He wasn’t a terrible person, he needed help

Robert Travers, 50, and Carol Lama had been long time friends. They met when they were three and had kept in touch throughout the years.

As a teen, Travers began using drugs, and became addicted. However, in 1998 Travers had completed a rehab program and had come out clean and sober. Carol Lama offered him a place in her home. And reportedly the two had a brief romantic relationship at that time, however that didn't work out.

Lama says she helped him to move out to an apartment of his own. And the two evidently kept in touch. According to Lama, in May she recieved an email from Travers, threatening to harm himself. She went to his home, pounding on the door and when she did not get an answer, she broke a glass to gain entry. She found Travers unconcious, beside two empty pill bottles. She contacted 911, and arranged for him to be taken to the hospital. And was suprised when they released him the same day.

His landlord's have said that Travers appeared emaciated. And that he had not paid rent in eight months, but that he was trying to get his life together.

After the suicide attempt, Travers reportedly began threatening Lama. Lama says that she has a new boyfriend, and that Travers was afraid that she wouldn't have time for him any longer. She helped him find a therapist and she went to his first appointment with him.

Reportedly Travers had previously broken into her home. And allegedly he had abused her in the past and that he had begun stalking her. She warned him that she was sleeping with a loaded gun by her bed. She says she didn't report his threats to police, because she didn't want him to lose the new job he had gotten.

Early Saturday morning, Lama says she was awakened by the sound of her door opening. Then he said her name. She reportedly asked hiim not to kill her, and she says she saw a weapon in his waistband. As he charged toward the bed, she shot and killed him. Police say he was armed with a pellet gun.

Lama was not harmed, nor were her son or his girlfriend who were also sleeping in the home.

The investigation into the crime is continuing. Lama has not been charged with a crime. Statements have been taken and will be reviewed by the district attorney.

How Travers got into the home is not clear. According to Lama, she doesn't know how Travers got into her home. And she says "It's not a thing someone should ever have to do," "He wasn't a terrible person. He just needed help."



Coming out of rehab, he immediately found a "savior" who offered a place to live, friendship, and even a romantic relationship. And though the romantic relationship is reported to have been short term, lasting only a couple of months, the ongoing friendship he had with her- I can see him confusing his sobriety as being dependent on her support. And thus a new boyfriend could seem to threaten both his well being and his sobriety. I wonder if he had possibly turned to drugs again? The comment about him being emaciated, troubles me. It could be a sign of a physical illness, mental problems, or drug usage.

The fact that it is unclear how he entered the home, is troubling. Still having lived there, and been a long time visitor, he would have known which doors or windows might have been prone to being left unlocked.

He attempted suicide, and she stopped him. Right away, he seems to begin threatening her. I wonder if she had ever advised his therapist of the threats? Certainly his suicide, his threats to her could have resulted in a psychiatric hold in a hospital if the therapist considered them to be credible indications of "threatening harm to self or others". Yes, it could have caused him to lose his job, a job he had obtained recently after a long period of unemployment. But it could have prevented the tragic result.

Still, it is easier to stand outside the situation and say 'should have done this, should have done that' than to have lived through it.    

To learn more about the warning signs of mental illness, click here. If you know of someone with these signs, be sure to discuss them with the persons doctor, psychiatrist, or therapist.


No Children

Thomas and Amy Ceslia had recently split up, and Amy moved in with her father in another county. Amy Ceslia then filed for divorce on June 9. The couple did not have children.

Thomas Ceslia had been working as a sheriff's deputy, in corrections, since 2004. And on June 20 th, he submitted his resignation. Details about the resignation have not been made available, though it is said the resignation was unexpected. Ciesla had recently been turned down for a job on a city police department.

On Fri. a call was made to 911, regarding a domestic dispute at the home of Thomas Podejko, Amy's father. Though one article states that the call the police received was a hang up call. Another article says that the call came in from a cell phone as a domestic dispute, and is divided on whether the caller hung up or whether the phone line remained open, recording everything that happened in the home. 

Thomas Ceslia, 28, had shown up at the Pokejko home. According to friends who have spoken with one of the witnesses, he put a gun to his wife's head and he said ‘I’m going to get even with you for what you did to me,’ ”  “And you’re going to watch your family die.’ “And that’s when he started blasting.”

He shot Thomas Podejko, 63, his wife's father. He also shot his wife's aunt Carol Lindner, 62, who was present at the home. Both were killed. Another shot went to her uncle Thomas LIndner, who was injured but alive. Both Lindner's also resided in the home. Amy Ceslia was present at the home, but was not injured. After the shootings, Ceslia turned the gun on himself.

Thomas Lindner was shot in the hand, and he was hospitalized in fair to good condition.

Many details of the shootings are not clear. Motive for the crime is not known. An investigation is being done on why an officer who had responded to the scene fired a shot at the scene, even though he did not hit anyone.






Why would he go to the home and shoot his wife's father, aunt, and uncle and leave his wife alive? Had there been a family dispute? Did he blame the family for the break up between him and Amy? Or was he wanting his wife to live so that he could ensure that she suffered?

She did not cause the shootings. She had no way of preventing the shootings. Though there seems to be no fault pointed at her, likely she will have guilt over this. She lost her husband and her aunt, all at the hands of the man she had brought into the family. A man she had once loved, maybe still loved to some extent.

Luckily, the couple did not have children. And this case does strongly make me think of the incidents where a parent will kill their children at the time of a separation or divorce. He apparently did tell the wife that he wanted her to suffer. Since there were no children, he then turned to the nearest family members.

When a law enforcement officer is killed, there is a shock throughout the entire law enforcement brotherhood. Every day they fight crimes together and they have to be able to rely on each other, their lives often depend on it. When an officer dies like this, in the midst of a personal crime and at his own hands it is especially hard. Because not only have they lost a brother, it somewhat erodes the trust they in each other.

Two dead, one injured, and a wife left with all the questions and doubts.