Father Remembers Criado Deaths: Part 2

, Posted: Fri, July 13 2012 at 8:53 PM, Updated: Fri, July 13 2012 at 11:08 PM

It’s been nearly a year since the Tragedy on 10th street, four children and their mother killed by a husband during what officials say was a domestic dispute.

Now Tabasha Criado’s father is coming out to the public ...with his side of the story. 

NBC5's Jennifer Elliott spoke with her biological father and brings us the second half of our special coverage on the anniversary of the Criado deaths. 

Marzuq Johnson admits he wasn’t the perfect father. He never even met Tabasha Criado and his four grandchildren face to face.
but now, he’s hoping to change the past by protecting other’s futures.

'Marzuq' Willie Johnson moved to the Rogue Valley in April, waiting to attend the trial of Jordan Criado, his daughter and grandchildren’s accused killer.
"The only thing Jordan wants is to die," Marzuq tells us. "That tells me the death penalty doesn't work. He wants to die. What the death penalty will do in his case is give him what he wants."

On July 18th of last year police arrived to a house fire—only to find a woman and her four children moments from dying.
Marzuq continues, "I talked to her 10 hours before their murders."

According to officials the father, Jordan Criado, stabbed Tabasha and two of the kids. Then set the home on fire and attempted to commit suicide.
“I don’t wish what I’ve gone through with Tabasha and the kids on anyone." states Marzuq.

So now he holds their memories here in a garden--five of each plant for each person he lost.

And this isn’t Marzuq‘s first encounter with loss and violence.
The 57 year old says his grandfather abused him frequently... "Eventually I ended up in the state reform school, because at the age of twelve I decided I was either going to be a man or keep taking it."

Marzuq also says one of his sisters died at the hands of a violent man, "The sucker killed her and buried her in the back yard."

Years later he himself spent 12 years in prison for voluntary manslaughter after a gun went off and killed another man in his home.

With so much violence in his background he knows how it happens and he thinks it's time to end it. "I’m doing what I can," he remarks. "With little of nothing and little knowledge."

Marzuq says the first step is to focus less on criminal prosecution and more on prevention. "I want to see us focus more on prevention. How we can keep my wife from getting raped."

In fact, in his own life, his deepest regret is that he didn't prevent the death of his daughter and four grandchildren...

"I do know Jordan had my number, he could have called and talked to me. The regrets I have are that I wasn’t there. I think if I was there he would have thought a lot more before he did what he did.” 

Now as he tends the garden in his daughter and grand children's names he lives with the sorrow, sadness, and  guilt of not doing more.

The Rogue Valley currently offers programs to help the abused and abusers alike. Community works offers a twenty-four hour hotline for victims. It is (541) 779-4357 or toll free at 1 (855) 216-2111. And a there is also a batters intervention hotline at (541 772-4055. For more details on programs you can contact community works at (541) 779-2393 or on their website at http://community-works.org/

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