mary lou arruda was in my freshman class and sat next to me in homeroom/math. her death, although she was by no means a close friend, had a profound effect on my life especially so years into my future when an actual friend was raped and murdered in texas( to this day unsolved). kater was finally convicted of mary lou's murder in 2000-22 years and over 4 trials after her murder.
today's card is number 19- the sun. spin it upside down. " beware the deceptions that are practiced in the full light of day... remember the scorpion who waits motionless in the sunlight is also a symbol of treachery...[and]... the possibility of self destruction." on this same week in 1984 i was admitted into the hospital due to an over dose. i emerged one year later alive but haunted- the after shock of growing up in the bridgewater triangle where little girls fall victim to murderous sadists and giant prehistoric reptile birds fly over the power lines and into the sun.
"The jury at Kater's fourth trial could have found the following facts. On September 8, 1978, at about 4 P.M., fifteen year old Mary Lou Arruda disappeared while riding her bicycle near her home in Raynham. Her bicycle was found at approximately 4:30 P.M. that same day by the side of a road. Next to it was an automobile tire track with an acceleration mark. The track characteristics suggested that the tire had an abnormal tread wear pattern. A Benson & Hedges brand cigarette was found nearby in the middle of the road. Two months later, on November 11, 1978, Arruda's decomposed, fully-clothed body was found tied to a tree in Freetown State Forest. The cause of her death was strangulation by ligature or positional asphyxia. A pathologist testified that Arruda had been alive and in a standing position when she was tied to the tree, but that once she became unconscious, the weight of her head against the ligature around her neck caused her to suffocate. Arruda most likely died the same day she disappeared."
"Kater had previously committed a crime similar in significant detail to the one inferably perpetrated against Mary Lou Arruda. On February 6, 1969, Kater pled guilty to indictments of assault with intent to rape, assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon, and kidnapping. All of the indictments were related to the 1968 abduction and attacks on Jacalyn Bussiere. On June 22, 1968, between 1:30 P.M. and 2:30 P.M., thirteen year old Jacalyn Bussiere was walking her bicycle home on a quiet street in North Andover when she noticed that a small, unfamiliar light blue automobile had stopped in front of her. It was the same car that had passed by her several times earlier that afternoon. The driver, James M. Kater,(3) was standing in the middle of the street. The driver's side door was open and the engine was running. Kater stood facing her and asked for directions to a neighbor's house. As Kater walked toward her and Bussiere toward him, he seemed friendly. But when she answered him by turning and pointing to the place he purportedly wanted to go, he covered her mouth and nose with his hand. As she tried to get away, she dropped her bicycle and saw that Kater was holding an iron bar. Kater then forced a very frightened Bussiere into the car on the floor underneath the dashboard. He immediately got in the driver's seat, put the car in reverse, backed down the street, and turned around at an intersection. Driving very fast, they traveled for about thirty minutes, the last few of which were along a wooded path. Kater then stopped the car, pulled Bussiere out, and walked her further into the woods. He hit her on the back of the head with the iron bar while forcing her to kneel at a stream. As Kater tried to force Bussiere's face into the water, she resisted and grabbed Kater's glasses and flung them away. As he retrieved them, she fled but did not get far before he grabbed her again. Kater then forced her back into the car and drove deeper into the woods. He stopped again, took Bussiere out of the car, walked further into the woods, and forced her to stand against a tree. Kater used strips from a torn bedspread to tie Bussiere's hands, ankles, and torso against the tree. After twenty minutes of pacing back and forth, Kater came up behind Bussiere and pulled the last strip of bedspread very tight against her neck and then strangled her with his hands. Bussiere lost consciousness. When she regained consciousness, she found herself alone, slumped over, and bound to the tree. She managed to untie herself and ran until she found help. From there she was taken home, to a hospital, and then to the police department."
taken from ma supreme court appeal documents Docket No.: SJC-07967 COMMONWEALTH vs. JAMES M. KATER.