Discuss Detroit Archives - Beginning January 2007 Downriver man who drove car/family into lake. Previous Next
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Rjk
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Username: Rjk

Post Number: 813
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Friday, August 24, 2007 - 7:02 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Does anyone remember the guy who drove his car into the water killing his 3 or 4 children? If I recall correctly his wife survived. I believe this happened in the early 90's.

Someone brought this story up the other day and I was trying to find a link to it but have had no success. Thanks for any help.
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Toolbox
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Username: Toolbox

Post Number: 1099
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, August 24, 2007 - 7:15 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

On August 3, 1989, shortly after 9:00 p.m., with his wife and four children as passengers, Lawrence DeLisle drove the family's station wagon down Eureka Road in Wyandotte, Michigan, through a barrier of two wooden posts, and into the Detroit River. Although DeLisle and his wife, Suzanne, survived the incident, all four of their children, Bryan, Melissa, Kathryn, and Emily, drowned.
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Detroitplanner
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Username: Detroitplanner

Post Number: 1376
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Friday, August 24, 2007 - 7:36 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I heard they made a movie about this. It was called "Honey I sunk the kids!"

The difference between DeLisle and Belle Isle?
People wanted Belle Isle rides.
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Craig
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Username: Craig

Post Number: 274
Registered: 02-2007
Posted on Friday, August 24, 2007 - 7:57 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Go to OTIS and see Larry's picture.

He was 30, had four kids, and was deep in debt.
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Cincinnati_kid
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Username: Cincinnati_kid

Post Number: 10
Registered: 07-2006
Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 10:23 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

What's OTIS Craig? How much debt can you be in to kill your kids?

(Message edited by cincinnati_kid on August 26, 2007)
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East_detroit
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Username: East_detroit

Post Number: 1176
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 10:44 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

http://www.state.mi.us/mdoc/as p/otis2profile.asp?mdocNumber= 210762
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Cambrian
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Username: Cambrian

Post Number: 1523
Registered: 08-2006
Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 10:55 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

That was awful. He tried to say it was a leg cramp that made him mash the accelerator down. Thankfully the jury didn't buy it. It's hard to believe this happened way back in '89. It was a big brown 77 LTD wagon if I recall. (Only relevant as I now have a similar car)
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Iheartthed
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Username: Iheartthed

Post Number: 1465
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 11:11 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Didn't a similar thing also happen on Belle Isle in the early to mid 90s?

Edit: Or maybe this is the incident but I always thought it happened on Belle Isle...

(Message edited by iheartthed on August 26, 2007)
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Craig
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Username: Craig

Post Number: 290
Registered: 02-2007
Posted on Monday, August 27, 2007 - 8:11 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

OTIS is... Offender Tracking Information System, via Michigan Dept. of Corrections. I found it one afternoon while looking for information about a guy that I knew from the neighborhood.

I can only imagine how desperate (or ill) one would have to feel in order to murder their children.
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Rsa
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Username: Rsa

Post Number: 1246
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Monday, August 27, 2007 - 10:57 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

didn't he try to murder his family earlier? i seem to remember him opening the gas valve on the furnace to "fix it" then putting a candle nearby to "keep the cat away" while he went to the store. i want to say that story came out in the proceedings and it helped convict him (premeditation). anybody else remember that?
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Eric_w
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Username: Eric_w

Post Number: 303
Registered: 02-2007
Posted on Monday, August 27, 2007 - 11:09 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

That prison photo is a lot different than he looked before. It sure was a sensational and sad story. It got a lot of coverage on Detroit Talk radio back then. I remember his wife was pretty odd. People that knew with him said he was very quiet & nothing seemed to bother him-I bet he kept all his pent up issues inside & he went off that day-
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Kellyroad
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Username: Kellyroad

Post Number: 95
Registered: 04-2007
Posted on Monday, August 27, 2007 - 2:28 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I remember the DeLisle incident like it was yesterday. My wife (RN) worked on the intensive care unit at Wyandotte Hospital and was called down to the emergency room when the children were brought in. Our own children were about the same age as two of the DeLisle children. Needless to say that incident had an emotional impact on us. What is most amazing is how Susan Delisle defended her husband's action after losing her children. A leg cramp..come on.
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Cambrian
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Username: Cambrian

Post Number: 1530
Registered: 08-2006
Posted on Monday, August 27, 2007 - 3:00 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I remember thinking of that while I was in Alaska. I was driving a one ton Chevy Van around on some mountain road. I punched down the gas and the damnbed ignition linkage seized up. That 350 4 bbl was howling and the truck was picking up speed heading for some tight road curves. I immediatly threw the truck in neutral and shut the engine off, coasting it to the shoulder. I don't see how any one can head for a situation like a river and do nothing while the car races on. On those cable tv crime programs it is tried occasionally when some guy wants to off his wife, they never get away with it.
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Kellyroad
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Username: Kellyroad

Post Number: 96
Registered: 04-2007
Posted on Tuesday, August 28, 2007 - 2:28 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Also, the car was seen turning around on to Eureka and then speeding toward the river. I drive by or walk by the Eureka/VanAlstyne intersection almost on a daily basis. There was plenty of time for Larry Delisle to veer his vehicle before plunging it into the Detroit river. The Wyandotte detective knew that was intentional even before the Michigan State Police got involved with the investigation.
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Mercman
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Username: Mercman

Post Number: 45
Registered: 10-2006
Posted on Tuesday, August 28, 2007 - 4:37 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

This says he confessed...

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/f ullpage.html?res=950DE4DB133BF 930A2575BC0A96F948260
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Rjk
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Username: Rjk

Post Number: 820
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Tuesday, August 28, 2007 - 4:59 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

^ Yeah, I read that earlier and didn't remember him confessing. I do remember his wife being very supportive of him and believing in his story.

Not that it would have really matter in their ability to survive, but the younger kids were strapped into car seats.
What a bastard. His kids are screaming for help and he's swimming for safety.
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Waz
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Username: Waz

Post Number: 179
Registered: 11-2006
Posted on Tuesday, August 28, 2007 - 5:10 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I've been reading this thread and thinking about the Stephen Grant case, and how the media has handled each of them.

Both stories are tragic and senseless (unless you're the perpetrator, I guess). But I don't recall pages-long newspaper stories and half-hour TV specials about the DeLisle children, as I did with Tara Grant. Maybe they did run at the time, but the memory's getting foggy. Maybe because the Grants were well-to-do and the DeLisles were not so well off, that made a difference. I don't know. My point is that the media seems to be sensationalizing and dragging murder stories out longer and longer - for the sake of ratings, I suppose. Or is it just me?
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Lefty2
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Username: Lefty2

Post Number: 46
Registered: 07-2007
Posted on Tuesday, August 28, 2007 - 8:39 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Detroitplanner - FUNNY.

I am hope its not true, but I'm afraid there is going to be a lot more of these type of psycho killings in the future, the way all the school psychiatrists are drugging up the kids on riddlin and all that other sh_t.
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Ffdfd
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Username: Ffdfd

Post Number: 158
Registered: 09-2006
Posted on Tuesday, August 28, 2007 - 8:52 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Waz, there's more media now, and it's ever-present -- 24-hour TV, internet, talk radio. So my guess is there has been more coverage of the Grants than the DeLisles. But I remember the DeLisle coverage being pretty comprehensive for the times.

One the thing I remember is a column Mitch Albom wrote back when he still could offer some insight. He used the term quiet desperation to describe Lawrence DeLisle. The gist was you might think you know someone, but you can't know what's really going on in his mind, and he might be living a life of quiet desperation.

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