Some of you who are still reading this blog after this year’s upheaval may remember that I sometimes like to write about true crime. Every once in awhile, I write about something that hits close to home for me, or for other people. I’ve gotten comments from people who are actually involved in some of the situations I’ve written about or true crime books I’ve reviewed.
True crime has struck eerily close to home for me this week. This isn’t to mean it’s touched me personally, only that a crime occurred in Germany and it caused a blip in our routine. Of course, for the people involved, it definitely wasn’t just a “blip”.
My dog, Zane, has been kind of off his food this week. He has a slightly swollen lymph node under his jaw. At first, I was worried about cancer, because I ALWAYS worry about cancer when it comes to my dogs. But then I noticed that he otherwise looks bright and perky, and he does want to eat. In fact, last night, we were eating duck and he was loudly demanding that we share it with him. But he doesn’t want to finish his own food, especially the dry pellets he gets. He will eventually eat it, but he doesn’t seem to enjoy it. Edited to add: Looks like my initial hunch was right and Zane probably does have cancer. 🙁
I took a look in his mouth and he is definitely due for a dental cleaning. He’s got lots of tartar build up and his gum line is red. Last year, our vet near Stuttgart removed a small tumor from his mouth. It’s possible he has a new one. So I asked Bill to stop by our vet to make an appointment for Zane to be seen. If the vet agrees with me that it’s time for a dental, we’ll try to get both dogs done, but after the first, because August has been a very expensive month! I’m sure the vet will agree, because Zane obviously could use a cleaning. Hopefully, that’s the only thing troubling him.
Anyway, on Wednesday, Bill stopped by our vet’s office and found a long note posted on the door. Naturally, it was in German. Bill does speak some basic German, but he’s nowhere near fluent. He took a photo of the note on the door, getting the gist that they were making some policy changes, mainly due to the huge number of clients they have. He says they will offer Sunday hours and won’t take on any new clients. He also got the gist that there had been a death at the practice, so that was why they were closed Wednesday night.
My German friend, Susanne, then shared with me a news story about a 22 year old woman who was found lying in a pool of blood near a horse paddock. The woman, who wasn’t named in the original post, had been riding her horse and had only just moved to Hofheim within the past few weeks.
The next day, Susanne shared another article. In that article, the woman was identified as Lea S., and she worked at our vet’s office. Her murder was the reason the practice was closed on Wednesday, as she was killed on Tuesday night. It says on the vet’s page that she had been working there since 2017, but I guess she only just moved to Wiesbaden… or, more specifically, the area where we live, which is on the outskirts of Wiesbaden proper. Lea loved horses and spent her free time with them. I grew up with horses myself, so I understand the love very well.
On a different note, I think it’s interesting that the German press doesn’t identify people like the American press does. Even people who are accused of crimes don’t get identified by their full names. They are usually photographed holding up a folder over their faces and their last names are usually not revealed.
In the next article about the murder, we learned that the perpetrator is a 55 year old man. He has already lawyered up and turned himself in to the police. Supposedly, he and Lea were romantically involved, and perhaps she tried to break up with him. He responded by shooting her.
Violent crime is not that common in Germany. It does happen here, but not like it does in the United States. It’s much more difficult for private citizens to have access to weapons here than it is in the United States. Frankly, I like that about Germany. I think it’s sensible. But just because there aren’t as many guns here, that doesn’t mean violent crime doesn’t happen. And even without weapons, people do get murdered here… but by less violent methods. For example, a few months ago, I wrote about a man who had killed people by poisoning their food, and another man who had passively aggressively booby trapped the homes of people he didn’t like.
I am not that familiar with our new vets because I haven’t been the one taking the dogs to them. When we lived near Stuttgart, I got to know our old vets very well, because I took Zane in monthly for allergy shots. Our new vets have a much bigger and busier practice, and we have only visited them a few times. Most of the time, Bill has gone alone. I can’t even imagine how our old vets would have reacted if one of their staff members had been murdered. They’d probably shut down for a week.
I think Lea’s story is very sad. She was a beautiful young woman with her whole life ahead of her. She obviously had passions in life, and so many more things to do before she made her untimely exit. My heart goes out to her family, friends, and co-workers who had experienced such a tremendous loss. I’m sure we would have gotten to know and like her, if we’d had the opportunity.
Hopefully, we’ll get to the bottom of Zane’s issues soon. He just begged me for his morning treat, but still doesn’t want to finish his breakfast.
Edited to add: Since I wrote this post, more information has come out. The ex lover who turned himself in is claiming innocence and says he only turned himself in because he knew the police would confront him. Also, witnesses have said they saw a young man, and the ex lover is 55 years old. However, the prosecutor doesn’t believe that the ex lover had nothing to do with the crime. Perhaps it was murder for hire?