On this day (January 5, 2007), Jodi Sanderholm was raped, sodomized and murdered by Justin Thurber in Kansas. The killer was sentenced to death on Friday March 20, 2009. In loving memory of her and her family members, I will endorse the Jodi’s Voice, by telling you more with information from the website.
(September 26, 1987 to January 5, 2007)
About Jodi’s Law
The purpose of this site is to provide an easy access point for information and links relating to Jodi’s Law and other stalking laws.
Current laws do not offer a clear enough definition of stalking nor do they carry a severe enough punishment. I became aware of this situation when a close family friend went missing on January 5, 2007. The story of her disappearance is listed below. Jodi Sanderholm was 19 years old, valedictorian of her high school, dance instructor, and a college student when on January 5, 2007 she disappeared in broad daylight. Within hours Arkansas City, KS police department had her murderer & rapist in custody. Unfortunately, it was too late for Jodi. Jodi’s caring, intelligent and beautiful outlook on life exemplifies everything I hope my own daughter will grow up to become.These stories happen all too often in our society, however, you never think they will happen to someone close to you. I moved in next door to Jodi when she was almost two years old. Jodi and her sister were my own 11-year-old daughter’s babysitters until recently when we moved to New Mexico.
This story happened in a town of approximately 12,000 on a Friday afternoon. Jodi left her dance practice, called her mother to cancel a planned lunch, and disappeared.Her murderer was well known to her dance team and the police department. The police have called him a “groupie” of the team and by the early hours of Saturday morning the police were looking for him. He was taken into custody on unrelated charges on Saturday, January 6th. However, Jodi was not found until Tuesday, January 9th. It was an excruciating long wait for all of Jodi’s friends and family. In the end, her murderer stands charged with aggravated kidnapping, rape, aggravated sodomy, and murder. Jodi was killed within hours of her last contact with her mother. The cause of death is listed as blunt force trauma and strangulation.
It breaks my heart to think what her last hours were like and the fear she must have felt. After enduring all of this Jodi’s body was left in the woods, while her killer sank her car into a nearby lake and went on about his normal day.
Looking back there were many aspects that led to Jodi’s murder. Her murderer had been taken into custody earlier that same week and released when he complained of chest pains. The police released him with the thought that they would pick him up and press the charges later. They had not picked him up on January 5th and it is now too late for Jodi.
Her murderer was the object of multiple restraining orders placed by other young women and just the day before is accused of following another dance team member for miles until she went to the police department for safety. However, there were no laws in Kansas (or New Mexico) that would allow the police to arrest him for stalking.
The law I am proposing will come too late for Jodi, but it will come because of Jodi. Strengthening the legal definition of stalking while increasing punishment would allow law enforcement agencies everywhere to better protect our citizens. It is my belief that this law should be changed on a national level. Due to the fact that Internet stalking can currently occur from many states away. Uniformity and definition is the key to making sure our young women are safe from stalkers. http://jodisvoice.org/about-us/about-2/
About Jodi Sanderholm
Jodi was born Sept. 26, 1987, in Arkansas City, to Brian J. and Cindy A. (Shanks) Sanderholm. Jodi attended Arkansas City schools, graduating from Arkansas City High School in 2006. She was one of four valedictorians in her graduating class. While in high school, Jodi was a member of the National Honor Society, a Kansas State Scholar, a Kansas Board of Regents Scholar and earned the Outstanding Physics Student of the Year Award presented by David Stinemetze. She was a member of the Ark City High School Dance Team for four years. Two of those four years she was the captain. Jodi was a member/instructor of Ark City Dance and a Universal Dance Association Instructor. After high school, she attended Cowley College where she studied pre-pharmacy. While at Cowley, she was a member of the Cowley Tigerette Danceline. http://jodisvoice.org/about-us/about-jodi-sanderholm/
See more on the website: http://jodisvoice.org/intro/
QUOTE 1: Thursday 21 January 2010 - The relatives of murder victims on Thursday pleaded with Kansas lawmakers not to abolish the state's death penalty, saying that the penalty should be handed out to those who kill and not weighed in terms of what it costs the state.
“You cannot put a price tag on my sisters’ life,” Jennifer Sanderholm told the Senate Judiciary Committee. “That is ultimately what you will do if you abolish the death penalty”
QUOTE 2: Justin Thurber raped, sodomized and murdered 19-year-old Jodi Sanderholm of Arkansas City on 5 January 2007. In March 2009, he was sentenced to die by lethal injection by a Cowley County judge.
Thurber feared the death penalty and, the night before his trial, tried to plea bargain to take capital punishment off the table, Jennifer Sanderholm told lawmakers, her voice wracked with emotion.
“He was scared and he didn’t want to die,” she said, surrounded by her mother Cindy and father Brian who also testified.
AUTHOR: Jennifer Sanderholm is the sister of 19-year-old Jodi Sanderholm who was raped, sodomized and murdered by Justin Thurber on 5 January 2007.
COMMENTS & CONDOLENCES:
I am sorry for the loss of Jennifer Sanderholm. I totally walked in your shoes and she does remind me of Sally Anne Bowman (One of the many reasons why I became a supporter of the death penalty when I was a strong opponent). I will pray to God to comfort your family and I will encourage people to support Jodi’s Voice. If you want to see justice served and watch Justin Thurber die, I encourage your family members to stop the Kansan Abolitionists by starting a similar campaign like, Vote No on Proposition 34. May your R.I.P.
One way to show that I care for murder victims and their grieving families, is to write rebuttal essays to the Abolitionists. The Abolitionists write letters to those murderers on Death Row, which are insulting to the murdered victims. I started this blog to encourage the world to remember the victims and their families.
See my response to the KCADP:
KCADP Statement on Kahler’s Death Sentence
The Kansas Coalition Against the Death Penalty released the following statement after James Kraig Kahler was sentenced to death today:
We regret the loss of the lives of Karen, Emily, and Lauren Kahler and Dorothy Wight. Sentencing Kraig Kahler to death will not restore their lives. It will not bring peace to the remaining family members or the traumatized local community. Public safety could have been achieved with the alternative sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole.
REBUTTAL: Sentencing this killer to death will not restore the victims to lives but Life without the possibility of parole does not restore them to their lives either, why not we just do not punish the killer at all.
“It will not bring peace to the remaining family members or the traumatized local community.”
KCADP should check with the victims’ families who want to see justice served or those who had justice served already.
“Public safety could have been achieved with the alternative sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole.”
Please see the quote from Thomas Sowell.
Please read this blog post on how I rebutted them in another incident.
Here is a Tribute Video by Dayton Gates: