I do not typically share much about my loved one's history online for fear it will attract negative attention, but as it is a matter of public record I see no harm in talking about it from our perspective.
Like most family members, we are somewhat protective of our loved ones. Most of us believe they are already serving out a punishment for their crime(s), therefore, why subject them to further condemnation from the public by blogging about it.
In discussing it with Brian, we decided to go ahead and share his story in order for others to understand how it is people find themselves in these types of situations, and ideally to remove some of the stigma associated with incarceration. In truth, sharing his story will hopefully allow the world to view the human aspect of his life, and that of individuals like him, as opposed to the numerous labels one is given after committing such an offense (i.e. monster, murderer, killer, evil, cold-blooded, felon, convict, etc.).
In 1994 Brian and some friends drove to a popular hangout spot in Anchorage. While there, he and his friends got into a verbal altercation with the occupants of another vehicle. In the end, this altercation left two young men dead, and Brian tried, convicted and sentenced to 159 years for first and second degree murder for their deaths. It is an incredibly tragic story of gun violence, and how quickly the lives of three families would be forever altered.
I often think about those young men whose lives were taken due to my loved ones actions some 26 years ago, as well as their surviving family members, as I am certain they still grieve the loss of them. For years it was a source of inner conflict for me as I tried to grapple with the reality that their pain was caused by someone I love dearly. I know he regrets his actions deeply, but they will never know the depths of his remorse.
How does one take responsibility and hold themselves accountable when they have been the cause of so much suffering to others? For Brian, it is through deeds and actions. He believes by becoming a better version of his former self, and living in an honorable way, he honors those to whom he has caused pain. It may not seem like much to others, but under the circumstances, and within the confines of the prison system, it will have to suffice for the time being.