Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Kristi Koslow

Everything's Bigger in Texas

Kristi could not fit her stepmother's funeral into her schedule, though the greater part of Fort Worth's high society attended. Jealousy only added momentum to the destructive course upon which Kristi had embarked. Parricide was a term she most likely had never heard of, yet one she'd gotten to know well. Her love-entranced boyfriend and his friend from a neighboring town had committed a crime incomprehensible to those living in the old-money community of River Crest in Fort Worth, Texas.

"It's more of a shock for us because we have this inappropriate sense that we have the resources to prevent crime," said one of four women who joined the Koslow's neighbor in a walk the morning after the murder occurred. The group strolled across the pristine River Crest Country Club golf course and into a wooded neighborhood overlooking the Trinity River Valley.

"This neighborhood is crawling with personal security systems, guard dogs, electronic beams," said another walker and neighbor. 

"All of the alarms, all of the security systems couldn't stop this," remarked a lawyer who was in the process of organizing a Crime Watch where Caren Koslow died.

In an exclusive residential area that was home to such families as the Carters and W.T. Waggoner, many of the owners of the most beautiful homes in English Tudor and Georgian styles held ties to oil, cattle, banking, real estate and mercantile fortunes.

Crime was hindered by expensive and elaborate security systems, even before such technology was ordinary. Private school and fine arts fundraisers were commonplace social occasions where the wealthy contributed large funds to sustain such community programs.

Manicured lawns showed no signs of amateur gardening, and a police chief responding to the murder of Caren Koslow showed the country this homicide was not just another gang slaying. In a city of more than 600,000, it was unusual to have the top administrator of a 1,400-man agency respond to a crime scene.

Big money, big houses and big police agencies were unable to stop a teenage murder conspiracy from taking over the newspaper headlines.

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