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

Discussion in 'Cold Cases' started by KateB, May 16, 2015.

  1. fred&edna

    fred&edna Well-Known Member

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    Apologies in advance for discussing graphic aspects here.

    I (once again) listened to parts of the Sworn podcasts about this case, and while it probably means nothing, I find it interesting the killer "apparently" removed Mr D's head and placed it directly on the garage floor. Which makes me think the killer didn't have a container (garbage bag or something?) at the ready once the decapitation was complete. And/or was the person who performed the decapitation alone in the house at this time - Unable to have cohort run to other area of the home to grab a bag or container? Maybe the killers were not thinking in advance (regarding decap)?

    Also, I wonder if anyone who was questioned by LE was noted to have injuries to their hands??
     
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  2. dotr

    dotr Well-Known Member

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    Tonight at 8.pm and 10pm. rbbm.
    Nov 8 2020
    Unsolved double-murder of Putnam Co. couple to air on TV
    ''Sills will be shown in segments on the popular HLN crime show Sunday at 8 p.m.''

    ''Sills said the investigation into one of the worst homicide cases he’s ever been involved with during his 40-plus years as a lawman, has taken a different course.

    “It’s proceeding in a more technical manner,” Sills said. “We are utilizing some new technology and we have received some data that we think may help us. I don’t know at this time if it will or not.”

    Several warrants have been obtained in the process, he said.

    “We don’t know if this new technology will lead us anywhere as far as solving this case, but that’s the direction we’re going in right now,” Sills said.

    Anyone with information about the unsolved murder case involving Russell and Shirley Dermond is asked to call the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office at 706-485-1650.''
     
  3. Peppery

    Peppery Well-Known Member

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    I know nothing about bullets or guns. Apologies for graphic questions.



    Is there a type of bullet that would not go completely through/exit the body AND not be easily retrieved from the head? My thinking (as someone unfamiliar with guns/gunshot wounds/ammunition) is that the bullet either goes somewhat cleanly through or it causes a large amount of physical damage and would be visible and able to be removed. Is that accurate? I can’t remember if there was brain matter or blood spatter found in the garage or anywhere else.

    This murderer was comfortable enough and knowledgable enough to cleanly remove the head, so would it have been easy to just remove the bullet? Even if it wasn’t easy to find, there’s only so much room in a head.

    This also leads me to think the murderer is familiar and comfortable with blood, cutting bones and tissues, so does he have a medical background, a hunter, a fisherman, someone who works in meat processing? Is it reasonable to suspect most people who aren’t part of those groups wouldn’t have the stomach or knowledge of how to remove a head? Stills did say it was a clean cut probably done by someone with know how.
     
  4. Warwick1991

    Warwick1991 Well-Known Member

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    Depending on the type of ammunition used, and the type of firearm, the spent bullet could stay in the head. Some rifle bullets could go straight through. Many pistol and rifle bullets - hollow points - expand after initial penetration and stay inside the body. These are used for hunting and self defense. Full metal jackets, used for target practice and by the military, can penetrate further. Depending on the caliber, full metal jacket ammunition might enter and exit a skull.

    I’m trying not to visualize this horrible scene, but I think it could be difficult to remove the bullet, but I would think that it would be easier than beheading. Something other than simply getting rid of evidence is probably at work. There’s some kind of rage and insanity here.
     
  5. deugirtni

    deugirtni Well-Known Member

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    Well this seems somewhat hopeful! Imo.
     
  6. PsychoBabble

    PsychoBabble Well-Known Member

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    Very interesting episode. Sad to see the son Brad, tear up a few times. Sheriff Sills is such a character but appears dedicated to the case. One new piece of info I picked up was that Russell was found with some of Shirley’s hair clutched in his hand.
    Does this mean they were killed together? Where on earth was the actual murder scene? They definitely were not killed at the house. Did the peeps take them somewhere in a vehicle?
    IMHO, this was definitely a “hit” but what could the Dermonds have done more recently to set off such a horrible and calculated murder by deranged individuals?
     
  7. dotr

    dotr Well-Known Member

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    So, some of Mrs. Dermond's hair was found in Mr Dermond's hand and gun residue found on his shirt, according to the expert on the recent show and RD's head may have been removed elsewhere with a machete!
    His body was left between his cars in the garage, with towels circling his neck area.

    SD was not only beaten to death, but the same expert opined that she had been struck on the head several times, possibly with a hammer!

    Why was RD so brutalized after death (decapitation) but SD brutalized before her death, surely beating up an 87 year old woman and smashing her head is over-kill ? imo.

    Why was RD spared that and shot? Why not shoot SD too? If it is true that the killings took place somewhere else, why oh why, was Mr D's body returned to the house? Why did he/they not return Mrs.D's body too? Why hide her in the water and not Mr D? If not his body, then why was his head not placed in the same waterway?

    Wondering if the perp was not physically strong and could not "take on" RD without shooting him, or the perp had a weaker assistant, (very young, old or female) to handle/kill one of them?

    Did the D's have a horse in the race they were to attend, did they bet on horses?
    Probably nothing to do with the murders, but when i think of crime, horses and decapitation, a scene from the GODFATHER, comes to mind..

    speculation, imo.
     
  8. StarryStarryNight

    StarryStarryNight Well-Known Member

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    I haven’t watched the TV show yet but some of the things that were covered in it got me thinking.
    Were they killed at another location and returned? Returning to the house with two brutalized bodies would certainly up the chances of being caught I would think, so it would have to be important to the killer to do that. Either a message being sent or just a completely mentally deranged person.
    This is kinda out there but if they were killed elsewhere it seems to me it would have to be somewhere close. Could it have been in their own neighborhood? Close enough but not so close that LE would have come knocking on the door canvassing the neighborhood before things got cleaned up. Do people rent out houses to vacationers in this development? Someone have a drugged up or violent adult child living there for awhile?
    I’m looking at things a bit differently after reading some of your comments on the show. I can’t wait to watch it.
    Just my thoughts.
     
  9. drama_farmer

    drama_farmer Central Kentucky (Bluegrass)

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    I'm leaning away from "concealment of ballistics evidence" as the most likely reason for removal of a body part. The only (obviously far-fetched) reason that would make sense, to me, IMO, would be if the perp was a vampire hunter who needed to retrieve his special solid silver bullet.

    Separating the head of a victim from the torso is not unheard of, and in the cases I recall, I can't remember a decapitation being done to conceal the properties of a projectile. Of course, I'm referring to cases where the head was ultimately recovered. IMO
     
  10. fred&edna

    fred&edna Well-Known Member

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    According to this (older report on the case), FBI agents were brought in at the request of SS (haven't we heard otherwise?)

     
  11. dotr

    dotr Well-Known Member

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    @ 2:35 (right near the end) Sills mentions contacting the FBI particularly because of how unusual it was that the murder involved decapitation.
     
  12. deugirtni

    deugirtni Well-Known Member

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    Just from memory, I had thought it was only GBI that SS refused to include. Imo

    ETA Also, I think SS mentioned interviewing and possibly also administering polygraph tests was done in conjunction with FBI agents at some point? (I will try to find)
     
  13. Jbetty567

    Jbetty567 Well-Known Member

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    Someone said upthread that Russell’s head was probably in the lake, which I agree with. But that made me realize how very likely it is that poor Shirley was forced into the boat,
    with the perps, and her husband’s head. I have to wonder whether they waved it as her as a threat as to what would happen to her if she didn’t cooperate with... what? We don’t know what they wanted. But when she couldn’t give them what they sought, they whacked her, tied her to the blocks (or maybe they even did that while she was still awake! Ugh) and threw her and the head over. The head would sink and stay submerged, unlike Shirley. It’s just so barbaric and over the top, I cannot for the life of me figure out who would do this or why. If this scenario is indeed how it all played out, the killers were very, very sadistic - and almost certainly had some personal motive to terrorize this couple.
     
  14. fred&edna

    fred&edna Well-Known Member

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    Ahhh, I see... maybe that's it, FBI utilized in this case but not GBI. I'll take you on your "memory" word. Thank you!
     
  15. StarryStarryNight

    StarryStarryNight Well-Known Member

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    That’s the way I remember it too. The GBI was left out.
     
  16. deugirtni

    deugirtni Well-Known Member

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    As an exercise as time allows, it would be interesting to make a list of other decapitations and the suspected 'reasoning' behind each one, and also whether or not the head was taken with the perps. I know some have done so during the course of dismembering the entire body to make it easier to dispose of/conceal, or in at least one case it seemed to be to boil and consume(????); and in horrible drug frenzied cases; I've heard it said that decapitation can be related to drug cartels, as a 'message' (but not sure if in those cases they took the head with them or left it behind with the body?).
     
  17. Warwick1991

    Warwick1991 Well-Known Member

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    Decapitation is also done by groups such as ISIS and Al-Qaeda, but the Dermonds sound like they'd be unlikely targets for such activity.
     
  18. drama_farmer

    drama_farmer Central Kentucky (Bluegrass)

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    Absolutely! That would be an interesting project, and would be research that can be used in other cases as well.

    I thought about doing some googling so I could provide some links in the original post, but got lazy;):rolleyes:

    I just listened to a podcast about the Yosemite/Stayner murders, which noted at least one decapitation, so that made me think about this case.

    I'm willing to search for historical info re: decapitation and try to find/compile some stats. If anyone else is interested, feel free to private message me so we can compare notes:)
     
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  19. deugirtni

    deugirtni Well-Known Member

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    Plus if a group such as that, they'd be happy to take credit for it, and not worry about towels, imho.
     
  20. deugirtni

    deugirtni Well-Known Member

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    OK admittedly this is really 'out there', but was just beginning to look at severed heads cases when I came upon an article which planted this seed of thought - is it possible that in the days immediately following the murders, a transaction of some kind was made, which required the live attendance and signature of RD?

    Could the killer have taken the head to allow a more precise lookalike makeup transformation in someone who would pose as RD, sign whatever docs, even before the body was discovered? Something along those lines might also explain why it was important to the killer to ward off discovery as long as possible, whereas otherwise, why would it matter how long it took?

    Of course this theory falls apart if nobody came forward after his murder was announced, to say, hey, I just signed some papers with him... unless it was some kind of an illegal transaction making it difficult for someone to come forward without risking his own freedom. Nevertheless, it would be interesting to know if SS was able to obtain access to financial records of all those close to RD. imo.
     

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