Sunday, 6 April 2014

Mark Barton - Spree Killer

It seems that the USA is over-run with spree killers running amok in schools and workplaces, and what has become the norm, when their "mission" is over, they take their own lives.  There are a good number of examples like Columbine, Virginia Tech, Dunblane (Scotland) and Hungerford (England).  The huge question that still remains unanswered is why?  The experts or amateurs (like moi) can only speculate.  The case of Mark Barton was another horrendous example of the spree killer.  Barton was born in Stockbridge, Georgia on 2nd April 1955, then his family moved to South Carolina, where he later attended Clemson University, and then went on to University of South Carolina.  He gained a degree in Chemistry.   But a very big indicator as to his subsequent behaviour surfaced; he acquired a drug habit.  Yes, that`s right.  The illicit substances that do nobody any harm.  He became increasingly paranoid and delusional, his work suffered significantly and as a result was fired. He retaliated by sabotaging the company data, for which he earned a spell in prison.

    He had married Debra Spivey and had two children, Matthew & Mychelle.  His paranoia and delusions were still inside his head, leading him to deeply distrust his wife.  He began an affair with a good friend of Debra`s, one Leigh Vandiver.  In 1993, Debra and her mother, Eloise, were found battered to death.  Naturally, the spouse is the immediate suspect, but Police were convinced that Barton was the killer, but they had no evidence in which to arrest him.  Barton received a substantial payout on his wife`s insurance.  In 1995, he married his lover, Leigh, and was working at an investment bank.  1999 saw him losing vast amounts of money on risky deals, including the insurance payout he received earlier, and such results put him under great stress.

    Events turned horrific on July 27th when he battered to death, his wife, Leith, 27.  The next night he battered his children to death; Matthew aged 11 and Mychelle, 8.  He used a hammer.  He left the bodies in their beds with a note, saying he was not responsible for the murders of Debra & Eloise.  He then went into All-Tech Investment Group, drawing two weapons and opening fire.  Five were murdered and some badly wounded.  He then moved on to Momentum Securities and killed four, and wounding others.  He then left, with Police closing in.  He attempted to abduct a young girl, possibly as a hostage, but she managed to escape.  Police cornered him at a gas station, where he shot himself through the head.  His rampage had claimed 12 lives and left 13 with serious wounds.  One man had miraculously survived 5 gunshots, and had actually knocked Barton over and somehow gotten into an elevator.  He now leads a normal life but it took such a long time for him to recover physically and psychologically.

    His deceased victims were Leigh Barton, Matthew Barton, Mychelle Barton, Allen Tenenbaum - 48, Dean Dellawalla - 52, Joe Dessert - 60, Jamshid Havash - 45, Vadewattee Muralidhara - 44, Ed Quinn - 58, Kevin Dials - 38, Russel Brown - 42 & Scott Webb - 30.  What caused him to act this way?  His delusional problems raise pointers.  Everybody else is to blame for your problems, not yourself.  He could have had mental health problems below the surface that just needed a trigger to bring them out.  Drugs certainly do that, leaving it a question of not if but when.  He denied murdering his first wife and her mother.  He certainly had paranoid thoughts about her, he was bedding one of her best friends, and they suffered blunt force trauma, just like Leigh and his children.  A bit coincidental.  I think not.