GA GA - Shirley, 87, & Russell Dermond, 88, Putnam Co, 2 May 2014 - #13

fred&edna

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I wish we could hear a bit more from Landen Wilson. How much blood was on RD's feet? Were any footprints (bare feet or with shoes/boots) visible in crime scene photos? Also, I have additional questions... Is it likely the instrument used for decapitation was already in the Dermond home (not carried to the scene by perps)? Is it typical for fishermen to have 30 lb cinder blocks in their boats? Are uncolored concrete cinder blocks more common than red... is the red color just a by-product of materials used in forming the blocks? I'm still questioning how much knowledge a person needs to make such a single strike "clean" decapitation... specifically with regard to the human spinal cord. I've long been hoping the M-Vac was a tool Sill's has used in this case (I even mentioned it here on WS). I wonder if he would comment on it if asked by a reporter?
 

prncssrg

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I wish we could hear a bit more from Landen Wilson. How much blood was on RD's feet? Were any footprints (bare feet or with shoes/boots) visible in crime scene photos? Also, I have additional questions... Is it likely the instrument used for decapitation was already in the Dermond home (not carried to the scene by perps)? Is it typical for fishermen to have 30 lb cinder blocks in their boats? Are uncolored concrete cinder blocks more common than red... is the red color just a by-product of materials used in forming the blocks? I'm still questioning how much knowledge a person needs to make such a single strike "clean" decapitation... specifically with regard to the human spinal cord. I've long been hoping the M-Vac was a tool Sill's has used in this case (I even mentioned it here on WS). I wonder if he would comment on it if asked by a reporter?
I live in Texas and never have seen a red cinder block. I know some fishermen use cinder blocks as anchors. They are a lot cheaper than buying a new anchor. Did the Dermonds have a boat? I'm sorry if this question has been asked before. I can only go back to thread 10 so I don't know if it has been asked. If they did have a boat did they check it out for blood?
 

worm

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I live in Texas and never have seen a red cinder block. I know some fishermen use cinder blocks as anchors. They are a lot cheaper than buying a new anchor. Did the Dermonds have a boat? I'm sorry if this question has been asked before. I can only go back to thread 10 so I don't know if it has been asked. If they did have a boat did they check it out for blood?

Good point. Even tho they lived by a lake I don’t think I’ve heard of a boat. They very well could have had one.
 

fred&edna

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I live in Texas and never have seen a red cinder block. I know some fishermen use cinder blocks as anchors. They are a lot cheaper than buying a new anchor. Did the Dermonds have a boat? I'm sorry if this question has been asked before. I can only go back to thread 10 so I don't know if it has been asked. If they did have a boat did they check it out for blood?

Here's an early post regarding the boat owned by the Dermonds.

"The Dermonds once owned a boat, but they sold it years ago, the sheriff said."

Read more here: http://www.macon.com/2014/05/08/3087453/decapitation-unlikely-cause-of.html#storylink=cpy

"Russell Dermond has paid taxes on a 23-foot boat, which Sills said the couple recently sold...." (snipped by me)
http://www.wsmv.com/story/25465454/...capitated-wife-missing-authorities-seek-clues

Like


GA - GA - Shirley, 87, & Russell Dermond, 88, Putnam County, 2 May 2014 - # 1


And, here's a working link to a news report dated May 8. 2014 (Mrs D was still missing at that point) which mentions the sale of the boat.



 
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acehard

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I'm still questioning how much knowledge a person needs to make such a single strike "clean" decapitation
I don't think it requires much to make a clean one. There was a 16 year old student in Russia who decapitated a 19 year old with a kitchen knife in the park. Double bagged the head and put it in his backpack to show to his gf.

Did they say Dermond was decapitated with a single strike? That's highly unlikely.
 

fred&edna

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I don't think it requires much to make a clean one. There was a 16 year old student in Russia who decapitated a 19 year old with a kitchen knife in the park. Double bagged the head and put it in his backpack to show to his gf.

Did they say Dermond was decapitated with a single strike? That's highly unlikely.

As unlikely as it sounds, that's what I heard.

Approx 27:25 mark, "The ME determined the decapitation was performed postmortem. The head was severed with a single clean cut at the C5 vertebrae. This finding contradicted Sheriff Sills initial determination that the killer required multiple cuts to complete the decapitation."



And, later in the episode they went on to discuss the possible blade used to make such a cut... machete or sword.
 
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prncssrg

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According to the autopsy report, Russell had severe atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. On the podcast they thought he was in good shape so more than likely there was more than one person. Having this disease could mean that it "might" be just one person. He wouldn't have the stamnia and could very easily taken by one person. The person having the gun can threaten both of them and if Russell tried to "defend" he could be taken down easily with that disease. Just a thought.

As far as selling the boat - I wonder if they checked the buyer out? If the killer/s docked in the Dermond's boat would anyone really give it a second glance? And the Dermonds would let that person in the house because of the sale of the boat.

On the decapitation, a Katana could easily take the head off with one swipe. If it didn't go all the way through then they could "saw" through the rest. It's not like that bone is thick.

We need to do some recreations! :)
 

mpnola

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I watched Episode 1 on Youtube, The Dermonds. Reaaaalllly great job!! My favorite part was the multiple ideas and views and opinions, all while just brain storming. MVAC WILL be key! I agree. Lots of evidence there. My views seemed to line up with the crime scene guy, although I agreed with lots of the lines of thinking. Full disclosure, I knew about this case, but didn't follow it closely. So, I don't know if that helps or hurts. But. I came without any ideas of what happened or who is responsible. So, if any of my ideas don't make sense, I apologize and that is the reason.

Here are some thoughts I jotted down:
- no one really mentioned a son of a neighbor or a friend of one of their sons. This feels personal, to me! I know the overwhelming opinion is not that, but I am not sure why. Nothing was taken, except 2 lives. In very gruesome ways! It feels personal. But it feels personal with the majority of the aggression to him. Like, they were softer hearted to her. Maybe she knew them better, from around the neighborhood or a friend of a son, would know her better. Something like that.
- the circle in the garage that the blood has no blood under it. It wasn't discussed past mentioning it, but my first thought was one of those buckets with a lid, like a paint container. That could also be weighted and dropped in the lake and would not cause much suspicion. That to me feels like someone went there expecting to take the head off.
- he had grey hair in his hand and on his shirt. My first thought or more of a picture in my head would be a man holding her head to his chest in a protective way. Then I thought of the finger. What was wrong with his finger? could his finger been hit with the hammer to cause the damage?
- He was in his sleep clothes. She was fully dressed with shoes on. Was it typical for her to wear shoes in the house? My mom ALWAYS has her shoes on. She puts them on right when she gets dressed. I NEVER have my shoes on, until I am walking out the door. This would let us know if she was planning on going somewhere or if it is just typical of her day.
- talking about the very sharp weapon. Again, I had a "picture" pop in my mind. Now keep in mind, I am from South Louisiana, so we are cajun! But, I pictured a guy who sharpens his weapons. My brothers were big gun cleaners. Someone was always cleaning a gun. But, some guys are knife sharpeners. Sitting on the porch sharpening it. Can machetes be sharpened like that? I can easily see that. And secondly, if you begin your swack from the back on the neck, does it go through the bone more easily than if you go from the front? Do we know which way it was cut from? I am SO sorry for that visual.
- This was a little thought, but if the ballistics were already registered to someone, they would need to get rid of the projectile, not just the gun.

Things that dont' feel right to me-
- robbery, because nothing was taken! The jewelry was in plain sight. Older people keep cash! They would have rummaged something. Them not having an ATM card is EXACTLY what I would expect. Neither of my parents have one. She cashes a check at the bank. Her friend does the same thing. They both told me they dont understand how ATMs work. And they are in their 70s. Not THAT old haha
- some cartel or organized type crime. Because why. They would have had to do something to made someone mad. Or they would have had something big missing. I think those are in and out quickly. I don't think they would have taken her away from the property. She would have had the same fate, right there. Criminals, yes. Something bigger than that? I don't think so. Would professionals use a cinder block and several colors of rope? That sounds home grown, to me. But, I am not well versed in those items.
- Ransom. No way, to me. Because he was dead!!! Who are you going to get ransom from?
- Him being killed outside. This guy was in his boxers. No way. Most people wouldn't go outside like that, much less an older guy, usually.

Ok, sorry that I had so much to say! I have ONE other thing that I didn't want to include in my thoughts because I am not even sold on it, but there is some form of it that keeps popping in my head, so I want to mention it, even though the thought isn't fully developed.
--- Does she ride on boats? Let's say "Jim" the son's childhood friend had a boat and wanted to take her on a sunrise putter around the lake, just to enjoy nature, the scenery, the weather. He was excited about his new boat and wanted to take her out there. Is that something she would have been excited about? I bring it up for 2 reasons.
1- she was fully dressed and he was still in pajamas. I don't think that is odd, but it left me with the possibility that she was either leaving or already out of the house. There is no evidence of her being harmed in the house, right? No blood inside of hers.
and 2- if she was killed ON a boat, it would be easy to clean and easy to dispose of her.

There was one other thing I thought of while I didn't have my paper, but that is enough, so I will leave it at that! I'm ok with all the hole poking anyone has in my thoughts! :)

Again, super interesting, well done and this will be a great way to brain storm things into a well thought out list of ideas. Keep it up, y'all!
 

mpnola

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Wait. Sorry. I have another thought hahaha. There is no evidence of blood inside, right? The killer could not have gone back in for her because he would have been bloody. And the circle thing (I will call it bucket) had to stay in place long enough for the blood to kind of dry, before moving it, right? Otherwise, the blood would have filled that circle in. To me, that does give a little bit of a timeline of events or restriction of movement.
 

acehard

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As unlikely as it sounds, that's what I heard.

Approx 27:25 mark, "The ME determined the decapitation was performed postmortem. The head was severed with a single clean cut at the C5 vertebrae. This finding contradicted Sheriff Sills initial determination that the killer required multiple cuts to complete the decapitation."



And, later in the episode they went on to discuss the possible blade used to make such a cut... machete or sword.
Right, I think the single clean cut is when severing the spine. This can be done with a meat cleaver. He was a poor 88 year old man :( There is little flesh/muscle
 

acehard

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According to the autopsy report, Russell had severe atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. On the podcast they thought he was in good shape so more than likely there was more than one person. Having this disease could mean that it "might" be just one person. He wouldn't have the stamnia and could very easily taken by one person. The person having the gun can threaten both of them and if Russell tried to "defend" he could be taken down easily with that disease. Just a thought.

As far as selling the boat - I wonder if they checked the buyer out? If the killer/s docked in the Dermond's boat would anyone really give it a second glance? And the Dermonds would let that person in the house because of the sale of the boat.

On the decapitation, a Katana could easily take the head off with one swipe. If it didn't go all the way through then they could "saw" through the rest. It's not like that bone is thick.

We need to do some recreations! :)
Doesn't have to be the boat buyer. These are fairly large isolated properties with retired people. A boat docking may not attract much attention
 

fred&edna

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Right, I think the single clean cut is when severing the spine. This can be done with a meat cleaver. He was a poor 88 year old man :( There is little flesh/muscle

I guess you're right in that no special weapon was necessary... just a heavy, sharp blade with some strength (or at least some deliberate force) behind it.

Also, I suppose any of the (older/retired) homeowners living in the more remote areas of this gated community could have been targets but I have to wonder what made these killers choose the Dermonds.
 

CocoChanel

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ADMIN NOTE:
2 posts from the Citizen Detective Podcast Partnership thread were copied into the Dermond case discussion here. They are a few posts back, but wanted to explain why you see them here now. They are inserted according to the date they were originally posted in that other thread. Just trying to keep the pertinent case discussion over here.

FYI - here is the thread about the Citizen Detective podcast hosted by well-known true crime podcaster Mike Morford who is a longtime Websleuths member.
Citizen Detective True Crime Podcast
Join in over there where Mike is posting about the episodes and cases they are covering.
 
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wildebeest

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I guess you're right in that no special weapon was necessary... just a heavy, sharp blade with some strength (or at least some deliberate force) behind it.

Also, I suppose any of the (older/retired) homeowners living in the more remote areas of this gated community could have been targets but I have to wonder what made these killers choose the Dermonds.
The only thing occurring to me, is someone wanted them dead. Can’t believe it is still unsolved.
 

fred&edna

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'Just noticed this recent M-Vac success story solving a 43 yr old cold case (linked below). Please tell me Sheriff Sills knows about this technique and plans to use it to solve the Dermond murders.


"... the Montgomery County Sheriff's Office revealed that after utilizing a new forensic technology called "M-Vac," scientists were able to link the 1979 murder of Lesia Mitchell Jackson to an already-executed man named Gerald Dwight Casey."

 
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illyana

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Sad and mysterious case. Just listened to the Citizen Detective podcast. I don't have much to add to what the participants and experts had to say, except a few comments on the weapon used in the beheading.

This house was extremely isolated and heavily wooded. It would make sense that the Dermonds would have a chainsaw or other brush and tree clearing equipment in their garage, even if they hadn't used them personally in many years, but a gardener or other handyman did.

No need for someone to bring a machete or sword to the scene.

snapshot-13-e1651898940646.jpg


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