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Katlin Violette murder 1/12/2007 Clayton, NC *Her father, John Patrick Violette, has been charged, possibly has mental illness*

Katlin Violette

The picture below is of John Patrick Violette, a man accused of a most heinous, unthinkable act: the deapitation murder of his 4 year old daughter. What a horrible shock for the mother. She came home from work and found her child decapitated and husband gone. She called 911, which I am sure was the hardest thing she has ever had to to. Very few details have been released yet, but I am sure there will be more information soon. The father was quite easy to find apparently, but just following the money! Credit card receipts led police to a hotel in Washington, DC, where he was arrested and will be in jail until extradition happens. I would figure that would happen in the next week.

John Patrick Violette

Police arrest dad after 4-year-old girl found decapitated
4 Year Old Girl Murdered – Father Suspected
Clayton Father Arrested in Daughter’s Decapitation
4-Year-Old Decapitated; Cops Seek Father
N.C. man suspected of decapitating daughter
Father Of Slain Clayton Girl Arrested
Federal Agents Arrest North Carolina Man Suspected of Decapitating His 4-Year-Old Daughter
Child’s Murder Stuns Clayton Neighborhood


50 Responses

  1. Son of a bitch

  2. The family lived 5 doors down from me, I saw the little girl and the mother often, although I didn’t know them well. I was told by the neighbor who found the mother on the front porch crying while waiting for the police to come, that the body of the little girl was in the hallway and her severed head was in the trash can…I didn’t know the father well, but he would wave when you drove by, and he said “Hello” to me in the street..he seemed to be a nice guy. Certainly nobody here, saw this coming!
    They were actually very religious people, who went to church ever Sunday!
    Just goes to show you, that anyone can turn into a “Psycho”..This is a tragedy, and I don’t think our community will ever get over it! Most of all I feel so bad for the mother, she’ll never be alright.
    The mother doesn’t have life Insurance for the little girl either, so our neighborhood is taking donations for her funeral..the whole situation is so sad!

  3. Bonnie I’m so glad you have this web site!
    That S.O.B!!!!!!!!! I just found out about this case and it has me on the verge of losing my lunch!! I’m soo sad, but I’m struggling here, trying to keep my cool, since I’m at work. This is just horrible…I have a 4 year old son and I probably would go insane for the rest of my life…I just want to see the mother and give her a hug, the suffering must be unbareable! I consider myself a Christian but honestly can you forgive somebody after THIS!!!
    Kaitlin is in Heaven but she already was an Angel here on Earth…rest in peace, little girl 😦

  4. Hi Bonnie, I actually live in Clayton, where this murder took place. I work at a local daycare and Little Kaitlin used to go to our daycare. I wished I could understand what made this man do what he did. I just simply can not understand. I know the mother and I can not even imagine what she could possibly be going through. The community is sending stuffed animals and flowers and leaving at the house. People are setting up funds to help the mother. This is a sad tragedy that has happened in the community. Whoever reads these blogs, just pray for the mother. She needs our prayers. Her life will never be the same…..

  5. […] Posts Update: Michelle Young murderMichelle Young murder 11/04/06 Wake County, NCKatlin Violette murder 1/12/07 Clayton, NC Update: William “Ben” Ownby *found alive* also! Shawn Damian Hornbeck *found alive*Denita Smith […]

  6. What a sick fuckin’ asshole, the first thing I thought of when I heard this story on Friday night was that somebody should go intercept this prick’s extradition and then hole up in a warehouse somewhere and go to work on this asshole w/ a welding torch for about 36 hours and then I thought that of course would make someone just as sick as him, what a fucking catch-22, overall this just makes me disgusted and will probably haunt me for a long while to come, let’s not forget that this sick fuck will get his retribution on Judgement Day and that his sweet little Angel is in Heaven as I write this and completely at Peace.
    Fuck you John Patrick Violette and may you burn in hell for eternity!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!11

  7. I have known John and Amber since before they were married. John was a brand new Christian and love the Lord, he was “on fire” in fact. I have been told that his love for the Lord was apparent as recent as a couple of weeks ago. John has always been a kind and gentle man, one of great compassion and he was soft-spoken. Everyone who knows him, family and friends alike are shell-shocked. His family and friends still love him, though devastated by what he has done. Spewing such venom only hurts his family all the more. John is truly sick, terribly so. An insanity plea will not be an excuse, it will be the fact of the matter. We grieve the loss of both John and Katlin. And for those who can’t image how those who know him can still love him….imagine your dearest loved one doing such a thing and losing their mind. You would be cut to the quick and would grieve the most profound grief for the rest of your life, but you would pity your loved one and the fact that for the rest of their life, if they were even able to understand it, that they had killed the most dear person to their heart, in the most egregious way. John Violette is a man to be most pitied, not hated. And Amber is a woman to be held up with compassion and support without the ranting against her husband, praying always for her. Katlin is with Jesus and will never hurt again…

  8. This is the saddest story I have ever heard. I feel extremely sorry for the mother, I cannot imagine what she is going through.
    Rest in peace little Angel!

  9. AM, sorry that offended you but I am just human and of course it was a knee jerk reaction, I am quite sure that this is horrible for the Mother and her Friends and Family, but I still have to say that although I myself am a Christian, I am also human and I cannot find it in myself at this moment to feel sorry for this bastard or for his state of mind at the time of the tragedy, he is truly sick and as of his so called love for the Lord that was so apparent as recent as a few weeks ago, I think it is a total crock of shit, sorry but insane or not insane, Christian or not, I am sick of people making excuses for such acts that unfortunately have become far to damn common in the sick twisted country that we live in,
    I reiterate something needs to be done so people can’t just say that they had a momentary lapse of sanity or some kind of fugue state bullshit excuse.

  10. I must concur with grassrootsguerilla.

    We have made far too many excuses of those you no longer respect their families, the laws and their country. No one can love the Lord and commit such an act!! The new wave of “it’s not your fault” has in initiated many crimes with a way out. It is time for people to speak out and say WEO MORE!!!

  11. Let me finish what I started with hitting the word “submit”.

    We have made far too many excuses of those who no longer respect their families, laws and their country. Again, no one can love the Lord or profess to be a Christian and commit such acts!

    It is time for people to stand up for their rights as parents, those of love God, and citizens of the United States and say “WE WILL NOT TOLERATE THIS ANYMORE”!!

    I was raised on a farm and here is a lesson I learned about animals that have rabies. They do not get well! Because of their actions, there are many criminals who fit this description.

  12. JM and guerilla, I still contend that if it was someone you knew and loved, it would not be a crock of ****. I would have been the first one to have cheerfully sent Andrea Yates to the chair. I have had to re-think that since this tragedy. Mental illness is real, it’s debilitating and devastating. As the daughter of a woman who committed suicide on March 1, 2006 by stepping in front of a train, I can tell you that I have experienced mental illness in my own family. And you don’t know how bad it is until it’s too late. And even if you did know what might be coming, what do you do? John’s family had no idea what he was going through, even though he had begun saying strange things in the last couple of weeks. What if they *had* suspected the worst? Who would they have gone to? Hi, uh, my husband’s saying strange things and I think he might kill someone… They would have been sent home with a pat on the back just like we were when we tried to get help for my mother. There’s no help for that kind of thing until major damage is done and then it’s too late.

    I attended Katlin’s funeral today. People are still struggling to understand. But *everyone* who knows John, knows that he has lost his mind. He was the kindest, most helpful and tenderhearted man you would ever want to meet. His wife desperately wants people to know this. It comforts her when people do know this. I will say nothing more about this since minds are made up. Just know that it’s a dagger in the heart of everyone close to this child when you speak ill of her father, John’s in-laws included. It’s amazing to me that those who are so appalled by what he has done (as they should be) are willing to state that they would love to perform all sorts of the cruelest torture on him. They are no different than he is, save that they are in their right minds….That to me is frightening.

  13. JM…you are just as screwed up as the father.

  14. Excuse me NOT JM(I apologize)….I meant to say AM is screwed up. This whole thing has gotten me so emotional since I’ve heard this story. These are our precious little children. YES MAY THE DAD ROT IN HELL FOREVER.

  15. grassrootsguerilla you claim to be Christian but yet you are trash talking the father instead of praying for him! I also know both John and Amber and they are both loving people. I firmly believe that John has been possessed with demons. The Bible calls for us to support our brothers and sisters in Christ. Although I do not understand why he did this I will continue to pray for John.

  16. AM, Was there not any signs of this mental illness prior to this? I am also from the Clayton area and find it so hard to believe that you can just “snap” in a few hours. The mother was with them at lunch and then comes home to discover her poor little angel dead. What transpired in those few hours that he could think of something so unimaginable?

    They thing that bothers me most about this whole crime is the thoughts that were going through Kaitlin’s mind and the suffering she endured. Someone she loved and trusted so much betrayed her. A child is innocent and there’s nothing that a 4 year old can do to make someone do something this heinous.

    People have got to start being accountable. I know mental illness is just that, an illness, but come on, this is an innocent child.

    The only joy in this whole thing is that Kaitlin is now with Jesus.

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  18. Oh -well, What I’m trying to do is not working! My heart is broken for this little girl and her mother! I hope that bastard burns in hell!!! The only thing that makes me feel better, is knowing he’ll be killed in prison or locked in a cage in solitary! We have to pray for the mommy!

  19. I don’t feel sorry for the Daddy, and it’s hard for me to beleive it hurts Amber when we talk ill of him

  20. JB, I have been researching this morning on schizophrenia, which one local forensic psychologist has postulated in an interview on the news that John appears to have. I will list some of these symptoms and then share with you some indications that John fits this mold. You click through and read the info yourself at

    “Problems focusing or paying attention, difficulty processing information, confusion, and fragmented thoughts.”
    John was known to be “slow” by those around him. A great big heart, but a little slow. This symptom explains why he was so, though no one knew at the time that it might have indicated a mental illness since he was such a kind, sweet and helpful guy.

    “Disordered (confused) thinking and speech that does not make any sense. Examples include abruptly responding to questions, not being able to respond with enough information, or always giving a one-word reply to questions.”
    In the two weeks before his crime, John began speaking strangely, with odd comments and disconnected thoughts.

    “These usually involve hearing voices, but they can involve all the senses—seeing, tasting, touching, hearing, or smelling something that is not there.”
    “Seeming to talk to people who are not present or believing things that you know are false.”
    John was seen by neighbors carrying on a heated conversation with himself in his car, and up into his house the day of the murder. They first had thought he was talking into a cell phone, but later they agreed that he was talking to himself.

    “Symptoms of schizophrenia usually emerge during adolescence or early adulthood and may appear suddenly or develop gradually. When symptoms develop gradually, they may be misdiagnosed with other conditions with similar symptoms, such as bipolar disorder or substance abuse (which commonly occurs with schizophrenia).”
    “People with schizophrenia are likely to develop other social and physical conditions (such as homelessness) or have additional disorders (such as substance abuse and depression).”
    “Have a substance abuse problem. It is not yet clear whether the abuse triggers schizophrenia or whether a person with schizophrenia is more likely to have a substance abuse problem.”
    John had a history of drug use before he came to know Christ. It could be that the drugs altered his brain and caused schizophrenia or as one article I read stated, he could have “been attempting to self-medicate to get some relief from the mental illness”.

    “Stressful events such as emotional trauma or substance abuse can trigger symptoms of schizophrenia in those who are at risk for developing the disease.”
    John was working very long hours at work and had quit his job the day before he killed his daughter. I would imagine that his job was stressful and that’s why he quit and could have been the reason that he began to lose it in the weeks before.

    Theories of the causes of schizophrenia are varied, from fetal starvation, to drug use, to having a father who is over 50 at the time of conception. But all agree that there are cerebral abnormalities involved and they can be seen through the latest imaging technology that are now available.

    I have tried to find commentary from a Christian perspective on this illness. Some think demons are involved, and perhaps they play a part and prey on the ones they know are vulnerable. Some believe it is strictly an illness and the only help is medication. I don’t know that we can possibly know on this side of eternity.

  21. Chris, that’s a lovely picture you posted. Though Katlin is in her glorified body now, in full maturity and in the presence of the Lord.

    I saw Amber before the service and told her that we know that the real John didn’t do this, that we know that he belongs to the Lord and is saved, that we know that he is ill and needs help. I recalled good memories we had of him. She hugged me tight and repeatedly told me “Thank you”. She, more than anyone else would be the one to be angered at him, but she knows he is sick, that he didn’t know what he was doing. She will probably look back once she has studied on schizophrenia and be able to recall other things that she didn’t understand before that now make sense, as will the rest of John’s family. At the funeral, Amber’s own father said that the John we have read about in the papers is not the John that we know and love, dearly. If the people closest to him still love him and know that he is not this evil monster but a man who is ill and is in need of help, then I would hope that the onlookers of the world would consider that and give it some creedance. 1 Peter 4:8 states “Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.” There is only one unforgiveable sin and that’s the rejection of Jesus Christ as Savior and King of the world. John is not guilty of that sin, but I imagine many of those who rail against him are. Even as heinous as his sin is, it is a forgiveable one. His family’s love, including Amber and her parents, has covered his sin and will continue to do so, despite their grief over little Katlin’s being taken from them.

    Chris, we all deserve to burn in hell. Romans 3:23 declares
    “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”.

    2 Timothy 3:1-5: “But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them.”
    Are you a lover of self or money? Are you boastful, proud, or abusive? I think hoping that someone would burn in hell falls into that category. Were you disobedient to your parents? Are you ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, or brutal?
    Do you love what is good? Are you treacherous, rash, conceited, a lover of pleasure rather than a lover of God ?
    Do you have a form of godliness but deny the power of true godliness? Everyone of us could answer yes to any one of these questions at some point of our lives. If you have not repented of these things, seen YOUR sin as the sin that nailed Jesus to the cross and asked him for forgivess, then you are worse off than John, and for eternity at that. For your own good, repent and forgive and love.

  22. I really don’t know what to say! Forgivness is something I need to work on in my life! What his family does is none of my bussiness! I don’t want to think about this anymore!!!!

  23. AM,
    I am a Christian myself and I know we all fall short of the glory of God, but I will admit that I would have a hard time forgiving this man if I were Amber. But as we know, we are forgiven for our sins, no matter what severity. A sin is a sin is a sin. He is our eternal father and he loves us no matter what. That’s awesome!

    God knows what it’s like to lose a child, Jesus was sent so we can have eternal life.

    Being a parent myself, I don’t think I could be that strong and that would make me selfish and that’s a sin.

    That’s why each of us should strive to be like Christ.

    I know John is sick, but this whole situation just breaks my heart.

  24. There are o many things about this whole scenario I find disturbing. If he wasn’t in his right mind, then how was he able to purchase a plane ticket, calmly board a plane, disembark from it, then go to a hotel and check in. I haven’t seen anything suggesting he was screaming uncontrollably and quoting from the Bible on the plane….that kind of behavior didn’t present itself until the police were knocking at his door…my point being is that he was able to alter his behavior enough to appear normal at those times….just hours after cutting his child’s head from her body. He changed his clothes after killing her, the search warrant posted online noted blood on the soap dispenser and at the sink….so he was coherent enough to know he has better clean up and wash the blood off his hands before presenting himself in public. Also – he waited until just after his wife left for lunch to commit this heinous crime – why not before she arrived, if he is so out of touch with reality. It sounds to me like he planned in advance by quitting his job the day before, he took steps to clean up afterward, nd he was able to conduct himself rationally enough to get to the airport and get on a plane without all the irrational yelling and screaming….he didn’t trot that out until the police arrived. It seems very suspicious. IMHO, he did this to hurt his wife in the deepest way possible. This is my impression, I realize those of you who associated with him are reeling from shock, but isn’t it possible this man has been perpetrating an immense fraud on all of you for some time?

  25. KM, I totally concur and as far as AM I never said that I would follow through with torturing anybody but that when one hears something like this that it is just a thought that ran through my head, and also I would like to say that you really need to get off your soap box and realize that humans are just that humans and yes we do sin and fall short of the Glory of our Lord and if that wasn’t the case than Jesus would never had to endure what he did so long ago on Golgotha for us all, and I understand that maybe my words could hurt the Family and I apologize if that was the case, but as far as myself and probably JM are concerned I say there is definitely no love lost for poor old John from me. va, you also should remember something “Thou Shalt Not Judge, Lest Ye Be Judged Accordingly” and before you even get the chance to type it, I am not judging John or anyone else, that is up to The Lord Almighty, I am just expressing my disgust at the state of affairs we are currently living in and the act of this heinous creature who should be glad that I am not the one judging him.

  26. I too know this family and have to agree with AM. Unless you truly know this family it is unfair to speculate about how they should or should not feel. I had the fortune of getting to see this child almost everyday. She was amazing and I will never forget her. I understand the misfortune and confusion that revolves around all of this, but Amber has taught me a lesson in faith. She is stronger than I ever could be. When all of this happened I was so angry, but after visiting with her at the funeral I realized I do not have that right. If she doesn’t feel that way about her own husband who ended the life of their only child, how do I have that right. She is an amazing woman and all you can truly do to help is pray for peace for her in the coming days. The situation is what it is. All we can do now is pray for the family.


    Illness cited in child’s beheading
    Family says father’s schizophrenia had seemed under control
    (Raleigh) News & Observer

    CLAYTON – A decade before police charged John Patrick Violette with beheading his 4-year-old daughter, he began battling an illness that put voices in his head, his family said.

    Violette’s loved ones are now replaying every scene they remember from a stretch in the mid-1990s when doctors at a mental hospital in California first told Violette and his family that he suffered from paranoid schizophrenia, his sister Denise Violette said.

    “I look back and I think, `We should have never let him out of that place,’ ” said Denise Violette, John’s older sister who helped care for him then.

    The schizophrenia — a brain disorder that often causes its victims to lose their sense of reality and to hear and see things that aren’t there — struck Violette in his mid-20s, long before he married Amber Violette and fathered Katlin.

    It’s unclear whether his wife of eight years knew of his illness; Amber’s father, Thomas Marks, has said that John’s outbreak caught them all off-guard.

    As far as Violette’s family can tell, John Violette managed to quiet the turmoil in his head for the better part of a decade. Schizophrenia is sometimes marked by long stretches of seeming dormancy that can end in dramatic breaks with reality, experts say.

    Police won’t discuss whether Violette’s mental illness factored into Katlin’s slaying. Violette’s lawyer, Robert Denning sent Violette to Dorothea Dix Hospital in Raleigh last week so psychiatrists can determine whether he is competent to stand trial.

    “He doesn’t seem to grasp what’s going on,” Denning said.

    Neighbors saw John Violette act erratically the afternoon that Katlin’s mother came home and found the child decapitated in the hallway of their home.

    Violette sped down their subdivision lane, whipping the car into their driveway. Neighbor Diana Narron said she saw him ranting as he rushed to the front door, “like somebody was talking to him in his head and he was talking back.” When U.S. marshals found him in a Washington hotel the next morning, he was shouting Scripture.

    John was always the gentle, tenderhearted one of the siblings, his sister said. He loved working with his hands and apprenticed as a carpenter after high school, his sister said. He also experimented with drugs, Denise Violette said, though his sister never knew which kinds.

    Within months of his release from the mental hospital, John Violette settled with relatives in the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill area. He eventually regained some semblance of a normal life, Denise Violette said. He attended Cary’s Colonial Baptist Church, where he met Amber Marks.

    Katlin was born in 2002. By then, the family had a home in a new subdivision in Clayton. They relished time together, making it a point to meet for lunch at the house each day.

    John Violette was so tender toward Katlin he couldn’t spank her, Denise Violette said. He logged her journey with Christ in a journal; his other sister read from it at Katlin’s funeral.

    “Even now, I think I will wake up and this will be someone else’s family,” Denise Violette said.

  28. One question – did the mother know of John’s past and his struggles with schizophrenia? The way the article was written, it sounds like she didn’t. It also sounds like they tried to sweep it under the rug and discouraged him to seek the help he so desperately needed. That was very ignorant on their part.
    If his family hid this from her – they did her a great disservice. She should have known about his past & then she could have decided if this was something she could handle.
    Hopefully he will be committed to a mental institution or the rest of his life so he cannot harm anyone else.

  29. This story saddens me greatly. The reaction of the people saddens me also. NOBODY WINS IN THESE SITUATIONS. THE BABY IS DEAD. THE DAD IS SICK AND WILL NEVER RECOVER. THE MOM’S LIFE AS SHE KNEW IT IS COMPLETELY GONE. This mom must greive for her child, her husband, and herself (as she used to be). She can’t just turn off the love she felt for her husband. She is no longer the mother she used to be, nor the wife she used to be. My heart breaks for them all! I pray for her, the husband,their church family, all the little kids at the daycare, their community, mom and dad’s co workers and us. All I am thinking is “oh my goodness” God help us all!!!!

  30. As I have been reading through these articles I’m also sick and shocked. I haven’t even heard about this until today when a friend wrote to tell me she had been a missionary with the grandparents of the little girl (I’m not sure whether they were John’s or Amber’s parents)
    While I don’t concur with the language and the kind of offensive behavior at least one person is expressing out of the kind of deep, gut feeling that arises in any natural human being so repulsed by such a story as this, I also can identify with the emotion that would motivate one to curse, not bless, what this man has done.
    I agree that no matter how sick and insane a person becomes there is nothing on earth other than the devil himself having overtaken the mind of a father that could have caused him to commit such a horrific act.
    The lack of “emotion” or the idea that “we still love him, even though he’s done such an unspeakable thing” is very similar to what some Baptist churches are doing (is it in Austrailia?) hanging up signs saying “Jesus loves Osama”
    I think we need to get a handle on what “love” means and realize Jesus Himself said anyone who harms a hair on the head of a little one who believes in Him would be better off with a millstone hung around his neck and cast into the sea.
    I agree that there can’t be excuses made for people who act out such “insanity” or we’d be able to excuse every kind of murderous act that is going on in this world by explaining it away and excusing the behavior of people who do things like this….for example, how about Islamic Jihad warriors who believe they were doing “God’s Will” while flying planes into the twin towers and robbing life from so many innocent people?
    I’m sure to many their behavior was “excusable” … in fact what they did was celebrated by hundreds of thousands if not millions of “enemies” dancing in the streets chanting “allah” over and over, praising him for VICTORY over their ENEMIES! How insane can that be?
    The man should be put to death to spare the world from ever having him harm another person. I must say quite honestly if it were my husband, son or brother who did such a thing somebody would have to restrain me from carrying out the sentence myself…when I say that, and believe me I love each one of them, I mean I’d have been the one sitting in jail for having murdered someone because I’d have dones so fully of sound mind, knowing exactly what I’d done. I can barely imagine what could keep that mother and even the child’s grandparents and any siblings from doing the same….love or not.
    This is an act worthy of a death sentence if ever there’s been one in the history of mankind. Anyone can plead “temporary insanity”…I guess my greatest shock is how on earth everyone could have allowed this man to get to a point where he’d have done such a thing without a clue as to what was ticking away inside of his brain?
    the only thing I can even think could be some “reason” might be a brain anurism…which for real causes people to completely go off into a rage without knowing at all what they’ve done…but if it were the case most likely he’d have been dead by now….how did he find his way to DC and KNOW to HIDE from authorities? If he’d come back from the temporary insanity, wouldn’t he have taken his own life realizing what it is he’d done?

  31. As I just finished the story about the Violette family, it makes more sense to me what happened, though for sure it doesn’t excuse or change my gut reaction to what went on. I do know about schizophrenia and realize there is such a thing as a split (break) in a person’s mind that can’t be explained or understood by anyone…it’s also not really “treatable” by anyone who is honest enough to recognize in reality it’s not.
    Like others on this site, I have to also ask myself how a mother could have left her child with a man prone to act out such behavior…
    If the man had come home talking to himself and in some kind of a rage, who had the child at that time? Was she alone in the house? Who would have left the child in his care if he was acting out such insanity?
    There are a lot of unanswered questions in that article. One most obvious is whether or not Amber knew of her husband’s “illness” and why anyone in the family would have allowed him to ever at any time been alone with a little child who could have been subjected to his bizarre behavior…for one I find it difficult to believe there were no symptoms ever over the whole eight years.
    Obviously the neighbors had witnessed his behavior was bizarre that day as he came home from wherever it was just before killing his daughter…was there anyone at all “at home” when he entered the house ranting? Besides the little one who was defenseless against a man gone mad?

  32. AM, you are right about much of what you are concerned about having experienced in your own family a mother who acted out of depression, possibly a drug related “temporary insanity” that ended up with her ending her life.
    I lived also with a mother who attempted suicide more than once, was being treated by doctors who continued giving her mind controlling drugs to sedate her. At the same time, my dad was continuing to act out of his own “addictions” that weren’t considered to be serious enough to force him into any situation that would have brought real healing to him or my mom or our family.
    He kept numbing himself to reality through abuse of alcohol and other means of escape (like his “sexual addiction”)
    In reality and quite simply had my mother been counselled by wiser and more caring people she’d have found help to have escaped such a terrible and abusive marriage so that her children (six of us) didn’t have to experience the fall out and end up battling our own demons as adults.
    Still, I really can’t imagine anyone in my family, regardless of how nuts there were in truth, acting out in such a way to harm a single one of us other than what damage had been done to us simply watching them acting out on each other.
    I honestly from my heart, having known so many people in my life who are mentally ill and being surrounded by them in my own family, believe there is an excuse for what happened here.
    Neglect, yes. Denial on the part of a whole family, yes.
    The more I read right now, the more I must myself say that not only was John Violette responsible for the death of his daughter, but if it’s true that he had been treated at one time and diagnosed with that condition and the information withheld from his wife then the family is partly to blame.
    It might sound cruel to you, but to say “where would they go? Who would have helped him?”
    With his history of insanity? How about where he’s gone “after the fact” and the very doctors who are now being asked to “defend him?”
    Would not an ounce of prevention have been better than a hundred or a thousand pounds of CURE?
    You are right, there is no CURE and can be never again hope for that family to be WHOLE. Still, I do believe there is MERCY and GRACE for anyone who truly humbles himself to receive it…that means a lot of heartfelt repentance (change) on the part of an entire family…not more cover ups to protect their own flesh and blood or denial that would have allowed such a madman to have been protected while his own child ended up his victim.
    Sorry to be so blunt…we are talking MADNESS here, there is no EUPHEMISM one can come up with to define his behavior in any other way.
    Many, many people in this country especially are mentally ill, not all are MAD and to compare what you mother did to herself with what John Violette did to his daughter lumps them all into one and the same.
    No, not all mentally ill people act out through such violent behavior towards other members of society.
    I must agree with whoever reminded us of what happens when a dog becomes infected with rabies. No matter how much we love that animal, we end up putting him down to prevent him from biting even the hands that feed him.
    Maybe John has mad cow disease? It’s possible, someone should probably check out that possibility…maybe even rabies. It might then help some of us better understand.
    To say that he can one day be perfectly loving and kind to his family and suddenly “snap” in such a way to behead his own child…personally, if that happened to me and I realized what I’d done, I would have preferred that society taken steps to put me out of my misery before I was forced to wake up to “know” and have to spend the rest of my life living with the reality.
    Any person who comes to his senses and has even hope to be “normal” or “healed” would most likely feel the same way. If he doesn’t, then he should never again be permitted to come outside of a padded cell or be alone again in a room even with a “professional psychiatrist” … how is it he can control his violent outburst now? Why is he not acting out on everyone else around him at present? Or was he not when they found him? None of this makes sense…of course how does insanity ever make sense? How does evil ever make sense? How does anyone who is a mass rapist or murderer get punished when we realize one must be crazy to do something like that? They always have a “reason” and an “excuse”…usually sexual abuse as children.

  33. AM and all others…sorry if it seems I’m dominating this site right now, please forgive me anyone having to wade through my responses. Right now, I am writing to you, AM, because in my heart I am listening very closely to your words and what it is you are saying…believe me I’m not in any way without mercy or compassion and am trying with everyone else to come to grips with such a heinous crime as personally I’ve never in my life heard of a father committing against his own child.
    To make it anything other than “crime” will jeopardize our entire justice system…I have to say this to you. I am a committed Christian, a missionary, I’ve spent my life taking relief to children (orphans and very poverty stricken people) living in developing nations. I’ve seen people from every kind of situation, with all kinds of mental illnesses and I must tell you, I’ve never witnessed in my life anywhere something like this happening to a child at the hands of their own father…apart from what is done to babies in their mother’s wombs (as in emerging and having their brains sucked out by physicians who believe they are acting out of “compassion” for a mother who’s “right” to her body would be otherwise violated if she were forced to give birth to a child she doesn’t want…even if the children had fully developed and could be adopted by people who would be more than happy to raise them as their own children.
    In a sense, we live in a world gone mad. There are all kinds of excuses made for anyone who commits heinous crimes against God and man as we find some reason, excuse to “cover up” what we can’t deal with in way of NEED FOR CHANGE whatever that might mean to any of us.
    It is, unfortunately, far too often “good Christian people” who are most to blame for “covering up” what others who are more honestly able to face of such bizarre and insane behavior would have recognized immediately as such and acted in a way that could have PREVENTED this kind of thing from happening to an innocent child.
    Had the family been brutally honest with themselves they would have recognized and remembered BEFORE such a crisis took place in the mind of a man who obviously was slipping back into a pattern of behavior they indeed were familiar with. I do understand how easy it is to turn and look away.
    As I have said already, I come from a family where mental illness is more the “norm” than exception to the rule. While we were desperately seeking solutions, answers, help for our parents, my siblings and I remained at a loss when it came to what we should do.
    Finally, as the oldest child, I did what none of the others had the guts to do and called the police. Instead of choosing to cover up for my father’s abuses, I chose to protect my youngest siblings who were being subjected to a pattern of behavior I realized had been most hurtful to me BEFORE conversion in my own life took me into Christian circles and I had a chance to witness what NORMAL human behavior LOOKS LIKE.
    While I can definiltey identify with what the family is going through right now, how much they have loved their son (husband) etc…there is some kind of sickness there within the entire family (co dependency perhaps?) that has led to such an “acting out” on the part of a member who obviously could no longer face or control the demons he faced within himself…so it was indeed their very LOVING responsibility to have committed him to a hospital long before NOW.
    I have to agree with anyone else on this site who’s deepest gut reaction of horror is what protects the innocent victims in a society that could easily end up subjected to this kind of “madness” as becoming something “curable” or “treatable” by “self made gods” who believe themselves capable of doing something God Himself didn’t do for a world gone mad…remember the flood? Noah? Sodom and Gamorrah?
    This is, as someone pointed out to you, the kind of “sick” approach to it all that has allowed the madness in the name of “tolerance” or even “love” … it’s one thing for LOVE to COVER a multitude of sins..quite another to COVER UP a multitude of sins.
    We lost our daughter to a drunk driver only six months ago. The man had been drunk for years, we went to try to find his family because we started to think about what “might have been” had there been a wife and children who may not have “known” what he’d done to our daughter.
    He was Hispanic and we’d found out that his body was still unclaimed in the hospital where our daughter’s had been laid most likely near his in the morgue until she was released to a funeral home to prepare her for viewing.
    Our whole family prayed. In no way did we hold responsible the family of the man who killed our child. In fact, because we have worked as missionaries in Latin America for years our own children speak Spanish fluently and one is even a doctor now who chose to study medicine in Mexico because of her love for the Latino culture.
    None of us were pointing a finger. We went out searching for the family of the man who murdered our daughter that night..and YES it was MURDER.
    He didn’t “mean” to kill her. What we were told by his friends was that very day he’d gone to get them to go with him to a bar where he went every night to drink himself to death. They warned him, begged him to stop and said “you will kill yourself one day.”
    His response? “If I die then it’s God’s will and my fate”
    Our daughter, who is fluent in Spanish, took out a picture of her little sister who’d been killed by this madman.
    She showed it to his friends and said, “the problem is, he took my sister with him”
    There is a “reason” why his friends didn’t have power to stop him. Why they chose instead to let him drive away that day and every other knowing he was a “lethal weapon” on the highway, that he’d kill himself and take others with him when he did.
    FEAR of EXPOSURE. They were all ILLEGAL
    They were AFRAID that in his being found out he’d take them down with him.
    Could that be the reason so many “cover up” for others in this world? Co dependency. It’s not the SAME as “healthy inter dependent relationships”
    What I am seeing in this whole situation is a family very much in need of REAL HEALING.
    You are right, they can NEVER BE WHOLE…they can, though be HEALED. It’s my prayer for us all that we might humble ourselves to realize how desperate we are.
    When something so horrific as this happens and people are jumping up to say, “he was a good christian man” is it any reason the “Gentile blaspheme the name of Christ?”
    Something very seriously wrong is going on behind the scenes…something nobody could deal with. Believe me when I say “been here done this” enough to “know.”
    God bless you for your compassion. From there, don’t confuse “sympathy for the devil” with the “Compassion of CHRIST” … there is a huge gap between the TWO.
    LOVE motivates us to MOVE to PREVENT not to wait until there is such crisis we are without HOPE TO HEAL.

  34. This will be my last posting on this site. My prayer is that one day possibly Amber will visit and read what’s written here, so I am writing to you, sweet sister…hopefully someone else will get hold of this and hand it to you when you are ready.
    As I have read this story, my heart is breaking, shattered, and i can only imagine what it is you are living through. I lost my nineteen year old “baby” as her life was ended by the careless hands of a drunk driver.
    For now, Amber, I’m going to write down only the words to a song God gave me many years before while praying for such a broken world as we live in, for a child who’d been sexually molested by his own “father”…so for now, please bear with me if you will and know my heart is beating in time with your own as you are hurting so deeply as even I cannot begin to imagine.

    My prayer for you has been that you find peace within yourself. That you realize God is not in any way to blame, He did not stand back silently that day watching without doing something any more than you or I would have.

    I have prayed as I’ve read through the postings on this site, some more cruelly and perhaps without sensativity to you reacting to your own grief (even my own reactions, forgive me if that is the case)

    What I want to say to you loudly and clearly is you are not in any way to BLAME…whatever it is that happened between you and John the day of your daughter’s death, YOU ARE NOT TO BLAME.

    You are in no way responsible or expected by the Lord to “cover up” or “protect” your husband, even if he is “sick” it’s not for you to do that for him.

    You are not EXPECTED to FORGIVE HIM for his crime apart from his begging from you that forgiveness…apart from for your own peace God is not requiring from you something HE Himself doesn’t do for the unrepentant.

    Remember Noah? Remember Lot?

    How grieved they were even wanting so much to save the people around them as they escaped with their own lives.

    Precious sister, do not allow anyone, no “minister” of the gospel or “do-gooder” in this world to lay on you a burden Jesus Himself did not take on…remember that when he faced his accusers He did pray forgiveness for the ones who “did not know” what they were doing…

    If you can find it within your heart to forgive, I would never tell you not to…on the other hand, if you are doing this only to “please” the people around you and believe it’s your “Christian duty” realize what others believe to be “Christian DUTY” might end up being the FARTHEST THING from reality as to how GOD HIMSELF sees…HE KNOWS YOUR HEART. Your deepest HEART…don’t be afraid to express that, nobody will fault you for being filled with RAGE toward a man who did this to your child.

    While Jesus hung on the cross and prayed for us all, our FATHER was filled with so much WRATH He has stored up to one day pour out on a whole world that could have done such a thing to His Own (Only BEGOTTEN) BELOVED SON who came here to SAVE US.

    Dear sister, don’t let anyone tell you that it’s wrong for you to feel a rage deeper than humanly any of us can imagine. If they do, they are themselves sickest of all people and without a clue as to WHO OUR FATHER IS…

    Please, don’t feel guilty for feeling such anger. PRAY that GOD will give you GRACE, YES! That grace is in NO way CHEAP..HE realizes what it is you are feeling, what you are going through…HE IS NOT TO BLAME.

    Don’t listen to the confusion all around you, take time to be alone with HIM and pray from your heart … I am not writing down the words to the song…you can contact me at any time and I will send you the CD itself…one called “A Time to Hea” my husband and I put together with friends who have suffered similar losses of children and spouses, parents, people we have loved so much.

    Run to JESUS, fall into HIS ARMS…listen ONLY TO HIS VOICE and don’t pay attention to all the voices around you telling you what you SHOULD DO or COULD DO better.

    HOLD ONTO HIM and trust from your heart HE IS HOLDING ONTO YOU…His love NEVER FAILS…what people attempt to tell us about HIS LOVE is very far from the reality and truth of WHO HE IS in deed and in truth…

    You are not bound by duty to any man…you are free to WALK with the SAME JESUS who delivered us from the hands of wicked men, from evil…please don’t believe what you are NOT hearing from the LORD HIMSELF.

    As well meaning as people can be, “let God be true and every man a liar”…YOU are NOT to blame…even if you knew your husband had lost his mind…his family should have been there all along to help you get him into a hospital.

    We so often confuse “covering with love” with “covering up” for the people we love. Amber, my prayers from deepest heart are that you might realize how much JESUS LOVES YOU….hold onto His promise and don’t be afraid of what any human says or thinks of you otherwise.

    What matters most is what matters most…How God Himself is with you and has seen everything from His own point of view. Nothing else will matter. JUSTICE is found only in PERFECT MERCY..not to let the evil get away with murder, rather to defend and protect the innocent victims who suffer at the hands of humans who fail to do our part. We can’t ever go back to change what was…we can though move forward and never look back to believe “there is a BIGGER PLAN, a BETTER PLACE” and YOU will be again joined to your precious little one ..

    God was with her in the moment of her death. JESUS SNATCHED HER SOUL up out of her body and carried her in HIS OWN ARMS all the way to a safe haven of rest she longs for you to enjoy WITH HER forever. EVEN NOW.

    love and blessings and prayers, from my heart to yours for real, sweet sister…my heart cries out with your own. Karen

  35. My e-mail contact for Amber or anyone who wants to write is I am in the process of finishing my own education in “Counseling” and am not interested in this for “personal gain” … my heart is breaking for a world as lost as this one. I’ve lived through one crisis after another, all that matters most to me right now is to find viable solutions and to apply them in such a way that REAL LASTING HEALING might be available to us and through us all.

  36. I used to work on death penalty cases. For the sake of the Violette family, I hope the prosecutor does not pursue the death penalty unless they want it. The best thing would be for John to plead guilty and for the DA to agree to life w/o parole and treatment for John’s illness. If the DA pursues the death penalty, Amber and other family members will have to testify about past mental illness, and the days leading up to the terrible day. It is not fun to be a witness at a trial, even more so when your husband’s life is on the line. May Amber be spared from such a situation.

  37. CALM DOWN PEOPLE!!!!!!!!!

  38. I cannot even imagine the pain that Amber is feeling. Being a mother myself, I think I would feel a tremendous amount of hate toward whoever butchered my child to death. I too cannot understand how he did not show any signs that something was wrong during their lunch together that day. Also, how could he contain exactly how “out of his mind” he was that day when he boarded an airplaine. It seems like a flight attendant or some other airport personnel would have seen just how out of whack he was acting, etc. There are still many unanswered questions to this case. No matter how many answers we get it still won’t bring back that sweet little girl.

  39. It is now August…does anyone know what has happened with this case?

  40. First off, I am not a christian. I believe in being the best person I can be for me. I don’t want to die or see anyone around me die, since to me, that’s the end. I don’t find comfort in thinking that Kaitlin is in a better place. It seems odd to me that most of these horrible crimes that parents commit against children come from religious families. Did John Violette do what he did more easily because he felt he knew Kaitlin would be in a better place? Andrea Yates did, and that crazy woman who stoned her kids.
    For all the christians out there, praying for John Violette, lets all hope for the death penalty. If there is a god, then he can decide what to do with him then!!
    I, too, would love to hear an update on this case.

  41. Dear Katie’s mom,

    I too have a daughter named Katelyn. When I heard of your loss I cried for you and your beautiful daughter. I still do…No words spoken,no tears enough can ever replace this beautiful child. Please know that many mothers grieve for you and with you and if you even need a helping hand just ask…It’s right here when you need it the most.

    Cheryl Lassiter-Paramedic
    Katie Mariah’s mom

  42. i am sorry your daughter..
    i am deaf girl.

  43. Just in case you were looking for an update to the case.

  44. Ok. So they have now said he was legally insane and cannot be held responsible? That’s horrendous. I still say put him in a mental institution for the remainder of his life, if not kill him. He’s no good to anyone any longer. They said he heard these voices in the past…who says he won’t hear them again? I sure as hell would not feel safe if he were anywhere near me.

  45. I think he is going to be committed for life.

  46. Thank you, Bonnie! It’s wonderful that you post FYI’s for people to learn what goes on in today’s society…

    I know how many people tend to lean on religion to cope, but I firmly believe that the time is way past due for justice, especially for our little, innocent, and defenseless little ones. While John will be kept away for his disease, I believe that his sister should be held accountable for talking her brother into refraining from taking the medication he needed to stay sane. My heart goes out to every mother who had to endure the unbearable;

    Does anyone think justice was served for Kaitlyn?

  47. All though I am a christen I have no second thought on praying
    for for that idit that killed that little girl. But I will be praying for the mom. I could not imagine going though what she has.

  48. i can not beleve this is so sad and heartbreaking me being a mother as well i went to school with john in jr high early 80s in huntington beach ca he was well dressed and smart very popular just like his sister she was very popular at o.v .h.s this is just a lot to take in i cant beleve this what happen to little johnny violette my thoughts and prayers go out to his wife and family be strong and move on with your lifes he is a sick human being let god take it from here you cant help him move on i know from experiance as well my brother is also in jail for doing the unthinkable not this radical but he has hurt young children move on treat them like they are nothing it is hard but you have two sorry in huntington beach california

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