With a twist of words on a 1982 classic, Lifetime TV will bring its audience, “An Officer and a Murderer” on Saturday, July 21, 2012. The Lifetime TV movie is based on the true story of Colonel Russell Williams, fomer base commander of Canada’s largest airbase.
Lifetime TV movie “An Officer and a Murderer” may start off like the 1982 romance “An Officer and a Gentleman” starring Richard Gere, but then shortly into the story it takes a major 180 degree turn. We could say that Colonel Russell Williams’ life started off a little like Zack Mayo’s or maybe even that of Maverick in “Top Gun.” In fact, Colonel Russell Williams watched “Top Gun” over and over and even memorized much of its dialogue.
In this true story turned Lifetime TV movie, the career of Colonel Russell Williams seemed to just climb and climb. Williams became a decorated military pilot who flew the likes of Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Philip, and the Prime Minister of Canada. He even planned the security detail for President Obama’s visit to the 2010 Economic Summit.
Colonel Russell Williams was not only successful in his professional life, but also in his personal life (well at least it seemed that way). Colonel Russell Williams had a beautiful, well-educated wife and they resided in a lakefront cottage in the town of Tweed, near Ottawa. Children looked up to Williams, and one young girl even asked to interview him for a school project.
Starting in 2007 a string of crimes started to occur around Tweed and nearby communities. The crimes started off as burglaries in which ladies’ undergarments or sex toys were stolen. Many of the crimes started out so small that many of the women didn’t even bother to report them. In fact, one woman thought somebody had played a joke on her when her sex toys went missing. By 2009 the crimes started to grow in intensity and two women reported that they were sexually assaulted by somebody who had broken into their home. The man soon took on the name, “The Tweed Creeper.”
A few months after the sexual assaults were reported, a 38-year-old woman was killed and a 27-year-old woman went missing. There were not many suspects in these crimes, and Colonel Russell Williams seemed to be the very last person in town who could have been involved with these horrific crimes. At the time Williams was the base commander at CFB Trenton, Canada’s largest airbase.
A police officer and an FBI interrogation specialist were determined to get to the bottom of the crimes. One piece of evidence that really broke the case was an unusual set of tire treads found in the snow near the missing woman’s home. Police officers set up a traffic stop to inspect every vehicle’s tire treads. Police noticed a resemblance between the tracks and the tires on Williams’ Pathfinder.
Additional evidence was stacked against Williams, even though he tried to always cover his tracks. Many knew him as an obsessive, neat freak, but the determination of law enforcement lead to his arrest. Investigators also learned that he had videotaped many of his crimes. On October 22, 2010 Colonel Russell Williams was sentenced to two consecutive life terms with no chance for parole. In an unprecedented move, Canadian Forces burned Williams’ military uniform.
Psychological Take: When psychologists study serial killers, motives are determined and killers are placed into one or multiple categories of serial killers. The main categories of serial killers are: Visionary Motive (they hear voices in their head telling them to kill; they most often say that God or the devil is telling them to kill), Missionary-Motive (they want to rid the world of what they consider immoral or unworthy), Thrill-Oriented (they kill for the adrenaline rush; sadistic), Profit Killer (they seek to gain monetary gain from killings), Power Killer (these killers were often abused as children and want to take back control by killing), and Lust Killer (this is the sexual killer; fantasy plays a large role in these killings). Clearly Colonel Russell Williams fits into the Lust Killer category.
UPDATE ON THE CASE: Colonel Williams had a failed suicide attempt in prison after trying to swallow a toilet paper roll. The families of the victims are suing, and Williams continues to collect his $60,000 a year pension which will never stop as he is guaranteed this for life.
“An Officer and a Murderer” premieres July 21, 2012 on Lifetime TV at 8:00 PM ET/PT.
An Officer and a Murderer is produced by Solo Productions. Mary Young Leckie (Lifetime Movie Network’s Committed, Shades of Black) and Tom Patricia (Lifetime’s Homeless to Harvard, Lifetime Movie Network’s The Devil’s Teardrop) serve as executive producers and Norma Bailey (Lifetime’s The Pastor’s Wife) directs from a script written by Keith Ross Leckie (Lifetime Movie Network’s Committed, Everest).
Colonel Russell Williams – Lifetime TV “An Officer and a Murderer”
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