minutes later, drugged, strangled, then sexually assaulted andmutilated his dead body – in other words, if they’d told me the same horrible things thatthey had to tell so many other fathers and mothers in July of 1991 – then I would havedone what they have done. I would have mourned my son and demanded that the manwho’d killed him be profoundly punished. If not executed, then separated forever fromthe rest of us. After that, I would have tried to think of my son warmly. I would, I hope,have visited his grave from time to time, spoken of him with loss and affection, continued,as much as possible, to be the custodian of his memory. But I wasn’t told what theseother mothers and fathers were told, that their sons were dead at the hands of amurderer: Instead, I was told that my son was the one who had murdered their sons.

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