Atlanta-area woman Donna Kristofak was afraid that her ex-husband, who was serving time for threatening to kill her, would do something to harm her, again, once he was released from prison, so she went to the courts. Her ex, John Kristofak, had cut a deal that shortened his five-year prison sentence to seven months, allowing him to serve the rest on probation, and Donna wanted it on court records that she feared for her life.
She told the judge that he would kill her if released, and the judge, who offered her sympathy, said the best she could do was issue a "no contact" order, and she promised to throw John in jail if he so much as called Donna.
About two and a half months after that, Donna was murdered.
Joe had made good on his previous threats and allegedly stabbed her to death in her garage. He's been arrested for her murder.
When the judge found out what had happened, she commented that "you cannot predict human behavior", and drew a parallel between the questions of "why" surrounding the Sandy Hook massacre and Donna and John's case.
There is, however, a major difference between these two circumstances. One murderer threatened to kill, left harassing, violent, and sexually explicit messages for his intended victim, planted posters in her yard accusing her of vile things, and chased her around a Walmart parking lot with a butcher's knife and suicide note. The other just showed up one day at an elementary school and opened fire.
John said what he was going to do, and he supposedly did it. Doesn't get any more predictable than that, does it. Donna saw it coming and even confirmed with the judge, “May I ask, your honor, that it is on the record that I fear for my life?” The judge said it was. I'm surprised she didn't see the very clearly written writing on the wall.
Had John not been able to shorten his sentence by four years and five months, Donna would still be alive today. But because his actions didn't worry anyone else other than his victim, he was released on probation.
Donna told the court that a piece of paper, the "no contact" order, wouldn't stop him from killing her, and it apparently only took him a matter of weeks to make good on his promise.
Hopefully, in the future, if someone like Donna makes a plea for their life, their wanna-be killer won't be released early.
What do you think of this case?
Photo via Walt Stoneburner/Flickr