Kristin Lardner, a 21-year-old met Michael Cartier in 1992. They started dating, they had an argument, and he struck her about the face, knocked her to the ground, kicked her. By the time she stood on her feet and saw that, he was gone. Two motorists stopped by and helped her home. She decided not meet him again.
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But she had a hard time getting rid of him. He called her apartment several times a day and showed up at the liquor store where she worked. He would be alternately violent and tearful, telling her that he did not know why he always hurt the people he loved.
Lardner was now afraid of Cartier. She knew that Cartier was on probation. He was on probation for attacking a woman with a pair of scissors and when she complained, she was told to take her complaint to the District Court. She did that and charged Cartier with domestic abuse. It was strange that the court did not immediately issue a summons for his arrest.
Later on Cartier found Kristin and shot her in the head and face, killing her in broad daylight and then killed himself. After the incident the police investigated and learned that the Brookline District Court had never issued orders for Cartier’s arrest. A friend of his who police that Cartier had spoken to him a few weeks earlier, telling him that he could not live without Kristin and he showed his intention that he was going to kill her. He was described as a man unable to handle rejection, he had always been extremely jealous and unpredictable. It was reported that Cartier experienced abuse as a child.
Stalking is often considered an invisible crime until violence breaks out. When the violence reaches a level where a victim has to go to the police or to the hospital, the victim usually does not talk about being stalked. Stalking affects on a victim’s deepest fears of being hunted, harmed, and killed. Kristin experienced such feelings.
Stalking is rooted in the ancient concept that women are property. By wielding authority over a woman, the stalker is asserting that he want to be part of her life whether she wants it or not.
Stalking takes place at all levels. In the case of Kristin Lardner and Michael Cartier, the stalkings can be traced to domestic problems. When a child grows up home can be a very dangerous place. Most stalkings arise from domestic violence, particularly when the woman attempts to leave. Stalkers move on between the extremes of love and hate. At one moment they show love for their victims with gifts and praise and at some other time they threaten to kill them.
Stalking is a sort of psychological terrorism. Stalker Inflicts terror on the victim is often intended, but it is also sometimes an unintended consequence of the stalker’s desire. It is difficult to understand the intensity of fear felt by victims for their lives. The terror is so intense that it defies our understanding and taxes our ability to empathize with the victim. The stalking victim becomes a captive. The victim rushes from the protective cover of home to work and back. Sometimes the workplace is no refuge from the stalker. Sometimes, if help cannot arrive, the only release is death at the hands of the stalker. Like the fate of Kristin Lardner, who was gunned down in broad daylight.
The best that a stalking victim can hope in current scenario is that the stalker will lose interest or realize that the victim is not interested and direct his or her energies and interests elsewhere.