About Me

My name is Jane Howatt. Welcome to my blog!

For 13 years I rode shotgun with John “Jigsaw” St. John, one of the LAPD‘s most celebrated detectives, as he investigated notorious murder cases.

The collision of this ordinary suburban mom and the underbelly of evil is the subject of my book, “The Killer, the Cop and Me.”

On my blog, I‘ll post about true crime, my life and what I learned from the mind of a brilliant homicide cop.

I invite you to join me for the ride!

Archive for November, 2009

“M” is for “Motive”

Sunday, November 1st, 2009

At the beginning of any murder investigation, John St. John would follow the same methodical routine. Once the victim’s body was removed  and the investigating officers had left, he would begin writing the official police document called the crime scene log.

The log was an hour by hour, sometimes minute by minute record of what was happening at the scene. It included time of day, license plates of nearby cars, weather reports, names of potential witnesses – even such a seemingly  inconsequential detail as the names of each business on the street. Then St. John would begin circling the area starting with a large circle at the outer edge of the crime scene then shrinking the path to a very small circle where the body was left.

I walked many of those circles with John St. John.

As he circled, John tried to connect to the mind of the killer.  Jigsaw told me he always thought of the crime scene as the first meeting between the killer and him. The killer had left a body. St. John had decipher the clues left in the dirt, an alley, a trash can, on the floor – so he could catch “the guy.” Jigsaw always referred to the killer as “the guy.”

Then St. John’s mind would turn to motive. Why did the killer resort to murder instead of assault? What drove this human being to take the life of another human? What was going on inside the killer’s head? That puzzle kept John St. John awake at night, preoccupied while he drove, buzzing round in his brain while he worked in his backyard on the weekend.  It was always the why – why – why puzzle of murder that fascinated him. Always the why. Jane