At some point last year, I happened to walk by the kitchen TV when Dateline was on, most likely because the channel had been left playing after someone finished watching something else. The story was about the abduction of Amber Dubois and the search that went on for thirteen months after the incident. Having a sort of morbid fascination with murder cases, I sat down and started to watch it. About three fourths of the way through my dad came in and turned it off saying it was too depressing. I went off without comment, but I've wondered ever since how the story ended.
Today I remembered that I never found out what happened and read this article against my better judgment. Aside from being a bit freaked out, the main thing that stuck out to me and made me wonder was the part on page five where the girl's mother interviews the murderer on how and why he did what he did (if you didn't read it, he saw her on the street, had an impulse to kidnap her, threatened her with a knife to get her into his car, drove her off to some random location, raped her, then stabbed her to death).
For whatever reason, I found myself on the point of crying as he told what was basically his life story - that he had always been impulsively violent, he did horrible things to people. He said he hated the things he did, but he kept doing them anyway. Or, here, gosh, I can't get this across the way I want to. This is what he said:
"I've done things to my family members, I've hurt them, I've hit people, I've beaten people, I've done a lot of things that I regret in my life and I wish I could take back. But I still do the same things over and over again. I'm on meds right now and you can see the anger in my eyes just trying to talk… I get angry, I blow up, I explode. I don't know how to describe it. I feel like I'm out of control with myself at times and I go and I do things that I regret for the rest of my life."
I don't know if you've ever felt like that, but I have. I've done things purposefully to hurt people I love even though I know that it's wrong and I know I don't really want to hurt them, and even as I'm telling myself it's a horrible thing to do, I can't seem to stop it. Does that make me exactly like this guy? No. Does that make what he did excusable? No. But it does make me think.
After giving some excerpts from the interview, the article goes on to adapt a skeptical tone towards the fact that the man actually felt remorse. The mother voices her opinion that he is a sociopath.
But from what I've read about sociopaths, they typically aren't aware that they have a problem, which this criminal is.
Curious, I looked through the comments to see if anyone said anything similar. All of them either didn't mention the murderer or said something along the lines of, "He's worthless and deserves to die a horrible death."
I think that the reason I became a bit emotional as I was reading what this man said was because it seems to be something I can relate to, the feeling of being trapped in sin. I think being trapped in sin is a very real thing. Yet all these people and the mother of the girl who is killed and her family and her media all deny having any similarity to him. I don't know, I just think it's incredibly sad. That we always condemn these people for what they do, yet never think to do anything about it, never think that they might be helpless victim to everything they do. Can't we try and help them?
As a parting comment, I want to point out another part of the murderer's story. He said that as he drove Amber to the site where he would eventually rape and kill her, she was not crying or desperately trying to escape. She was sitting there relentlessly asking him, "Why are you doing this? What's wrong? Why are you doing this?"
What would you ask?