It is gruesome.
It is grisly.
It’s as bad as it gets.
It’s a rare crime called fetal abduction and it still causes a highly respected former top Chicago member of the police brass, who asked to remain anonymous, to wince reading about the murder of nine-months-pregnant Marlen Ochoa-Lopez, whose body was found Tuesday after her baby had been ripped from her womb with a butcher’s knife.
“The most terrible thing about fetal abduction is that it deals with the sacred,” said the former top cop, who cited 16 additional cases throughout the U.S. beginning in 1974 in Philadelphia, Pa., where a crude, criminal cesarean section was induced by violence.
“I can’t think of a more heinous crime,” he added.
“It’s because it involves a mother and her baby. And one has to die in order to steal the other,” citing the 1995 murder of Deborah Evans in Addison, whose baby was cut through her womb with scissors to give to a friend of the baby’s father.
“It is almost beyond reality the pain these mothers endured knowing what was happening ... and the knowledge later that not only were butcher knives used, but scissors, car keys and box cutters to extract babies from the womb,” he said.
“These people have no regard for the mother’s life ... they are treated like a piece of meat. What kind of life will these children have being raised by monsters who would do this ... or are taken by people who agreed with murder in order to get these babies?
“It’s evil. Just plain evil.
“Families suffer beyond belief. But policemen and women who witness this don’t come away without being affected by it.
“It builds up. It just builds up. It can become one traumatic incident after another ... and it adds up over time. One thing this week. Another thing next week.
“You realize you lose trust in people — and that there is almost nothing people won’t do. Fortunately the police department now has help for handling traumatic stress disorder,” he said.
“But you never really forget. Life just seems to have gotten crueler. Our society more violent. I will never forget the rape and murder of an 11-year-old Chicago girl, whose body was left in a garage on a 95-degree day.”
“Violence keeps growing,” he said
But the arithmetic just never seems to add up.
A sad note . . .
Syndicated columnist Georgie Anne “Gigi” Geyer was already a legend when I became a reporter at the Chicago Tribune 50 years ago.
Over the years we became good friends, knowing what it was like to be a female reporter in a newspaper world ruled by men.
Gigi’s step into foreign reporting was as moxie as it gets, basically sending herself on a journalistic journey around the world.
And the world listened.
I can’t say enough about this wonderful woman. She left behind a big pen to fill.
$$$ . . .
State Treasurer Michael Frerichs, who returns “forgotten money,” aka forgotten bank accounts and insurance money to unbeknownst owners, not only returned a record-breaking $200 million to Illinois citizens during the past 10 months — but tells Sneed he still has more than $3 billion in unclaimed property waiting for others.
Sneedlings . . .
Yum! Looks like the Five O’clock Steakhouse in Milwaukee has been attracting signature guests lately; Donald Trump Jr. showed up after a recent bout of ice fishing, and NBA legend Charles Barkley hit the eatery Tuesday night. . . . I spy: Former Gov. Pat Quinn spotted recently at Harry Caray’s on Kinzie. . . . Saturday’s birthdays: Tina Fey, 49; George Strait, 67; and Reggie Jackson, 73. . . . Sunday’s birthdays: Andrea Pirlo, 40; Kevin Garnett, 43; and Grace Jones, 71.