Another sad story about a violent murder-suicide was reported by Canwest News Service.
On November 24, 2007 the bodies of David (63) & Nancy (75) Denovan were found in their home on Saltspring Island, B.C.
The article states that "At the time, many in the close-knit island community speculated she had somehow chosen to end her life with the help of her husband."
The article also states that "However, detectives said autopsies concluded there were no long-term health problems with either person."
Nancy died from blunt-force trauma to her head, caused by a weapon, and her neck was cut.
David purchased a rope a few days before the act and used it to hang himself. The act appears to have been planned.
In March 2005, a study done by Julie Malphurs & Donna Cohen on 20 cases of homicide/suicide in Florida showed that so called compassionate spousal homicide/suicide deaths are in fact spousal murder-suicide. In every instance Cohen found that the husband had killed his wife and in nearly all cases the death was a violent death without any connection to assisted suicide.
(A Statewide Case–Control Study of Spousal Homicide–Suicide in Older Persons, Julie Malphurs, Donna Cohen - http://ajgponline.org/cgi/content/abstract/13/3/211)
People often jump to conclusions when they hear about a murder-suicide and they associate these deaths with assisted suicide. Rarely are these cases ever connected to supposed acts of “compassion”.
This case shows again that most of these crimes are based on planned, violent actions of one spouse, usually the husband, against the other spouse.
These cases rarely, if ever, have anything to do with assisted suicide.
"Saltspring, B.C., deaths ruled murder-suicide"
Canwest News Service, Friday, April 25, 2008