Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Death of Susette Werner

Susette G. Werner, a 42-year-old divorced mother of two children was an easy-going person, intelligent and strong-willed. She kept a positive attitude and loved people and life. A friend of hers said she couldn’t get mad at anyone because she could easily be made to laugh. Her family said she stayed with friends but kept in touch; she’d call just to say hello; to hear their voice. Susie’s last night was spent at a local lounge where she was a regular at karaoke and listening to her favorite band. She stopped drinking after midnight but stayed until closing then called a friend for a ride, but he couldn’t come and drive her.

Sunday, Feb 8, 2009 around 1:30 to 3 a.m. Susie left the restaurant and lounge that she often frequented and was hit at the intersection of Cedar and Carlisle in Spokane, Washington. Susie’s body was dragged for a mile. According to evidence gathered she was dragged south on Cedar to Northwest Boulevard, west on Northwest Boulevard to Ash and south on Ash to Maxwell. Regardless of all the evidence and descriptions of two vehicles (the possible dragging vehicle and a witness’ vehicle) they have not solved Susette’s death; she has yet to find justice.
The automobile believed at that time to be suspects’ vehicle is a boxy green, sports utility vehicle or van. Witnesses say the driver was a heavy set, tall male wearing a light-colored mid-length jacket. A person driving a teal or turquoise station wagon may have witnessed the dragging, at the most, he may know the suspect. Witnesses saw both vehicles at Corky’s Radiator Shop on North Ash Street where the driver of the sports utility got out of his vehicle with a flashlight and looked down Ash Street. He then made a phone call, and a few minutes later the person driving the teal or turquoise station wagon drove into the Radiator Shop parking lot. The driver exited his vehicle, faced the suspect driver and then the suspect driver got back in his car and peeled out the lot headed south and turning east onto Sinto Avenue. The driver of the turquoise car backed up into a driveway and headed back toward the way he’d came.

The local police retraced Susie’s steps the morning she died. They believed she left the bar around 1:30 a.m. with two men, but have since talked to those men. The two men say they dropped her off near her home because she couldn’t explain where the apartment was. The police also believe she was lying on the ground when the suspect vehicle hit her. And that the driver was going at a slow speed. The suspect vehicle driver was said to have backed up at Ash and Maxwell where they discovered the body, and they believed that is when the body dislodged.

Sadly, they have declared the above witnesses’ information of the suspect vehicle backing up unreliable, as well as the information on the second vehicle. LE now regrets making the video public. The bartender said Susie left the bar alone and went to a convenience store where she advised the clerk she believed someone was following her. The store clerk told her that he didn’t see anyone suspicious and Susie left the store alone and walking.

Stories surrounding Susie’s last hours are unclear. The autopsy reports, (according to her family) states she had many broken bones, including her legs. According to media articles no broken leg is the reason LE thought she was lying on the ground when the car hit her. But LE states they meant her shins weren’t broken. Susie’s billfold wasn’t found on her person the night she died either, but a couple who was walking in an alley, the day after the discovery of Susie’s body, found it. The alley is near Cedar and Carlisle where it’s believed the vehicle first hit Susie.

I wonder if closure with this case, justice for Susie, will ever happen. Perhaps Susie had her personal demons, her father says she was an alcoholic, but that isn’t cause for someone to kill her. I agree it isn’t just cause. Perhaps her demons were because she had divorced and her children were with their father. Or maybe because she knew she was an alcoholic and couldn’t find the ‘want to’ to stop drinking. Perhaps her demons were because she was lonely and couldn’t find her niche in this world.   None of these perhaps is proof she had personal demons. They are my speculation. I can think of other plausible scenarios that are just as believable as the ones in the articles. One thing I am sure of is that absolutely nothing is cause enough to run over a person and drag her more than thirteen blocks, a mile, and then leave that person’s mangled body lying on the roadside.

Somebody knows something about this murder; someone has to know and they need to come forward. Susie needs peace in her afterlife. Her family needs answers and they have a right to properly grieve knowing justice prevailed for Susie.



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