Wednesday, March 26, 2008

As some of you are aware, we had a quintuple homicide here in Iowa City on Monday. It made the national news more for the school lockdown than for just about anything else, I think. Initially, it was reported that the family had been shot by the husband/father. It tuned out that he did indeed kill his family but did not shoot them. He later successfully killed himself (after failing to drown himself in the IA river and poison himself with CO) by ramming his minivan into a freeway bridge on I-80. The man had been the CFO of a major bank in the area and had embezzeled nearly $600,000 over a seven year period to feed a cocaine habit. Here's the ironic part. Here in IA, license plates are given three numbers and three letters. The letters on his plate were BLO - it was not a personalized plate. Anyway, he was caught and indicted last month and was to stand trial in April. As tragic as the situation is, it became even more so last night when Michelle and I realized that we both knew the man's wife. Cheryl was a regular at the gym. Although I had only had her in class a few times, I saw her all the time. Michelle actually knew her better than I. She talked to Cheryl almost every day. This is one of those things that you say always happens to other people. I guess it is the law of averages - the longer you live, the more likely it will be you or someone you know.


Jess and Jen said...

I did read about it the other day on CNN and wondered about you guys. That's really sad.

Not that any killing makes sense, but I really don't understand these ones when they take the lives of their family too. It really is so sad and it seems like this sort of thing is happening a lot lately.


Papa Doc and the Duke said...

I read about this yesterday and felt sick at heart. If he didn't shoot them, how did he kill them?
Why didn't he just take his own life? Why would he have to do this to his kids and wife?! Maybe he thought he would spare them embarassment because of what he had done - must have been high on coke to have done what he did.

Mike and Adrianne said...

It is such a sad and crazy story. We had a lockdown on base a month or so ago because some guy was going through a divorce with his wife. It was his turn with the kids and they got in a fight in front of the kids. Then she left to get a neighbor and when she walked out the door he shot his two children and himself. So, so, sad.

chelsey said...

There was also a man here in Mason that recently killed his wife and 4 kids by setting the house on fire while they were asleep. I don't know if he took out the batteries from the alarms or what. They all died -- except him. He wasn't dead yet when the fire and police arrived. He's in prison now and hopefully for a very long, long time. What's so strange is when it happens to a family that was so "normal" on the outside. There'd never be any reason to suspect a problem. It really is sad there's such difficulty and sadness in the world. I remember the kids in that family's neighborhood really having a hard time because 4 of their friends had just been killed. How do you explain that?

Michelle Clark said...

To find out the real details of our Iowa City tradgedy, please go to

Steve Sueppel was not on cocaine as reported at first. However he did beat his 4 children to death with a baseball bat.

I don't understand such things, I am sad, for I cared for Sheryl, we talked many times. I just hope her parents and his parents and all the neighbors and everyone that loved them can be comforted. My heart hurts right now.

I attended the vigil tonight. This was not planned. I was in the neighborhood to pick up a friend and had to drive by the Sueppel home. Many of my friends from Core fitness were outside the home with candles. I got out, stood with them and we all hugged and cried. So sad. Sheryl's father said, "We loved Steve as our own child and we still love him. He wasn't in his right mind"