Sandee Rozzo had spent two days being held hostage, beaten, and brutally raped.
And she knew the name of the man who had subjected her to the most horrifying experience of her life: Timothy "Tracey" Humphrey.
After all, they had (somewhat) dated in the past; at the very least, very close friends with benefits - even if it was done with reluctance on Sandee's part.
Sandee had filed criminal charges against Tracey and was only weeks away from having her day in Court. It had seemed to take forever to reach this point; what with Tracey's threats to do whatever it took to stay out of prison.
When Sandee was murdered in the 11th hour of July 5, 2002, friends, family, and even mere acquaintances pointed the finger at Humphrey.
As police begin to dig into Humphrey's history, they would learn about a man hell bent of things being done his way an no qualms about using violence and intimidation to get it.
In his newest book, Kill For MeVeteran true crime author M. William Phelps chronicles the story of Tracey Humphrey and how he convinced his young wife, Ashley, to kill a woman who could have possibly sent him to prison. Ashley, in turn, does the ad nauseum bit of "if it wasn't for him, I never would have done it." (Personal note here: how the hell does she know? Apparently she had it in her to do it. What's to same somebody might have pushed her buttons someday enough to do it without encouragement?)
It's an titillating story, filled with a sex, jealousy, revenge, and murder. Unfortunately, it's the first Phelps' book I've finished feeling a void.
There was too many unanswered questions.
For example, we're given only a (very) brief history on Sandee; not the typical, in-depth childhood to adulthood summaries we've come to love from Phelps. As a matter of fact, when it was all said and done, I never developed much of a bond (for lack of a better word) with Sandee and felt the sympathy you feel for most victims. (And I do not like that feeling!)
Again, the history of Tracey and Ashley is limited; the latter being the bettered detailed, even more so than Sandee's. However, I have give Phelps' a break on this as he explains why this is lacking in the epilogue.
Now that aside -
While Phelps doesn't give us what we've come to expect to him in terms of the nitty-gritty on everybody.
But one thing I do love - and that we've seen in several of Phelps' books - is the relating of letters between he and the killers, which most times shows them for the narcissistic, control-freaks they are. Needless to say, Phelps (nor Humphrey) did not fail readers here.
Irregardless of the fact I don't think this is the best of Phelps' books Kill For Me will still be in the top listing of 2010 true crime books so you don't want to miss it.