This Week’s Best Profile

Here’s a new feature we’ll be starting: the best recent profile I’ve read, every Monday, for your leisurely enjoyment during the week.

This week, it’s not the New York Times Magazine’s ill-timed cover story on Rafa Nadal. It’s the one in Texas Monthly that includes this passage:

As a juvenile, Erin could not be taken directly to the sheriff’s office for questioning, and so she appeared that afternoon before a justice of the peace. “After everything we had heard, I was picturing a monster, for lack of a better word,” said Sergeant Vance. “Here was someone who had dreamed up a scheme to murder her family and manipulated people into carrying out her plan. And then in walks this tiny, meek, blond-headed girl who couldn’t fight her way out of a wet paper sack.” The judge informed Erin of her rights and asked if she would be willing to speak with investigators. She declined to meet with the Texas Ranger or Detective Almon, electing to make a written statement instead. The brief account, put down in her girlish handwriting, echoed what she had told Chief Sanders: There had been smoke and strangers with swords, and she could not remember much else.

Why did this Texas girl have her family murdered?

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