My thanks to my good friend Liz for pointing me in the direction of this sad yet bizarre story from the United States.
A man has been charged with the murder of his wife with the key evidence being that he downloaded Guns N’ Roses’ “I Used to Love Her” track on the day of her death. This song, unfortunately for him, contains lyrics like “I used to love her/But I had to kill her/I had to put her, six feet under/And I can still hear her complain”.*
There is other evidence too – he was having four or five affairs and he owed tens of thousands on credit cards. And his wife had a $2m insurance policy out on her life (which he claims had actually lapsed as he had stopped paying it months earlier).
It was obviously enough for the jury who found him guilty just a few hours ago and he is due to be sentenced on Monday.
Now while it does seem that there was plenty of evidence there (all circumstantial), you would have to feel sorry for someone who is effectively convicted on the strength of a song they downloaded. Imagine the songs that could convict these people in the situations below…
The State vs Eddie Backslap
Accused: Bank robbery
Downloaded: “Money’s Too Tight to Mention” by Simply Red
Incriminating lyric: “I been laid off from work my rent is due/My kids all need brand new shoes/So I went to the bank to see what they could do/They said son looks like bad luck got a hold on you”
The State vs Denis Deadloss
Accused: Cruelty to a rodent
Downloaded: “Rat in Mi Kitchen” by UB40
Incriminating lyric: ” There`s a rat in me kitchen what am I gonna do?/I`m gonna fix that rat thats what I`m gonna do”
The State vs Alan Combover
Accused: Exposing himself in a public place
Downloaded: “Flash” by Queen
Incriminating lyric: ” Stand for everyone of us”
The State vs Captain Compass
Accused: Being captain of a ship that only hired people who were a bit foolish and then threw them overboard in to the sea
Downloaded: “Ship of Fools” by The Doors
Incriminating lyric: ” Ship of fools/Climb on board/Ship’s gonna leave you all, far behind.”
Cynthia Scampifries vs Steve Scampifries
Accused: Faking interest in the rockery that his wife was putting together in their garden.
Downloaded: “Live Forever” by Oasis
Incriminating lyric: ” Maybe I dont really want to know/How your garden grows”
I think the joke is getting old now…
* Ironically on GNR’s live album, Axl annonced that this was the only song that they have written that is written out of “fantasy and a joke”.