It is a story that is all too familiar. A stalker turns a person's life into a nightmare. In this case, he takes her life. 23 year old Alissa Blanton, who graduated in 2005 from DeSoto High School, tried to get an Order of Protection against 61 year old Roger Troy. Troy had been stalking Blanton since she worked as a waitress at Hooter's. On February 1, she showed the court numerous abusive emails and a four page letter to her husband from Troy, but the Judge refused to issue the Order immediately. Instead, he set a hearing for February 16. On February 8, Blanton was killed. An Order of Protection is hardly worth the paper it is printed on - it doesn't come with a bodyguard - but at least it brings the danger to the attention of the police. Why didn't the Judge issue it? He is quoted in a Florida paper as saying "he didn't have enough information". I guess he does now.
Laurie Waters is a reporter at KMOV-TV. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.