Will Justice Ever be Done In The Elliott Smith Death?
It has been years and years since Alyson Camus started writing extensively about the death of Elliott Smith for rock nyc and as interest has grown so has the definition of what constitutes justice. For me, I am far from convinced Jennifer Chiba committed premeditated murder. I don’t think that is what happened. But I am pretty sure the way the story is being told isn’t the truth and it is up to LAPD to resurrect the dormant case. Essentially, the LAPD claim they don’t know how he died. How can they when they won’t rectify the seriously botched initial investigation?
Look, in our lives we live with constant injustice on every level to the point where injustices are the nature of nature, it is difficult to fight it in our own lives and not always possible to see it in public. And when you can gain some form of justice it feels like a miracle, it seems impossible, like winning the lottery because you can’t fight power, you can only question authority.
Elliott Smith’s case, where his girlfriend claimed he committed suicide by stabbing himself in the chest, is still open and it is really a case where it shouldn’t be impossible to figure out what happened: a coupla lie detector machines should do the job, and if her story is straight up, however bizarre it sounds, well OK, let it drop. But in a world where there is little justice, this little justice is worth pushing for.
You may remember we once had a seance and while it may have been a goof on our behalf, still, there is truth to what should be said: it isn’t revenge against an individual but closure for Smith, to let him go safe in the knowledge as to what choice, either choice, he may have made. Smith’s last moments were a quite shocking act of extreme violence: in the grand scheme of things, condemning Chiba isn’t what we want to get close to when we get close to Smith, what we want to do is get close to the truth so we can embrace it either way. Whether this strange and unfitting violent end was done by him or done by someone else, we, the third party, want the act seen for what it was and not for what it might have been.
Suicide is never about the person who died (murder is), it is about us left behind. Interpreting his end is like interpreting his lyrics, we shed light on it to shed light on us. But when a murder occurs, if a murder occurred, it is like we discover Shakespeare didn’t write “Romeo And Juliet”. It levels off our interpretation.
Also, for better or worse, suicide is the end of a persons story at the place they decided to end it, and murder is an interruption of a life just about randomly. It matters how people die, it matters how an artist dies. Would Sylvia Path read the way she reads if she didn’t kill herself?
Smith deserves a finishing end. He deserves to be known for what he was. Until the LAPD reopen the case, util they get to the truth, and claim he was either murdered or killed himself, there will be no justice.