Sunday, January 10, 2010

Sisyphus Was Smalltime

Sisyphus was a piker compared to 73 year old Walter Sartory, brilliant mathematician, atomic scientist (Oak Ridge National Laboratory) financial wizard (retired, he built a $14 million portfolio), social phobic, paranoid schizophrenic.

The CIA, as it turned out, was not using trained ants to spy on him. His efforts to make better contact with the real world through therapy, prescribed medication, online social forums and even, eventually, face-to-face contact were working.

So, according to police in the Kentucky town where Sartory lived, was his cleaning lady; the problem was, she was working on robbing him. Near the end of February 2009, Walter Sartory vanished; after ten days, his friends contacted local police, who checked out his house and found nothing amiss until early March, when they discovered the garage door open unlocked and no one home. From there, they followed clues to the maid service he had used and the maid assigned to his home, which lead them to Willa Blanc. She and her son are now alleged to have kidnapped, tortured, and killed Sartory, eventually carrying his body in a trash can to Morgan-Monroe State Forest here in Indiana, where they burned it. Along the way, they were involved in a traffic accident in Indiana; the accused killer coolly informed police the trash can, bungee-corded shut, contained only firewood. She had the vehicle, body-containing trash can and all, towed back to Kentucky, rented a van, loaded the trash can into it and drove back to Indiana to burn Mr. Sartory's body with the help of her son and others.

Willa Blanc and her son were arrested shortly after police found burned human remains in Morgan-Monroe; they are now being held in Kentucky in lieu of ten million dollars bail each.

And Walter Sartory is still dead. He tried to reach out -- he was reaching out! -- and attracted the attention of a heartless predator. (News stories and other information collected here).

Mornings like these, I'm not too impressed with my species.


John B said...

two words....
Death Penalty!

Anonymous said...


Don't the cops read those billboards along the side of the highway: don't move firewood, it bugs me.

Shootin' Buddy

Anonymous said...

It's a form of Stockholm Syndrome. You may be trapped on this planet, but be careful not to identify too closely with the natives.


Comrade Misfit said...

Murder for profit is enough to get one the big needle in KY, it would seem.

Anonymous said...

EB - Hopefully.


Chuck Pergiel said...

Two of the reports came from the UK and the third was from UPI, which, well, it's international. What's the local press doing?