THE HOMICIDE HIGH FIVE
Murder on the dance floor
1. Big Lurch
West Coast rhymestrel Antron Singleton raised the rap game stakes in 2002 when he was convicted of murdering his 21 year-old roommate Tynisha Ysais and eating parts of her face and lungs while high on PCP. The po-po apparently picked him up wandering aimlessly (also: naked) on a highway, staring blankly at the sky. His lawyer claimed his deranged client had tucked into Ysais after a five-day hallucinogenic binge and subsequent psychotic episode. An insanity plea was rejected, and he was sentenced to life in prison without parole (a similar incident soon found its way into an episode of CSI). Biggie L is currently still serving his life sentence.
2. Spade Cooley
‘The King of Western Swing’, star of his own 50s TV show and a B-Western regular, Cooley killed his wife in 1961 by ‘stomping her to death’ in front of his 14-year-old daughter, (to whom he’d said, “You’re going to watch me kill her, Melody. If you don’t, I’ll kill you, too.”) A coroner’s report noted cigarette burns and trauma to her head, neck and lady parts. The cause of death was internal bleeding from a ruptured aorta. Governor Ronald Reagon gave Cooley a pardon in 1970 and, astonishingly, it soon looked as if he was going to be a major star again. Thankfully, the blessed Furies didn’t think eight years was enough punishment for torturing a woman to death. His last words as a soon-to-be-free man were: “I feel like today is the first day of the rest of my life.” He then keeled over from a heart attack, dead at 59.
3. Corey Miller aka C-Murder
Hey kids: don’t run your mouth off at hip-hop gangsters, no matter how shocking their flow, or you may wind up getting beat on like Rihanna in a loving relationship. On January 12, 2002, rapper Corey ‘C-Murder’ Miller stepped up to the mic at the Platinum Club in Harvey, Louisiana, for a night of high japes. Legend has it Miller, brother of rap mogul ‘Percy P’ and one time financier of R&B singer Monica, apparently is not a fan of constructive criticism – unbeknown to 16 year-old onlooker, fan-boy and freedom of speech believer, Steve Thomas. Even though the reason for the attack is still deemed a mystery by the courts, the word on the scene is that the outspoken teen embarrassed C-Murkle during his performance, resulting in a bloody beatdown and fatal shooting. Trigger-happy Miller was arrested and convicted in 2003 for second-degree murder.
4. Bertrand Cantat
The frontman of Noir Desir and perhaps France’s most famous ever rock star, Cantat was released in 2007 after controversially serving only half of an eight-year sentence he got served for killing his mistress. She died after he punched her repeatedly while “out of control.’” While filming in Lithuania, Marie Trintignant was rushed to hospital with severe injuries after a violent row, in which the suave French frontman admitted having “slapped” her four times. Medical evidence suggests the extremely slight victim had been struck (hard) in the face at least 19 times. The popular French actress died a few days later. Cantat, insisted the fatal blow had been an accident – and was sentenced to eight years in prison for murder with indirect intent.
5. Jim Gordon
Q: Which member of Derek and the Dominoes and co-writer of Layla murdered his mother with a hammer and knife in 1983, believing she was Satan sent from the pits of hell? A: Not Eric Clapton.
By 1980, an increasingly delusional Jim Gordon believed his mother was entirely responsible for the deaths of Paul Lynde and Karen Carpenter. On June 1st, 1983, he called his mother to let her know she was bothering him and he had to kill her. He knocked on his her door two days later. When she opened it, he hit her repeatedly with a hammer – apparently, so she wouldn’t suffer when he stabbed her repeatedly with an 8-inch butcher knife. Thanks, son! He remains incarcerated between the Men’s Colony in San Luis Obispo, Atascadero State Hospital and the local State Mental Corrections facility.