Tragedy And Trauma Land Hardest On Innocent Child from KC Star
An infant girl wakes up this morning without parents, both dead, dad killing mom and then turning the gun on himself. There are no answers. None that make sense, anyway.
Jovan Belcher, the Chiefs linebacker, shot longtime girlfriend Kasandra Perkins, drove to the team's practice facility, thanked general manager Scott Pioli and head coach Romeo Crennel for all they've done for him, then killed himself.
The Chiefs will never be the same after a murder-suicide unprecedented in the NFL.
A rattled community reacted with shock and disbelief, and some responded with a new perspective on professional athletes Saturday after Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher fatally shot his girlfriend, Kasandra Perkins, before killing himself in the Arrowhead Stadium parking lot.
"It's sad that someone with such a high profile like that does something that messed up," said Kansas City native Michael Groff. "When a guy's a pro football player, you assume everything is going good in his life.
"This is a reminder that isn't necessarily the case."
Pictures on Perkins' Facebook page show she was a proud mother, displaying images of the baby sleeping, smiling, taking a bath and looking up at her dad. Just 10 days before her death, Perkins posted photos from the baby's checkup at the doctor.
She told her Facebook friends that her daughter received three inoculations and joked that the baby didn't like the nurse. Back in October, she posted a photo of her and the baby with the words, "Just hangin w/mommy."
A friend posted that the baby looked like "Jovan's twin." Perkins replied: "Jovan Jr."
Chiefs' Quinn Describes Somber Scene At Arrowhead from KC Star
His first hint that this would be no normal Saturday came when police had the parking lot blocked off and he was redirected up the hill to Arrowhead Stadium and, eventually, a 9:30 team meeting.
"That's where we were told by coach Crennel what had happened," Quinn said.
At that moment Romeo Crennel, stopping at various junctures to maintain his composure, told Quinn and his teammates that linebacker Jovan Belcher had shot and killed his girlfriend, 22-year-old Kasandra Perkins, before going to the practice facility and ending his own life.
"It was obviously tough for Coach to have to tell us that," Quinn said. "He really wasn't able to finish talking to us. We got together and prayed and then we moved on."
Whether it was running from calisthenics to position drills, or from sideline to sideline during wind sprints, Belcher beat his fellow linebackers down the field. Every time.
It was that kind of hustle and desire that fueled Belcher's rise from small-school linebacker to a three-year starter for the Chiefs.
But somewhere all that energy went haywire on Saturday morning when Belcher shot and killed Kasandra Perkins, who was the mother of his three-month-old daughter, at their Kansas City home. He shot himself to death 20 minutes later in front of Chiefs coach Romeo Crennel and general manager Scott Pioli in the parking lot of the team's practice facility.
Utter Sadness In Kansas City from ESPN
I expect Kansas City fans to loudly support their hurting team Sunday when the Chiefs host Carolina at Arrowhead Stadium. It should go without saying that I hope there are no airplane flyovers imploring that people be fired, no fan "blackouts" at the game. The voice of the understandably angry Chiefs fan has been heard, and it has been noted.
Sunday will be about beginning the healing process and honoring those left behind from this senseless crime. Be a Chiefs fan Sunday. At the core, that's what you are.
At Maine, Belcher Had Been In Group Opposed To Violence from USA Today
Jovan Belcher earned a degree in child development and family relations from the University of Maine in just 3 ½ years and, while at the school, the football star was a member of Male Athletes Against Violence initiative, one former teammate said.
As part of MAAV, Belcher would have signed a pledge card, vowing never to commit violence against women and to stand up against those who did. The pledge, among other things, required him to "look honestly at my actions in regards to violence and make changes, if necessary."
Chiefs Linebacker Commits Suicide At Stadium from The New York Times
With his coach looking on, a Kansas City Chiefs linebacker shot and killed himself outside the team's practice facility Saturday morning, less than an hour after he killed his girlfriend, according to the police.
The player was identified as Jovan Belcher, 25, said Darin Snapp, a spokesman for the Kansas City Police Department, and his girlfriend was identified as Kasandra Perkins, 22.
The NFL community was in shock after hearing the tragic news of Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher, who committed suicide at the team's practice facility Saturday morning after he fatally shot his girlfriend.
There was an outpouring of emotion around the NFL. Here are a few tweets from current players.
The Chiefs' Sad List Of Tragedies Includes Another Murder-Suicide from Yahoo! Sports
Saturday's tragic news that Jovan Belcher murdered his girlfriend before killing himself summoned the painful memory of another murder-suicide involving a member of the Kansas City Chiefs organization.
On Sept. 15 1980, former Chiefs lineman Jim Tyrer murdered his wife Martha at home before taking his own life.
The Kansas City Chiefs have had their share of tragedies on and off the field since the inception of the franchise in 1960.
Stone Johnson, RB
Johnson, an Olympic sprinter from Grambling, was a rookie blocking on a kickoff return when he fractured a vertebra in his neck during a preseason game against the Oilers on Aug. 30, 1963. The 23-year-old died 10 days later.
Tragedy Leaves More Questions from FOX Sports
"First and foremost, God. Family and friends just keeping me focused, coaches and just everyone," Belcher said in an interview with KCChiefs.com, the team's news website, on Nov. 21.
At 25, Belcher appeared to have achieved all his dreams, professionally and personally. Eleven days later, Kansas City police allege Belcher shot and killed his girlfriend, Kasandra Michelle Perkins, 22, before going to the Chiefs practice facility at Arrowhead Stadium and fatally turning the gun on himself as team personnel pleaded with him to stop.
Arrowhead Stadium Will Feel Weird On Sunday from The Herald
The obvious question is whether the game should even be played, given that the pain is so fresh and the emotional state that the Kansas City organization and the team's fans have to be in right now. The NFL decreed that it will be played as scheduled at 1 p.m..
That feels somewhat mercenary, although I'm OK with it. I don't think postponing the game a few days would make things any better.
But Arrowhead Stadium - where the Chiefs haven't won all season - will be a weird place Sunday. How do you acknowledge the deaths? How will the Kansas City players react? What sort of emotional boomerang will the Panthers feel?
Murder is a horrifying thing, and when it's coupled with the equally confusing concept of suicide and the complications that stem from that, the world becomes in interesting and hard place to digest. We all know that Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher murdered his girlfriend and mother of their child and then drove to a public place to commit suicide. But the folks at CBS Sports gave you the information you really wanted.
What is Jovan Belcher's fantasy status?
Carolina Panthers/ KC Chiefs NFL Week 13 Preview from Examiner.com
Earlier this week, I had written a rough draft of this preview article wondering how many dozens of fans would care about this game, including in the home towns of Kansas City and Charlotte, North Carolina. It was full of sarcastic jokes about the Chiefs and how bad they've looked this season. The Chiefs have made themselves an easy target as the butt of jokes across the country.
Now, after Saturday morning, there will be a macabre tone to the game with people wondering how the Chiefs will respond to what happened to their teammate. Even more importantly, how would Head Coach Romeo Crennel, who was present when Belcher shot himself, be able to coach an NFL team just 24 hours later?
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