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Old 03-12-2007, 08:51 PM   #1
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Question The Final Appeal of Darlie Routier

I'll start this off by saying that I saw this story again for the first time in a long time (thanks to crystaldawn) and I was compelled to write down some of my thoughts. I was also inspired by the thread started by DarkDante some time ago that got the ball rolling on discussions about Glen Consagra's final appeal, and my hope is to fuel some discussion about this case to see if we can make some sense out of it. So, without further adieu, let's take a look at the final appeal of Darlie Routier. Here is a brief overview of the case and some of the pertinent facts...

At 2:30 on the morning of June 6th, 1996, Darlie Lynn Routier placed a frantic call to 911 from her home, where she lived with her husband Darin, in an upscale suburb of Dallas, Texas. She told the operator that she and her two sons had been stabbed. When the police and paramedics arrived they found that Darlie's two sons, six year old Devin, and five year old Damon, had been stabbed numerous times. Devin was already dead. Damon was in very critical condition and died en route to the hospital. Darlie had sustained serious cuts to her throat and arms. She required immediate surgery, but survived the attack. After she recovered, Darlie was arrested and charged with the stabbing deaths of her two sons. She was tried, convicted and sentenced to die via lethal injection. She remains on death row. From day one of the investigation, Darlie has proclaimed her innocence.

Darlie told investigators that she and her two sons had fallen asleep while watching TV in the downstairs family room when she suddenly awoke to see a man holding a knife in his hand standing over her. She chased the man through the kitchen and out the backdoor. She claims he dropped the murder weapon, a kitchen knife, just before leaving. She picked up the knife to defend herself in the event the man returned. It was only after this had occurred that Darlie realized she had been injured and began screaming for her husband, who was asleep upstairs with the couple's newborn baby Drake. Darlie's husband told investigators that he did not see the man, and Darlie herself was unable to give a description.

From the start, the police were skeptical of Darlie's account.

- It seemed unlikely that she would have slept through the attack and been unable to remember details of the suspect's appearance.

- The entry point was determined to be a window in the garage. The screen had been slashed and police found a single bleached blond hair on the screen. Although the hair was originally thought to belong to Darlie Routier, DNA testing proved it belonged to one of the investigating officers.

- There was a thick layer of dust on the sill underneath the window that had not been disturbed. It seemed unlikely that an intruder could have entered the window without touching the sill and disturbing the dust.

- Nothing had been stolen from the house.

- There was no blood trail along the route Darlie said the killer had traversed to exit the house.

- Three houses away from the Routier home, police found a single tube sock stained with the blood of the Routier children. Police thought it a red herring and evidence of an amateurish cover-up.

- Darlie Routier allegedly told an investigator that if she did commit the murders, she didn't remember.

- At the trial, a blood spatter expert hired by the prosecution testified that spots of blood found on the back of Darlie Routier's nightshirt were indicative of her stabbing the boys herself, as blood would have been dripping off the knife and onto her back/shoulder as she vigorously withdrew the knife from her son's bodies.

- Darlie Routier’s wounds appeared to be minor and superficial compared to the wounds sustained by the children. A medical expert testified that he believed Routier’s wounds were self inflicted and the crime scene staged.

Based on these and other facts, the prosecution built a story around the premise that Darlie was a vain and materialistic woman. She was stricken with postpartum depression following the birth of her son Drake and she murdered her two sons so that she and her husband could collect $10,000 in life insurance policies. The prosecution solidified their view that Darlie was cold hearted and uncaring by presenting a news video tape showing Darlie and her family having a party at the grave of her deceased sons and even spraying the tombstones with "silly string".

Darlie's defender's (mostly members of her family including her husband and mother as well as her defense counsel) continue to maintain that she was attacked by a unsub and is innocent.

- Darlie's mother maintains that the postpartum depression was short lived and lasted a few weeks. The murders occurred when Darlie's son Drake was eight months old.

- The insurance payouts on the two boys totaled around $10,000. Their burial costs alone were about $13,000.

- The window the intruder allegedly used to gain entrance to the house was a mere 10 inches off the ground. It seems likely that someone could have come in without touching the sill and disturbing the layer of dust.

- The police found two fingerprints at the crime scene along the killer's alleged escape route. Neither could be matched to Darlie or anyone else who was known to be in the house that night.

- Darlie's mother insists that Darlie did not make any incriminating statements to investigators at any time. Curiously, the interview in which Darlie allegedly told an investigator that she "didn't remember" killing her sons was not audio or video recorded.

- Darlie's mother also insists that the police were negligent in their collection of the crime scene evidence, and that the blood spots on the back of Darlie's nightshirt could have ended up there as a result of mishandling by the police.

- Darlie’s defenders pointed out that the injuries Darlie sustained were, in fact, very severe. A wound to her neck came close to splicing a major artery and killing her. One of the jurors later said that if had he been shown better pictures of Darlie’s wounds during the trial he would have voted to acquit her.

- Darlie and her family also point out the news footage (which became known as the “silly string tape”) was shown out of context. The murders occurred three days before Devin’s seventh birthday and Darlie insists that she and her family wanted to celebrate anyway as they had already purchased gifts and did not want to upset or scare the young friends of the two boys. The two children loved "silly string" and the Routiers thought it an appropriate way to celebrate.

- Finally, Darlie's supporters point out that there were a number of then unsolved home invasion robberies and sexual assaults committed around the same time as the attack. The perpetrator was known to wear tube socks on his hands and attack his victims with knives procured from the kitchen. The Rowlett police said they were unaware of this connection.

Darlie is still on death row today, her execution delayed by appeals. As an interesting postscript, more than 30,000 errors were found in the transcripts of Darlie’s trial. Her supporters hope that this will establish grounds for a new trial and the reversal of the verdict and death sentence.

So, what do you all think? Did Darlie murder her boys?
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Old 03-12-2007, 10:10 PM   #2
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Crystaldawn also sent me a copy of this, still in the mail and thanks, now I can't wait!!

I have seen The New Detectives (that typically goes into greater detail than UM) version of this case many years ago and based on that I agreed that Darlene should be put to death and is guilty here.

I guess I'll see what I think next week sometime. What do you think by the way?
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Old 03-12-2007, 10:26 PM   #3
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I think Darlie Routier is guilty as hell. While I note there are several somewhat creepy similarities in the Routier case and the case of Jeffrey MacDonald, I feel the Routier case does not hold up nearly as well as Dr. MacDonald's claims of innocence.

I feel in this case there is enough evidence to get a guilty verdict and to have that verdict hold up on appeal. I just don't see strong enough evidence here to compel me to believe in Routier's innocence.
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Old 03-12-2007, 11:17 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Space Invaderz
What do you think by the way?
I didn't want to express my thoughts this early in the thread, but I guess I will. After watching the segment again today (because my girlfriend wanted to see it) there is little doubt in my mind that Darlie Routier is guilty.

I'm nagged by a couple things, but the most obvious is this: why would someone walk into a house in the middle of the night and stab three people, two of them children, for no apparent reason? There was a history of sexual assault/robbery in the area. Fair enough. But neither happened here. Nothing was taken from the home. No one was sexually assaulted to my knowledge. Also, why would someone walk in to a house intent on committing a sex crime or a robbery totally unarmed? I suppose we could say it is reasonable to assume that most houses have a kitchen, and therefore most houses have a kitchen knife. A kitchen knife could be used as a weapon. But, committing a robbery or sexual assault assumes that there will be a confrontation between the victim and the offender. Therefore, I think it is fair to postulate that brining a weapon of some type would be not only be high on an offender's list of priorities, but just plain common sense. Aside from this, I think we must look at the big picture here. When you factor everything together such as the unlikely robbery/rape scenario, the suspect crime scene evidence, and the mother's mental state at the time, does her story really make sense?

I think the problem is that a certain part of our own psyche NEEDS to believe that Darlie Routier is innocent despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary. It is easy to believe she is innocent, for not believing is accepting and admitting to ourselves the sad and tragic reality that yes, some parents do commit horrific crimes such as killing their children. Diane Downs, Susan Smith and Andrea Yates are proof of this.

I think it's also easy to ask questions like "why did she do it" or "what was the motive" but the sad truth is that there may not necessarily be one for us to comprehend. Only Darlie Routier could answer that.
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Old 03-12-2007, 11:37 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by justins5256
I didn't want to express my thoughts this early in the thread, but I guess I will.
Oh no you gotta get it out there early sir!! Then Kadrmas can try and take you to task on everything, clinging to a small piece of doubt that'll be enough to set them free ... I hope he gets a chuckle

On a more serious note, what you said makes alot of sense to me. Again, can't wait to my DVD arrives~~
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Old 03-13-2007, 01:03 AM   #6
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I think she's guilty. But admittedly I have almost zero interest in this case and only know the basic details. justin probably made great points in his posts but the subject won't even allow me to do more than skim them. It's like DarkDante in another case, saying it may be popular but for whatever reason he barely cares about it.

Stupid reasoning, but most likely it's because I never cared for ditsy buxom blondes. If Darlie looked like Phoebe Cates or Janine Turner or Dorothy Hamill, or a 21st century version of any of them, I'd probably have great attention span and perhaps even scramble for a reason to pretend she's innocent.
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Old 03-19-2007, 07:31 PM   #7
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What about a ditzy buxom brunette who bears a striking resemblance to Christina Ricci?

Oh, wait. We've had this discussion.

As for the Routier case... I agree with DarkDante, who mentioned that Darlie's alibi doesn't hold up as well as MacDonald's. I'm still on the fence, but I'm swaying towards guilty, mainly because there is a lack of evidence that could acquit her. I feel that in MacDonald's case there is a question of fact. In Darlie's case, the same type of questions are lacking.
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Old 03-20-2007, 07:12 AM   #8
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I saw this on a show in Australia called TrueCSI. Don't know if it's got a different name over there but they said that her husband was given a lie detecter test and he failed it horribly. He was asked if he set the whole thing up for some reason or another.

Did anybody know this?

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Old 03-20-2007, 04:29 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by LooksLikeCRicci
What about a ditzy buxom brunette who bears a striking resemblance to Christina Ricci?
I'll take two of those, please.

On topic, I am completely split 50/50 on this case. Always have been.
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Old 03-21-2007, 07:44 AM   #10
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i am convinced Darlie Routier is 100% guilty of killing her boys. The fornsic evidence points to her and she wanted her kids dead since she was giggling when she sprayed Sillystring all over her boy's grave. They should execute her. Heck with her appeals!
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Old 03-23-2007, 07:34 AM   #11
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My DVD arrived the other day and I was finally able to catch up with this case. If I hadn't seen The New Detectives cover this case in greater detail I may have leaned towards Darlie being innocent but I still think she is guilty and she might not have acted alone.

I can see Darlie's knife wounds as being classed "self-inflicited", in the video of her at the grave she didnt seem bothered by the cuts, nor where they bandaged nor even look stitched up but what about the pics of Darlie's bruises? How did they get there? Even Darlie herself didn't exactly say how the bruises got there. Did she repeatedly smash her arms on some furniture? My thought was their must have been a second person involved, whether it was the unknown man she claimed she woke up as he was standing over her or her husband in on the crime too?

The other thing I can't quite explain is the tube sock, how did it get there because there wasn't enough time for Darlie to commit the crime, stage the scene, cut herself and place the sock a couple of blocks away..or could it have been placed there some time earlier, before the murderers and from some other injury her boys might have had? The doctors stated that one of her boys could only survive 9 minutes tops after receiving those knife injuries.

But from what I remember about TND version, the blood spatter evidence proves that Darlie's sons blood on the back of her shirt came from the cast off from the knife as Darlie was stabbing them.

Darlie's lake of emotion seemingly dancing and spraying silly string over her sons graves. I'm not a parent but I would think it would be unimagineable for a parent to be in such a joyious mood only days after two of her sons have been stabbed to death?

There was no real phyical evidence of an intruder in the house. A glass that was found broken in the kitchen was proven to be broken after Darlie (by her own admission) travelled through the kitchen.
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Old 04-06-2007, 09:48 AM   #12
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They did not show Darlie crying at her sons funeral in the video.They need to look at her husband Darin.I read this story a little bit.Darin was outside when the police arrived?Who's blood was on Darins jeans and a good reason why it was there?Darin's hair was on a murder weapon?they say the knife used in the death of Devon was not the same one used on Damon and Darlie and none of his blood was found on the weapon used. According to the defense, this second knife was never recovered. The experts for the prosecution, including the medical examiner for the county, refute this claim by the defense saying that the knife presented could have easily made the wounds to all three involved and did not eliminate this knife as the murder weapon for either boys.
I say One of her son's blood was not on the murder weapon?I feel very strongly his blood would have been on the knife.why two knives?she was accused of killing only one of her sons.who killed her other son?this is what they need to go back and find out.I don't think the prosecution had a good case.she needs a new trial.Is she getting a new trial?


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Old 04-06-2007, 02:19 PM   #13
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This case is going to premeire on the Court TV show The Investigators tonight. I thought she was innocent until I saw the case featured on Forensic Files or The New Detectives. I forget which, but the physical evidence (where the blood was found and where items in the kitchen were knocked over) suggests that she did it.
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Old 04-06-2007, 09:03 PM   #14
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Thought people might be interested in this:

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Old 04-07-2007, 02:34 PM   #15
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