Apology accepted. I absolutely agree that the case — like a lot of cases — was very sensationalized by the media at the time. But beneath that sensationalism was actually a brutal crime enabled by a dysfunctional community.

It fed into the Satanic Panic and the Drug War, which was a shame. Like I think I pointed out in the story, Ricky’s drug use was likely a response to abuse or trauma. He may have had mental illness issues before he started doing drugs, but it’s unknown. I think it’s a tragedy all around, for the victim and his family, obviously, but I think Ricky Kasso is tragic as well. I guess I’m always looking at what could have been done to prevent crimes, and Ricky’s case seems to be to have been very preventable.

BTW — “things reported in the press” are often the most accurate records we have. Reporters sit though trials, sifting through the tedious motions and procedures to inform the public what actually happened. They interview anyone associated with the crime (if possible), and often find clues or perspectives that the police investigation overlooks. Ethical journalists don’t engage in editorializing or conjecture. Contemporaneous reporting is usually the best source of information, aside from testimony and diaries, which aren’t always available.

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