Three names I’ll be watching

On July 2, 2005, in Crime, by Jody Ewing

I’m embarrassed to even admit this took place in Iowa, but then again, people who like to torture live everywhere, including Iowa.

But when Josh Colvin, the cruelty intervention coordinator for the Animal Rescue League refers to this as “the worst animal torture I’ve ever seen,” I know I’ll be keeping an eye on the the names of three Iowa teens who were arrested and charged in dousing opossums in lighter fluid and setting them on fire — as they laughed and jeered and videotaped the entire horrific ordeal.

Their names — David Bendickson, Anthony Herrington and Kevin Calderon — all of Fort Dodge, Iowa.

Animal torture is punishable only by up to two years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000. What on earth is wrong with this picture????? If it’s only punishable for up to two years, how long before these murderers are back on the street looking for their next victim(s)? And what does one do to “top” something like what they’ve already done?

I can see it now. When David Bendickson, Anthony Herrington and Kevin Calderon are arrested again in the near future for torturing and killing a next-door neighbor’s young child – or perhaps a young child going about his or her business of playing at the local park – the headlines will read:

“Killers Had History of Torturing and Killing Innocent Victims.”

I think it’s timeto write more letters to some state legislators.

8 Responses to Three names I’ll be watching

  1. Anonymous says:

    I’ve known David Bendickson since I was 11 years old. He’s been one of my best friends. He’s someone that a person could look up to and he’d be there for you. I admit what he did was stupid and immature… it’s not something you can really make excuses for. David grew up on a farm where animals are slaughtered all the time, it’s just a part of life, and that can really desensitize a person to that kind of thing.

    All I know is that when David realized how big of a deal this made, he didn’t eat or sleep for three days.
    David would be the furthest person i could think of to a murderer, or a baby killer. I’m sorry you think this of him and the other two. I’m not trying to say that what they did wasn’t wrong, i’m just trying to let you see it from another point of view.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Hey anon,

    Someone you could look up to? Wow. What your friend did was not stupid and immature. It was cruel and evil. There’s a big difference. Also, there’s a big difference between the way animals are slaughtered on a farm versus what he did. Farm animals are not slaughtered by dousing them in lighter fluid and setting them on fire — and then laughing and filming the whole thing. Oh, boo-hoo, David didn’t eat or sleep for three days?! Wow, those innocent animals won’t ever eat or sleep again! There are numerous ties between cruelty against animals and cruelty against people.

    “…every time we hear of a young person abusing an animal, it is explained away by family and often authorities as a ‘youthful indiscrection’…What the authorities and parents of these young men fail to realize is that their behavior may signal that something is wrong with these men, which could very easily escalate into something much worse. The evidence is not just anecdotal; numerous studies, including the 1998 work of Randall Lockwood and Frank R. Ascione (“Cruelty to Animals and Interpersonal Violence,” Purdue University Press), have shown that children who engage in animal cruelty are more likely to commit more violent acts as adults. There is also a strong link between abuse of animals and domestic violence, with animal abusers much more likely to batter their wives or girlfriends as well…

    Youthful violence toward animals is a very serious issue, and it needs to be taken seriously by not only animal advocates like myself, but by those who are concerned about violence in our society.” – Margo DeMello, Ph.D.

    You should find someone else to look up to. He’s not worthy. BTW, lots of people never thought Ted Bundy would be a murderer either.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Okay, I’m sure everyone in their lifetime has made mistakes. I feel that people need to quit looking for other people’s mistakes to give them something to talk about just so they feel better about their miserable excuse for a life. So for all of you people out there that are just waiting for someone else to screw up, you need a serious reality check and realize just how shitty of a person you are and stop tryin to jump on the bandwagon and destroy someone else’s life just because they’ve made a mistake

  4. Anonymous says:

    hey you all need to back off david he is a really good kid. I feel priviledged to know him. He’s probably one of the most respectable people i know and very well liked i should know since i was in his class in high school and am one of his good friends. People make mistakes in there lives and just because someone makes a mistake doesnt mean there gonna go off and kill little children like the author of this post suggests. I know David regrets the decision he made that night and i know he will learn from it too. He also isn’t trying to deny it he is facing the music like a man and i find that very admirable and something to look up to as the first poster said. Also, for all you people that are saying these awful things about these boys you need to take a long look in the mirror because as the Bible relays “let he who is without sin, cast the first stone.”
    Thats all i have to say for now and i hope all of you haters leave him and his family alone.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Ok for you I can’t believe all you ppl out there judging these boys,i mean ya they messed up behond belief there is no avoiding that.i am sure that if everyone of you look back in your pointless lives you will all have something you totally regret doing. i have known two of the boys for a short time and one all my life and would still be friends with all, they know what they did was messed up and trust me from talking toall of them if they couuld they would go back and take that night back and do something diff if they could. so too all you ppl that feel the need to point fingers maybe you should look at some of the things you have done in your past, it might not have been to the extent of this but i am sure you would take it back if you could and if it was someone close to you like these three are to me you would know that just because someone f**ks up doesnt mean they are going to kill then neighbor, beat the gf or wife, or some other violent crime. ya ted bundy you can look at him but if you look a little deep into that there were some real reasons he was so messed up. from knowing these boys particulrly the one all my life they dont fit the crap you all are saying about them. they know there lifes will never be the same so how about this stay the fuck out of there lives they have to live with what they did for the rest of there lives. not to mention two years ya ppl thats longer then some ppl out there that have actually murdered ppl now how messed up is that they are the ones you should be watching who most likely have had a long list of other crimes before they murdered.

    by the way i was a crimingal just major in college and studied these kinda cases and other like it and these boys are not even close to the same not even close.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Even some of the best people and some of the smartest people make some of the dumbest mistakes. I know friends who know one of the boys very well. I personally know one of the boys. This was out of his character and was, on there part, a stupid action that they carried out. He is remorseful every day and has a hard time talking about it. And NO it’s not just because they got caught. I’m sure we can all think about dumb things we did when we were there ages with our friends. Maybe not to such an extent, but none the less. Spend 30 minutes with Anthony or just talk to him. He’s a nice, wonderful, and smart guy …. who ONCE made a really bad decision. Which will NOT be repeated.

  7. Jody says:

    Anonymous, you really have made a good point here and I thank you for your comments. The truth is, we’ve all made mistakes in our lives, and yes, even some pretty dumb ones. Another truth is we sometimes rush to judgement, particularly when an action goes against the grain of a value we hold dear. We take it so personally.

    If there’s any good that came out of all this, it’s that these boys learned they still had people who cared about them and believed in them despite what happened. That speaks volumes, and that kind of faith often serves as a better deterrent than the worst kind of punishment. Anthony is fortunate to have your support, and I suspect your friendship already has made a difference in his life.

    We should all be so lucky to have such friends. Thank you for reminding me of the power of forgiveness.

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