From the Associated Press newswire:
GARDEN GROVE, Calif. — A Southern California woman was in custody Tuesday after authorities said she drugged her estranged husband, tied him to a bed, cut off his penis and put it through a garbage disposal.
Garden Grove police Lt. Jeff Nightengale said that Catherine Kieu Becker drugged a meal and served it to the victim, whose name was not released, shortly before the attack Monday night. Nightengale said the 51-year-old man felt sick, went to lie down and lost consciousness. The 48-year-old Becker then tied the victim’s arms and legs to the bed with rope, removed his clothes and attacked him with a 10-inch kitchen knife as he awoke, Nightengale said.
“He was conscious when his penis was removed,” Nightengale said.
Nightengale said Becker put the penis in the garbage disposal and turned it on.
She put it in the garbage disposal, y’all.
Naturally, the Harpies had a conversation about this. The woman reportedly told the police that her husband—who had initiated divorce proceedings—”deserved it.” Maybe. Maude knows, I’ve been keeping a list of men I think deserve it for some time now (yeah, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, you’re at the top).
Anna commented that: “it makes you wonder what sort of history was there, that he “deserved” it, yeah?” Which…yeah. Maybe I’m just jaded and cynical—actually, maybe we all are—because that’s exactly what I (and we) first thought when we heard the news. After seeing case after case where rapists going free, rape victims are smeared, battered women are dismissed by the police and murdered by their partners, it makes taking a knife and firing up the disposal….well, let’s just say that, in the words of Chris Rock, “I ain’t sayin’ it’s right…but I understand.”
We don’t know much about this case—apparently there’s no reported history of spousal abuse on either side—but PhDork said: “I worry that a severed wang is going to be the least worst part of this story.”
That was certainly the case with Lorena Bobbitt, who cut off her husband’s penis in 1993. Lorena Bobbitt was acquitted by reason of insanity after extensive testimony about being beaten and raped by her husband. While battered woman syndrome is very real, it always seemed to me that the jury was thinking less about the specifics of Lorena’s mental health than just going with the gut feeling that John “had it coming.”
Clearly, something very, very wrong happened here. That much is indisputable. What struck me as we discussed this is that there’s still an awful lot wrong in the world if our first thought is that the man might have been the victim of rough justice by someone he victimized rather than the victim of a horrible assault. Or that this kind of attack might be justice at all. I ask you, gentle readers, are things really that bad?