Many times Law and Order: SVU and other shows of that genre will advertise that an upcoming episode is “ripped from the headlines.” The gruesome story that came out of the Bronx this week would offer the perfect opening scene to capture the viewers’ attention.
A man is out walking his dog in the early hours of a New York City winter’s day. The dog starts barking relentlessly at a bloody suitcase. Irritated neighbors start to rouse from their sleep and wonder why that dog down below won’t get quiet. The man holding the leash cautiously opens the bag and is shocked to find bloody body parts. The cops are called and then spend the rest of the morning tracking down other parts scattered in bags and suitcases spread a block wide.
Cue the theme music.
Sadly, this Bronx tale is all too real and one family is living out a nightmare that seems to get worse with every new detail.
The victim of dismemberment has been identified as 45-year-old Tanya Byrd, who was reported missing just a day earlier by her adult son, who lives with her. This same son, 23-year-old Bashid McLean, was led away in handcuffs from their home several hours later. He is accused of killing Byrd after a chainsaw was discovered in their apartment and a shower curtain that should have been there was missing. On top of that, the home smelled like bleach.
Byrd leaves behind another adult child and a young son with Down’s syndrome, as well as friends and family members who came forward to speak of her kind and loving heart.
And we have questions about how a young man could commit such atrocious acts against his mother. In addition to criminal psychologists and journalists, I am guessing some TV producers are waiting to learn more about the alleged criminal as well.
Investigators will begin to peel away the layers of the clues of this crime. Violent crimes are mostly complex in nature as to the motivations and impulses that led to such a horrific act. My thoughts and prayers go out to the family and friends of Tanya Byrd.