Archive for Saturday, July 5, 2008

Victim had worked to reduce violence against women

Friends and family of a Lawrence murder victim hope to keep her memory alive. On Wednesday, friends and family gathered for a celebration of life to remember Jana Mackey.

July 5, 2008


Family, friends and educators on Saturday remembered Jana Mackey as a passionate and motivated woman who was dedicated to community service.

Mackey, 25, of Hays, was found dead Thursday inside a home at 409 Mich.

She was a second-year law student at Kansas University.

"Everybody that knew her ... is really going to miss her," said Beth Cateforis, a Kansas University clinical associate professor.

Mackey was a devoted advocate for women's rights and worked in the Statehouse as a lobbyist, said Sylvie Rueff, who worked with her in the National Organization for Women, where Mackey was dedicated to reducing violence against women.

"It appears now she's been the ultimate victim," Rueff said. "I really could not believe she got killed because she was just such a remarkable woman."

Sarah Jane Russell, executive director of the Ga Du Gi Safe Center, said Mackey worked as volunteer advocate for the nonprofit organization that provides support for survivors of sexual assault.

"Advocates are people who are on call 24/7 ... they do the front-line work with victims; they're the ones who have heart. It takes a heart, and it takes being honey on steel, and she had that ... she had everything, and above all she had compassion for others," Russell said.

Mackey was still on the list of advocates but was on hiatus during law school, Russell said.

"There are no answers. There are a thousand questions, and there always are when it involves domestic violence and sexual assault issues," Russell said.

Mackey was enrolled this summer in the Paul E. Wilson Defender Project at KU, where she represented federal prisoners in appellate and post-conviction litigation in state and federal courts.

"I think we have pictures of her dog up in our workroom," said Cateforis, supervising attorney for the Defender Project. "It's going to be very weird to clean up after her. I really don't know what I'm going to do."

Cateforis said Mackey was vibrant and had a lovely sense of humor.

"She was a pleasure," Cateforis said. "I always looked forward to walking into class and seeing her smile and hearing what she had to say or hearing her big laugh."

Mackey also was a singer and actress, receiving honors as an undergraduate for her theater performances. She was also given several scholarships for her law school work.

- 6News director Cody Howard and staff writer Janet Reid contributed to this report.


ASBESTOS 9 years, 10 months ago

What in the world was this "wonderful" 26 year old woman doing with this violent loser that is 46 years old? SHe was having a "relationship" with him and knew he had a record?

Alison Roberts 9 years, 10 months ago

No one is blaming the victim... its just questionable for her to have been in that situation in the first place. No one is downplaying the tragedy; there are definitely a lot of details that need to be filled in, but sadly, they probably never will.

notwhatyourthink 9 years, 10 months ago

I don't think Asbestos is intending to be cruel with this point. It is kinda odd that you are a victim advocate and you are part of a group that works to defend the scum like this guy. does that say to the victims of violence? Your abuser is really not that bad?Look at this guys past. People like him should be locked up forever. This should be a slap in the face for those of you that don't think so. Read this article lets all give them a fresh start. To Cateforis, you really don't know what to do? Well I hope it makes you think twice and three times about who you give your efforts to defend. One who commits violence against another will not be rehabilitated and will commit violence again. I think the biggest tragedy here is that this MONSTER was let go. A poor young girl who like everyone else in Lawrence has their head in the sand and think everyone is good no matter what they do is now dead.

ASBESTOS 9 years, 10 months ago

OK, fine then,where is the guy?Do you think he will actually be found?Not likely, he left for San Francisco or Florida.He is but a ghost.

Confrontation 9 years, 10 months ago

Asbestos, don't you know that you can't say anything bad about any immigrant, ever (legal or illegal)? Most people in Lawrence would be happy to fill all open jobs with illegals and ban English.

hinomayo 9 years, 10 months ago

Fito was the typical male who ends up killing a woman who questions anything about his reputation, even down to how well he make a cup of coffee. While everyone is analyzing his artistic and nationality purposes, none of this relates to how he perceives women, or even the life of another man, as its just the usual set of excuses to "explain" this guys hatred for Jana Mackey. And, yes, there is this same old thing taught to women, even the social workers, psychologists and lawyers are guilty of this, that if they think they are in some position of authority where they have an illusion of being "safe" from having something violent happening to them, they believe they are quite capable of "fixing" the problem by sympathizing with the violent person. In other words, if they flatter, show kindness and loads of "kissing up" to that person, then that person could never possibly do anything "really bad" to them. I suspect that Jana had a rather critical opinion underneath, as do most gals like her and others, of those women who are victims of violence, by assuring herself that nothing would ever happen to her because she is more knowledgable and understanding of this kind of guy. Somewhat like the person who assumes that every criminal "knows" they are carrying a weapon of self defense such as a gun, so therefore, the criminal is so fearful and respectful of that criminal automatically is a mind reader from fifty yards.

50YearResident 9 years, 10 months ago

My guess (and only a guess) is that the attacker in this tragedy hid his past by using an alias and Jana was not aware of his past offenses against women. It is so easy to get enamored by an "artist" who seems to be famous both in this town and in Cuba and not even consider that he might have a hidden dark past. I bet when the truth finally comes out there will be many more incidents come to light perpetrated by this person.

ASBESTOS 9 years, 10 months ago

"And, any of you knowledgeable of Cuban immigration policy is that, as long as they step on our shores, they are granted asylum."Yes but asylum can be revoked (and should be) when the petitionee commits a violent felony, and does time. He was supposed to be deported, an asylum revoked.. This is not they type of people we need to be giving second chances in our society. We gave them one major break already, and they choose to disrespect it and do their selfish crap...and kill an American Citizen!Most you piillering me, do not know immigration law, and your opinions are a great indicator of that ignorance.

Janet Lowther 9 years, 10 months ago

"It appears now she's been the ultimate victim,"I pray that she is, put knowing what I know about this world and mankind, there will always be new victims. If everyone took charge of his or her own personal security, there would be far fewer, but stll, people will be victimized.

Boston_Corbett 9 years, 10 months ago

"This is not the type of people we need to be giving second chances in our society."Yea. Let's deport all incarcerated people back to their ancestral lands.

Sigmund 9 years, 10 months ago

It is obvious this womans life was full of contradictions. At some point it will be appropriate to discuss those. Prior to her burial and before her family, friends, and classmates have had chance to mourn her loss it not the time. Any political or ideological points that you are rushing to make will fall on grief stricken deafness. There will be plenty of time and opportunity in the future for those of us still living to discuss Jana's death, but now is the time to reflect on the magnitude of our loss.

Frank Smith 9 years, 10 months ago

Before you posted, Marion, I'd discovered my speculation about the alleged killer being a Marielito may have been in error. I was just coming back to the story to post a correction when I found your post calling me a "liar." Had you actually been able to read the English language, you would have seen that I never claimed that Fito had been kicked out in 1980. I found a reference that he's been allowed to leave in 1994, but you have apparently depended on his own statements to claim his graduation from an institute a year after his departure, if that is correct. Of course he would never lie. Except when disclosing his age (he knocked 10 years off it) or confronted with charges, of course: (From the LJW in '94) According to a police report, (Fito) choked (his ex-girl friend), struck her and cut her on the arm with the knife. She notified police after she was able to get away from the scene, Ward said.Zabel said in court that the woman and Garche had been in a two- or three-year relationship that she cut off in May. Zabel also said Garche was on felony diversion in Douglas County after being charged earlier this year with making a false writing.Garche, a critic of Cuban dictator Fidel Castro, has said he fled Cuba in the mid-1990s after the government persecuted him for political statements in his art. He was featured in a recent Journal-World series about the toughening of the U.S. ban on travel to Cuba."Cuban artist reflects on intersection of Communism, faith (12-14-03) His paintings explore topics including the suppression of religion under Castro and the emotional pain caused by the U.S. embargo."He apparently is also a religious nut, much like yourself, Marion.Of course, I don't expect you to start checking facts this late in life, given your I.Q. or your politics.

ASBESTOS 9 years, 10 months ago

Actually the question was what is a woman that was working to reduce violence against women was doing in a relationship with a woman abuser? Somebody that had actually used a weapon on a woman (though nothing is acceptable, nor is assaulting or threatening a woman, nor do you need to think I am a blood thirsty woman beater just because you disagree with me politically).I am not blaming anyone here, I am at a loss for explaniation how in the world these two could get together in the first place. How could an advocate against a man like this end up with a realationship with a man like this? She knew this was a difficult behavior to change.

ASBESTOS 9 years, 10 months ago

46 years of age too, and cannot speak english? What is his immigration status. In the "old world" such as Mexico, women are treated this way, heads up ladies.

Mike Blur 9 years, 10 months ago

Well, it's been resolved in other threads (not necessarily on that Fito was a Cuban boat refugee. And, any of you knowledgeable of Cuban immigration policy is that, as long as they step on our shores, they are granted asylum. Mexico has absolutely nothing to do with this. Marion does bring forth a worthy question about the Lawrence art community. I've always thought of the art community as elitist, exclusionist, and to a certain extent, racist. Only the pretty people are allowed.

readit 9 years, 10 months ago

I was invited to this artist's show last year, (or maybe the year before), and declined to go after his violent profile was printed in the paper. Seems my instincts were correct. Sometimes you need to listen to the little voice inside your head.

Boston_Corbett 9 years, 10 months ago

Well, actually Marion and ASBESTOS should both be put in stocks, for a variety of differing reasons. But Asbestos, who yells frequently that the world is going to h*** because of current broken immigration policies, wasn't smart enough to cogitate on the status of Cuban exiles as being totally legal. And if he was smart enough to remember this, we then have to raise that ugly racism word. Either option is not a complimentary one to him. As for the victim, she was obviously smarter, more sensitive, and more compassionate that most posters here. She participated in the KU Law Defender project, which says a lot by itself. And she undoubtedly believed, unlike so many here, in possible rehabilitation after incarceration. But that is a separate and difficult topic by itself. Condolences to this lady's classmates, friends, and family.

Jonathan Kealing 9 years, 10 months ago

Hi all,Lawrence police have confirmed that Adolfo Nunez-Garcia was arrested in Elizabeth, N.J., last night. He was booked into jail where he took his own life sometime over night, police said. We have a story in the works and we're trying to track down more information. Jonathan KealingOnline editor

Boston_Corbett 9 years, 10 months ago

" I've always thought of the art community as elitist, exclusionist, and to a certain extent, racist. Only the pretty people are allowed."Wow!?! Nothing additional needs to be said here.

Boston_Corbett 9 years, 10 months ago

ASBESTOS: your rants on immigration....and they are not discussion; they are rants... on these boards and cjonline and the mercury are numerous and well known. You have some serious issues.

Frank Smith 9 years, 10 months ago

As usual, Asbestos and Marion Lynn are looking at the world out of their backsides.This guy was a right-winger, like them, probably one of 125,000 Marielitos losers thrown out of Cuba in 1980. We've welcomed a lot worse, CONVICTED narcoterrorists such as Dr. Orlando Bosch and Luis Posada Carriles. Posada came into the US with forged documents and a Bush-appointed judge set him free. The CIA had bribed the president of Panama four years ago to pardon him for an assassination attempt and release him from prison there, but their Supreme Court recently revoked that and other paid-for clemency . I expect John McCain may travel to Florida to kiss his hind quarters in an effort to secure the emigre vote. He's sold his soul to everyone else, so why stop now?Thanks Asbestos and Marion, for reminding us once again which side you're on.

Alison Roberts 9 years, 10 months ago

I find it hard to believe that she didnt know about his past. I think she probably did but he somehow managed to assure her of his innocence or reform since the incident. I think perhaps the worst part of all of it is that he killed himself...coward. And I do find it funny that he needed a translator...I think he could speak english just fine, just chose not to...

kai 9 years, 10 months ago

Does anyone know details about his truck? Did it have a red stripe? What year was it? How long had he owned it? I ask because I am wondering about possible connections to another unsolved crime.

Brad Maestas 9 years, 10 months ago

I didn't know her personally but I know many people that did know her and this is tragic by all accounts. Just this afternoon I was told by a city employee that Garcia was successfully apprehended in New Jersey however, the coward succeeded in taking his own life by asphyxiating himself. My deepest condolences to her family and close friends.RIP Jana

jaywalker 9 years, 10 months ago

Deepest sympathies for Jana's family and friends.

moxxie_mama 9 years, 10 months ago

What a bunch of f'd up bs you people spew. Trying to get inside her mind, what she knew, what she didn't know...this is what happens with women who were abused, the blame gets thrown back on them. BS. Women never fall in love with an abuser. They fall in love with very charming men and sometimes the signs that they're going to abuse aren't so very crystal clear. The education that she fought for was that women can find themselves in that situation so easy, and then feel that it isn't so bad, that it can't happen to them...whether you're an advocate OR NOT. She had LEFT the relationship. That is THE most dangerous time for a woman. And it also shows you can do EVERYTHING RIGHT and still wind up a victim. There is no CONTRADICTION about her. I'm glad the scumball died. And you know what- I realize that innocent till proven guilty blah blah- I believe in it. But I'm not sitting in a darn courtroom as a juror- and that was someone who inspired MY life dead now, so I CAN make my judgement in the court of public opinion. Impartiality can kiss my hind end.I know that many of you are barely out of high school, but I was just thinking about this on my way home from work...I didn't ever look at Jana as if she was someone just out of high school or just another college student. I looked at her as a peer and a friend and I'm 36 years old. So maybe some of you ought to take a lesson from Jana's playbook- look at how far it got her so soon.And as far as the racial crap, that can just stop too. Jana hated racism, and she wouldn't be racist today- even if she knew what was going to happen to her. This guy obviously had serious issues. Lets deal with that rather than his race. And no, I'll never say that he should had never been released. I think the time should equal the crime. We lock people up for what they do- not for what they might do.

Godot 9 years, 10 months ago

It is interesting that Nunez was released from prison the same year that Mackey joined the defender project. I wonder if that is how she met him.If her family and friends are reading this, I offer my most sincere condolences.

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