Hello Mr. Barer~
I am a true crime reader from way back. And I just
spent two solid days cuddled up on my bed unable to peel myself away from Head Shot until the very last page. And now I'm reading it over again. I am hinged…and UN-hinged by it. What an engrossing and beautifully executed writing of this horrendously gruesome and profoundly sad story. It was a week or so ago, that one of the kids we grew up with in the neighborhood stopped by for hours of coffee and chit
chat. And somewhere along the way we got to talking about the long ago story of the St. Pierres and the murders that blew us all away here. You just didn't here about this kinda stuff in our town, let alone it being kids you grew up with!! After our guest left, I found myself Googling the St. Pierres and to my utter
astonishment, I discover your book–I couldn't believe it! I ordered it immediately.
This isn't just tucking into the usual good true crime paperback–this one touches me personally. I knew Chris St. Pierre, and fairly well. I attended 6 years at Stewart Jr. High and Lincoln High Schools with him.
It was at Stewart that we shared several classes and became buddies. Until reading this book, I had completely forgotten about his heart condition and surgery, and then as I read the memories came flooding back of that cute kid and him telling me about his
heart and showing me his scars. And I also remember just loving his thick luxurious head of hair which at the base of his neck he had a small patch of blond, almost like a weird little hair birthmark, and
couldn't resist playing with it and teasing him–he sat directly in front of me in Geography class. We
had to be pulled in line quite often for talking in class. When they say this was a good kid–he was!
Even as a 7th grader at the young age of 13 he possessed a magnetic personality and a dry, ironic wit
that could send me into fits of laughter. And he remained to be just a sweetheart of a guy all through
school to graduation. Which of course then I lost contact with him.
Then in June1984, I will never forget my best girlfriend Kathy (who knew Chris from kindergarten on
up, lived just up the street from the St. Pierres) calling me at about 11:30 at night with the shocking
news on the front page of the Tribune. I remember literally having to stop her as she was reading and
relaying the horrible details of what they had done so I could take a breath and try to absorb what she was telling me. I remember saying "Stop it!! NO WAY!! How can this be??–NOT Chris!!" It was so mind
boggling and heartbreaking for all of us who grew up with him to find out this was his fate. And the
shocking nature of what they were involved in right at our back door was beyond comprehension!!
I lived, and still live, only blocks from that house. Pacific Ave. is a main hub in this city and an oft
traveled route for us. And I kid you not…there isnot a time we pass by Erickson's and that house to
this day that my mind does not go to the eerie and frightening visions of what went on there. It's never
faded. Same thing when we have to go into Fife and pass over the Puyallup River Bridges that I don't
think of what happened to John Achord.
Upon receiving the book and of course going straight to the pictures, I wasn't ready to see my worst
imaginings of twenty four years appear before my eyes!! And reading the book on what acutally
transpired was just bone chilling. By the time I finished I was just filled with an utter and profound
sadness. As gruesome as it all is, in the end it is just an absolutely tragic tale. And learning the
slick moves made between the prosecuter and Andrew Webb is just revolting, making the story even more profound.
As far as Paul St. Pierre, your story rings true. There are tales told to this day by the kids from the
old neighborhood of how screwed up Paul always seemed to be. Tales of things he may have done or not have done that twist and turn of which nobody will ever know the real truth. Tales of how blood thirsty he seemed and the joy he seemed to take in bragging about his guns and murder. One of our closest friends (who was Paul's best friend during their Stewart Jr. High years) was drinking with him one night at Ray & Genes Tavern and then over at the house not long after the shooting at IGA, and he tells how Paul was just going on and on and on about it and couldn't let go of it, and it just freaked our friend out to no end. He says he made an excuse and a hasty exit and never went back. You can see the eeriness on him to this day when he recalls that night. And then to learn what transpired just weeks later makes it all the more so.
Thank you for giving us such a comprehensive well put together story of this tragic and frightening tale. It is riveting. I will be sure to be checking out some of your other titles in the near future.
HEAD SHOT – the updated edition is now available for advance order from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Booksamillion, Alibris, and your favorite local or online book seller.
Thank you, Stacey. It wasn't an easy book to write and research for many reasons — the subject matter, the complexities of the trials, and the dynamics within the Webb family itself all made for unique challenges. Knowing that I "got it right" means a great deal to me.