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Domestic violence behind many of Utah's 2012 homicides

Remembering victims: Families, communities faced tragedies throughout year

Published: Tuesday, Jan. 1 2013 11:45 a.m. MST

"Sometimes you can tell them and tell them and it never works," Franich said.

She wishes she had done more but hopes people can learn from her daughter's tragic death and will leave a bad relationship sooner rather than later.

"You never know when you're going to get a call like we got," she said. "This is the kind of thing we think happens to everybody else. You turn on the TV and see it on 'Law and Order.' We're living it. It's hard to wrap your head around it. … I wouldn't wish this on anybody."

• Shantelle Reid was shot and killed in Murray, just two hours after police had checked on her while investigating reports of a fight. She reportedly told officers nothing was wrong. Her boyfriend, Ryan Robinson, is charged with murder.

Jay Reid said his sister had discussed leaving Robinson and moving to St. George. But days before her death, he said, he overheard Robinson allegedly threaten to kill both his sister and whoever helped her leave. Yet family members didn't believe he would go so far.

"I was in shock," Jay Reid said.

Her father, Wallace Reid, said her family had previously talked to her about leaving Robinson after learning about alleged abuse, but she was stubborn.

The Deseret News list of Utah homicides does not include those who were killed by police officers or automobile homicides, which are generally classified separately. The list does include one suicide because it was charged as a homicide after prosecutors say a man provided a gun to a suicidal woman who then shot herself in Emery County. Prosecutors also charged a Bluffdale man with negligent homicide after he handed a loaded rifle to his drunk wife, who then shot herself. He was charged and convicted this year, but the shooting occurred during 2011.

Other deaths

Utahns were also tragically reminded on more than occasion last year that violence has no boundaries. Several incidents that occurred outside of Utah had a profound impact on local residents during 2012: Josh Powell, husband of missing West Valley woman Susan Powell, killed his two sons before taking his own life in an inferno in Washington; 6-year-old Emilie Parker, originally from Ogden, was shot and killed along with 25 of her classmates and teachers, at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

Two teens accused of murdering a fellow West Wendover High School student took a plea deal in Elko, Nev., earlier this year. Toni Fratto was sentenced to at least 18 years  in prison for the death of 16-year-old Micaela "Mickey" Costanzo. Costanzo's violent murder rattled the small Nevada border town of Wendover. A few months later, co-defendant Kody Cree Patten pleaded guilty and avoided a potential death sentence.

The year 2012 was a year that started with the fatal shooting of Ogden police officer Jared Francom as police served a search warrant at an Ogden home. Five other officers were also shot but survived.

In March, the badly beaten body of 15-year-old Anne Kasprzak was found in the Jordan River. Despite two quick arrests, no one has yet been charged with her death.

In June, a parent's worst nightmare came true and a community was left in shock when  a man entered the West Jordan home of Sierra Newbold while the family was asleep and kidnapped, sexually assaulted and killed the 6-year-old girl, police said.

In December, the year ended much like it started for Ogden residents: lining the streets to honor one of their own. A memorial service and funeral were held for 6-year-old Emilie Parker, who had recently moved to Connecticut and became one of the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting.

The tragedy in Newtown was something that affected citizens and law enforcers alike. Salt Lake County Sheriff Jim Winder said so many of his officers were talking about what happened that he was prompted to take action.

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