Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

The Desire Terrorist

Murder for Hire

Late in the afternoon of October 13, the death watch on Groves had begun. At 5:09 p.m., Davis was recorded in a phone conversation as saying, "I can get P. [Paul Hardy] to come and do that [expletive deleted] now and then we can handle the 30" (signal 30, police jargon for murder).

Paul Hardy
Paul Hardy

An hour later, Davis and Hardy got into a phone conversation in which Davis invited Hardy and some other friends to come to the district police station to look at some photos of murder victims. (At that time, a number of police officers on the scene of murders were taking unauthorized, graphically detailed and gruesome pictures of victims and they derived a perverse pleasure in showing them off to their friends.) Then the discussion turned to Groves.

Len Davis
Len Davis

Davis told Hardy that, earlier that day, Groves was in a car with Norwood and his twin brother and they pulled up alongside Davis and Williams' patrol car at a traffic light. Groves could be seen pointing and saying, "That's them. That's them." Davis snarled back at them, through a closed window, "I see you too." Then he began describing her to Hardy, including the clothing she was wearing.

As the night wore on, Davis stalked the neighborhood where Groves lived, hoping to spot her. He and Hardy had worked out a system of codes for notifying each other. Each would put a certain number of numerals into the other's beeper and that would be a signal to call on the cell phone. Early in the evening, Hardy hung out at his girlfriend, Toni Van Buren's apartment, awaiting word from Davis when and where to strike. Between 9:45 and 9:49 p.m., Davis impatiently asked Hardy, "Y'all ain't went and handled y'all's business?" Hardy replied that he had to drop his children off but now he was on the way back to the Lower Ninth.

At 10:01 p.m., as Hardy was making his way down to the Lower Ninth, Davis got her in his sights while she was talking to another person outside her home in the 1300 block of Alabo. He described to Hardy what she was wearing. She had on faded black jeans with large white bleach stains on the front of the legs and a black coat that came down to around her thighs. "I got the phone on and the radio. After it [the murder] is done, go straight uptown and call me," Davis said to him.

In a 1991 Nissan Maxima driven by Steve Jackson with Causey in the front seat, Hardy drew closer to his prey. Parking a few blocks away, around the corner from where Groves was standing, Jackson shut off the vehicle and Hardy got out sometime shortly before 11 p.m. He walked calmly up to Groves, fired his 9 mm Baretta pistol at her head and felled her with a single bullet. Racing back to Jackson's car, the trio took off back toward the Florida projects.

Responding quickly to the sound of gunfire, Groves' neighbors responded quickly and raced to her aid. One of them wrapped a towel around Groves' bleeding head. Still breathing when the EMTs arrived, she was raced to Charity Hospital about ten miles away on the other side of town. However, by the time of her arrival, Kim Marie Groves, a 32-year-old mother of three, was dead.

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