Tragic news emerged out of Michigan this week with a report from The Detroit Free Press that a mother murdered her husband and children before committing suicide. A handgun was found at the scene of the crime.
The bodies of Lauren Stuart and her family were discovered in their home this past Friday after Lauren shot each of them in the head. The two children Steven and Bethany were 27 and 24 respectively. The murders were discovered because a concerned relative called the police and asked them to check in on the house. The discovery has shocked the quiet local community.
The fact that this news is just reaching national awareness is a sad indication of how awash our nation is in gun violence. Incidents like this have become so common they often hardly make a blip.
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Lauren Stuart was a model and fitness trainer and her husband David was a data solutions architect for the University of Michigan. By all accounts, the gunwoman was a caring and friendly person.
Free Press attributes the motive to a possible sense of alienation experienced by Mrs. Stuart. She had been ostracized by Jehovah’s Witnesses, the faith she had grown up in but left five years ago. Several sources informed Free Press that most former adherents face a “drastic shunning” when they leave Jehovah’s Witness.
“They were shunned every way possible. If Lauren went to the grocery store, they didn’t look her in the eye. When you are raised a Jehovah’s Witness, they choose your friends. They choose who you associate with. And if you go against that, they will dis-fellowship you, or shun you,” said family friend Joyce Taylor, who is also a former member of the religious group. Taylor said she was stunned by the murders.
Taylor explained that Lauren and her husband Daniel had a loving relationship and that Lauren attempted to help Daniel deal with his depression. The fact that at least one of the two suffered from depression raises the question of why Lauren Stuart had such easy access to a handgun.
Gun reform laws should focus on keeping guns out of the hands of people who pose a danger to themselves or others. Perhaps more stringent restrictions could have prevented this tragedy.