Friends of a Gladstone psychiatrist are devastated that her former lover did not give her any warning about his wife's anger.
Irina Puscariu had broken off her relationship with Roscoe Griffin, an Air Force colonel, when she discovered he was married, according to a retired Kansas City police officer who was friends with the victim. The officer asked not to be identified.
According to court documents, Griffin and his wife, Shannon O'Roark Griffin, a retired NASA aerospace engineer, were having marital problems. They were receiving counseling in Kansas where Griffin is currently working. He has served as director of reserved forces for the Air Force Space Command in Colorado.
Griffin told investigators that he and his wife were discussing a divorce when his wife stormed out of the meeting. Griffin did not alert Puscariu about his wife's ire or that he had told his wife he was leaving her for his lover.
"After his wife stomped out of this meeting, what was the problem with contacting Irina and saying, 'There's a problem here?'" the friend asked. "Irina would have never opened that door if she had known this was detrimental."
Investigators say Puscariu did open the door and that O'Roark Griffin shot the therapist in the face three times. The victim's horrified mother watched her daughter's life ebb away in front of her.
The Romanian mother just arrived last fall from Romania and spoke virtually no English. She helped investigators narrow the search onto O'Roark Griffin, according to court documents.
Kansas Highway Patrol stopped O'Roark Griffin on Interstate 35 near the Oklahoma border. She is being held in Sedgwick County Jail on a $1 million bond while awaiting extradition to Missouri.
Update: She is in the Clay County Jail as of Thursday. Click here to read that story.
Friends say Puscariu's mother is terrified and wants to return to Romania as soon as the case is concluded. And her daughter's memory will linger.
"It was like losing a sister. I can't imagine not seeing her again," Puscariu's friend said. "I can't even drive by that house without going crazy over it."
Puscariu worked at a Veterans Administration hospital.
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