Thursday, May 21, 2009

Tori STAFFORD - the second guessing begins.

Arrests of a 28 yrs old man Micheal Rafferty and his 18 yr old girlfriend, Terri-Lynne McClintic as suspects in the abduction and murder of 8yr old Victoria "Tori" STAFFORD were all over the news tonight.  It was nonetheless a very sad and  shocking development.  Police were very quiet on details and apparently no body has been found yet - so it is not exactly clear what kind of evidence led to the Police to take lay charges and arrest the pair.   Presumably (I hope!) someone made a confession or some  damming evidence was found that demanded action. 

Prepare now for the mortification.  And why not?  The life a young child has been snuffed out.   However, are readers prepared to vilify the women in this tragedy?  The Toronto Star with a keen sense of the public's desire to make sense of the senseless is pumping up the tawdry angles, with these articles about McClintic's "stripper" single mom and Rafferty's "infidelities" ("Life of bars, cars and women" which as far as I can tell occurred when I would think he was just learning to shave, 10yrs ago!)  

However I maintain that such superficial accounts are useless.    The understate the complexity's of the families involved.   But a recurring theme is they are ALL BROKEN FAMILIES, Tori STAFFORD's included.  Here are some excerpts from "Terri-Lynne McClintic from a broken home".
  • Terri-Lynne McClintic, 18, accused of being the mysterious woman in the white puffy coat who lured Tori Stafford, 8, to her death, moved back to Woodstock three years ago with her mother, Carol, according to her grandmother, Nancy McClintic, and her adoptive father, Rob McClintic.
  • Her mother (Carol) was a stripper, her adoptive father (Rob) a long-distance trucker who last saw his daughter when she was about 6 years old. [Ed: Terri-Lynne was 6 in 1997. ]
  • The last time Rob saw his adopted daughter (Terri-Lynne) was in court to say goodbye when she was maybe 6 or 7 years old, he said. Over the years, he has continued to pay child support. [Ed: Inconsistent, he just said he last saw her when she was 6 - what dates is he talking about?] 
  • Rob had lived with his wife (Carol) and Terri-Lynne until she was about 2 1/2. "We split up and then (Carol) disappeared with Terri-Lynne." [Ed: That would date Terri-Lynne "disappearance" at September 1993? Please elaborate on "disappeared" - did she move without telling you where she was going, or did you stop trying to find out?  For how long did she "disappear"?   Obviously contact was re-established at some point as Rob confirms he saw her last at age 6 (in 1997). ]
  • Carol had family in Strathroy and Brampton. Her family name was Sandford. She worked as a stripper under the surname Breese.  [Ed: Do we have another verification she was a "stripper" or is that a unfair character assassination?   Is a stripper the same as a cocktail waitress or working in a topless bar? Which is worse?  Yet I wonder at potential double standards.  If Rob was a "Chippendale" - similar to Carol being a stripper - would he have retained sole custody of their child like she did?]
  • But how Terri-Lynne grew up was unknown to him. Except for the support payments, it was as if she no longer existed – until yesterday, when he heard news of her arrest.  [Ed: Rob has stated separately that Terri-Lynne "disappeared"  at age 2 1/2, but he then saw her again when she was 6-7 years old.   What was the exact period he lost contact?  Is it possible he had some information about her location but failed to follow-up?]
  • Terri-Lynne was a sweet girl, said her grandmother (Nancy). She and her husband – who died a decade ago – tried to have some contact with her, but Carol prevented it. "I haven't seen her since she was 7 or 8."   [Ed: By my math Terri-Lynne was 8 when Nancy's husband died (1999) so was it the case she has NOT had contact since then, as that would seem to mean she did have contact before her husband died?]
  • Says Rob McClintic: "She's no blood of mine. This just amazes and sickens me. I can't even run over a squirrel on the highway."  [Ed: This final disavowal is unbecoming.  He is rejecting any responsibility for her turning out "bad".  This girl was his step-daughter for the first 2.5 years of her life.  She was not his daughter through "nature" (genetics)  OR "nurture" (his influence as parent during her early childhood and formative teen years).   Of course with Ontario's "Family Responsibility Office's" services he would have had little choice not to have paid child support.]

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