Book Reviews


Silent Witness

by Mark Fuhrman

The Terri Schiavo case caught my attention in February and March of 2005. I had heard of it before but it didn't grasp my full attention until just before her death. In that short time I agonized with the mother pleading for her daughter's life to be spared. I failed to understand why Michael did not just get on with his life and let the family take over. During her 14 days of starvation I woke up in the middle of many nights worried about her suffering. I didn't believe the supposed euphoria state because I figured no one could really know unless they were in the body of Terri to feel what she was feeling. 

I read a couple of books by Mark Fuhrman before and was impressed by the way he was able to solve the Martha Moxley case in Murder in Greenwich. I also read Murder in Brentwood. I believe Fuhrman is indeed an excellent detective. I hate racism but I for one never once believed that Mark Fuhrman was a racist so I did not let the accusations of racism stop me from reading his books. When my daughter and I was in Sam's Club last week we passed the book section and immediately I saw a picture of Terri Schiavo on the cover of, "Silent Witness" by Mark Fuhrman. 

We decided to wait until I got home to check and see if Amazon or Barnes & Noble had the book cheaper. I checked Barnes & Noble and it wasn't cheaper but with the gas prices so high I didn't want to run back to Sam's Club so I ordered it online. I had to read that book. 

I was not disappointed. Mark Fuhrman did a investigation just like a good detective would do in searching for the truth of that case. Only two people know for sure what happened years ago that caused Terri's death. Mr. Fuhrman seems to rule out bulimia almost at once and begins to sift testimony and interviews of many involved to try to piece together things that the media, courts, and many others overlooked. 

One thing I was certain of before reading Mark's book which was reinforced by reading the book was this:  I believe a great injustice was done to a United States citizen in March 2005 and years previous. Something was terribly wrong in that case. The American people did not get the true picture from the news media. There are consistencies in Michael's own accounts of the day Terri collapsed. There is a 40 minute delay in calling 911. What happened in those 40 minutes? There are many questions in this case that should be answered but with the help of one judge in Florida the evidence is burned to ashes. The Silent witness will not be heard from which I believe is the reason she was ushered to her death. Why was rehabilitation stopped? Why was Terri denied treatment for sepsis? Why was Judge Greer so one-sided on this case? Why did he believe the relatives of Michael Schiavo and ignore the relatives of Terri?  

Mr. Fuhrman asks a lot of questions I would never have thought of. One part of the book I especially liked of his six possible scenarios and his own personal opinion of what may have happened. 

One thing I've seen in this case is politics. If politics had not have reared it's ugly head, Terri Schiavo might still be alive. The media could have generated enough support for her if they could have forgotten politics and strived for truth. Instead they rallied on the side of the "right to die" movement. I was impressed with Jesse Jackson who was one that crossed over the line of politics and spoke out against this injustice. I was not impressed by those politicians who were afraid of the supposed opinion polls and kept silent. When it comes to right vs. wrong, the majority is not always correct. We should never worry about polls. Why has no one ever called me? Polls do not reflect what we really think for those doing the polls know what questions to ask to get the response they are looking for. If someone were to ask me if I thought someone should lie in a vegetative state for 15 years, of course I would probably say no. Who would wish that on anyone? However, if I was given all the facts before someone asked the same question, my reply would be different. 

Who would have believed that in the great United States of America, a husband living with another woman would be allowed to decide whether or not his comatose wife should die when the wife's own mother desired to take over her care and the expense it would incur?

Mark Fuhrman doesn't get into the right to life or right to die issues but sticks to the investigative side of this story. He believes this case was not investigated properly. He admits that he is not religious and is not speaking out on behalf of the right to life movement. 

At the end of the book he does show concern for the other Terri Schiavos out there that we never hear about. He shows concern about women who die at the hand of their husbands or boyfriends that no one investigates. He asks, "How many have gotten away with murder?"

My own opinion on that score is this: They haven't gotten away with anything. If they are not judged in this life they will face the final judge who knows everything. George Felos, F. Lee Bailey and any others considered to be big name attorneys will not be able to help them on that day. Michael will face that day and it will come. God knows whether he is guilty before, during or after Terri's collapse. Even if he was right in wanting to end her suffering, why kill two innocent cats? His actions toward Terri's parents, his affairs with women while his wife was lying in the state she was in, and many other things do not show me an innocent person. At least let the parents have the body and a funeral. Why the rush to cremate? Too many unanswered questions. 

Is Michael another Scott Peterson or a man of compassion? Maybe reading this book will help one come to a conclusion.


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