getting away with murder in texas

I had three people send me different links to the same horrible story (Gawker, MSN, and ThinkProgress). I was relieved that the vast majority of the comments show the general population to have some sense. They’re appalled that Lenora Ivie Frago’s life was worth a mere $150. Not to mention a lot of people pointed out he was insisting she perform an illegal act (i.e. sex for money), a crime he apparently was never charged with. Even better were those who understood her right to autonomy and the right to say “no” if she felt like it, that she was a human being and not a piece of property, especially not his piece of property. I can’t imagine the pain her family feels.

It’s a very sad commentary on Texas. It’s no secret to anyone who lives here what a gun-nutty, sexist state it is but…wow. This is a new low, even for our court history of allowing crimes against women to go underpunished.

For those men who want to start whinging about possibly being ripped off $150, stop. If you were planning on giving her the money anyway, then it’s already gone. Your precious penis and your presumed constitutional right to get off is not worth a human life. It really, truly is not. You’re not that special. Consider your lost money a lesson learned, and try to find someone else you think you might be more be in tune with your desires. (Escorts get ripped off all the time and they learn to tighten up their business practices. They dust themselves off and try again. This is the correct, mature, response.)

After all, Ezekiel Gilbert clearly had the money to spend tens of thousands on his defense. So why was he so upset over losing $150 he was going to spend anyway? He whines about how hard his life has been over the past four years and how he has nightmares. He could have avoided all that drama by not shooting and killing Lenora. How easy and simple to avoid all these problems! Put the damn gun down, get back to Google and find a new escort. There’s not a single escort in the country who costs more than a criminal defense attorney in a murder case.

He got away with murder because he truly got a jury of his peers. I wish every one of their names could be discovered and put on national blacklists. They set him free and therefore they believe it’s right and proper to kill sex workers who don’t do exactly as demanded. This is a horrific precedent, especially for sex workers who see clients in the evening.

Looked at it from another angle, the jury sort of sees prostitution as a legal business transaction. If that’s the case, then anytime a client beats, rapes, or rips off a prostitute at night, she should lethally shoot him (quite a few sex workers carry guns). If this case is going to be a precedent, then let it be a true precedent.

Realistically, the status quo doesn’t change. Escorts who blatantly state what they will and won’t do for money are setting themselves up for arrest. Or they can be coy, avoid arrest, and set themselves up for disappointed clients who decide to kill them. Either way, their lives are ruined. Their clients’ lives are not.

PS: I hope Gilbert changes whatever career he currently has and takes a service-industry job in Texas, preferably on the night shift. He just doesn’t strike me as someone who can get an order right, such as whether or not I want fries with that and please hold the mayo. At the very least, I hope he never gets to hire another escort again. These articles are even better than a blacklist.

Afterthoughts:

Does this mean that the deaths of strip club bouncers will go unpunished? Every year, some strip club bouncer is shot to death in Dallas, either trying to remove a [drunk, angry] patron or later in the parking lot as revenge, often for protecting the strippers. These men could be seen as thieves just as Lenora was. It’s a very strong possibility. It’s bad enough some of these low-paid, high-risk employees get killed because of stupidity (not theirs) but now there could be no hope of justice for their families either.

I have fantasized about Gilbert being cross-examined during his trial like rape victims are. Has he given away money before? What exactly, is his history of charitable donations? (do full audit in court). Does he have an established pattern of charitable donations to individuals or organizations? Has he ever been robbed before, in any circumstance? Has he ever been shortchanged at a store, or rendered poor service in a restaurant? Does he have a history of fighting back against these injustices or just letting it slide? Has he purchased items off Craigslist or eBay that were not as described? Did he leave negative feedback or shoot the seller? Does he have a habit of inviting strangers to his home at night with promises of giving them money?

9 thoughts on “getting away with murder in texas

  1. massuse

    Please forgive me if I upset anyone by stating this, not my intention of all. I truly believe that a man toting a gun, conceal carry license or not is a paranoid, trigger happy fool to begin with. I simply do not see this as any different than a typical road rage incident where a terrible temper plus a gun equals murder. I too am saddened and horrified by the nutcases inhabiting judicial roles, government and the like. As long as people have opinions and authority, people in their wrath will suffer. I have found personally that what works for me is my understanding of psychology and motivation. I advertise very low key and polite, staying true to my personality. I figure I am one person and I cannot accommodate everyone so I try to accommodate the person who I feel will be a good fit. I turn down a lot of requests and I am always amazed how aggressive some people can be. That being said, violence is born out of a perceived threat and he was obviously a bomb waiting to explode. I would not be surprised if he has not attacked someone else before or if he is involved in another altercation. As far as the judge is concerned, he is as much of a wack job as the killer. It’s funny, I have a client friend who is “churchy” and one day he came to see me after he had an altercation at work and was terrified he had lost his job after yelling at a supervisor. He had always thrown small insults my way now and then but I knew him well enough to cringe and consider the source. Anyway, he hauled off and insulted me without provocation, but fortunately had paid and tipped before I even touched him and left. Sure enough, he came back around and he is still a harmless client and somewhat of a friend as he has not crossed me yet. Although I see him as a person, he will never really see me as one and I consider myself more spiritually aware than him. As long as there are men, women and children will always suffer maltreatment and abuse in one form or another.

  2. Amanda Brooks Post author

    Serra — It is.

    Massuse — On the surface, yes, Ezekiel was (and likely still is) a trigger-happy fool with a very bad temper. The huge deal here is that her life was worth $150 to him and to 12 of his peers, as well as the judge. The extremely stupid law that allows Ezekiel to get away with murder opens the door for all sorts of harm to sex workers, who apparently don’t have enough threats to deal with already. It also opens the door to harm to other nighttime service workers.

    Not to mention he was never charged with solicitation, which he was clearly engaged in doing, and you know full well had she survived, she would have been arrested for prostitution before the case went to trial.

    The emotions he had around this incident may resemble road rage on the surface but they were borne from him not regarding a sex worker’s life as worthwhile, a belief system upheld by the court.

  3. massuse

    Yes Amanda, you are correct and now I understand your clarification on subject. I really admire your principals and dedication you have in regards to this important blog. Thank you for never wavering from your position. Thank you so much for setting such a wonderful example and demonstrating such good integrity and insight.

  4. Greg

    As a Texan, it is appalling to see what a jury and judge believes to be a justified shooting. I do work in an industry where I provide a service to the public. Would the jury and judge acquit a lawyer, doctor, dentist, psychiatrist, or any other professional if they decided to shoot one of their clients in the back as they walked out the door after they performed a service and were not paid? There are countless other examples of this logic I could use. Without any other knowledge of the case, it appears that the prosecution didn’t put much into this case. This is not the way that law should work in my state.

  5. David

    If I had not seen this in print I would not have believed it. It’s hard ot believe this happened in the U.S. So much for the rule of law.

  6. Amanda Brooks Post author

    Massuse — I think it’s important that people pay attention to this one. It’s ugly. And very, very sad.

    Greg — Agreed. This should have been a no-brainer for the prosecution to chew this guy up and spit him out. Instead, a whole lot of people are now afraid, not just sex workers. Plenty of low-wage employees work at night in the service industry.

    BTW, lots of doctors now make you pay up front when you check in. I guess they’re getting wise. Of course, under this ruling, doesn’t mean they can’t get shot if their patient doesn’t agree with services rendered.

    David — It’s stupid and hideous.

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