Teenage Lesbian Couple Shot, One Killed, in South Texas Park

Violet Andrews Park stretches over about ten acres overlooking Corpus Christi Bay in Portland, Texas, where it’s frequented by bird-watchers, bikers, kite-surfers and other locals. Developed for the preservation of native wildlife and the town’s newest park, Violet Andrews is “more of a nature area” which attracts families during the daytime but remains quiet and unlit at night. Nobody is certain what brought 19-year-old Mollie Judith Olgin and 18-year-old Mary Christine Chapa to the park last Friday, or if the “two loud bangs” a resident heard around midnight were firecrackers or if they were the gunshots that ended Olgin’s life and left Chapa critically wounded.

The young lesbian couple were found by park visitors around 9AM, unconscious in a knee-deep grassy area. Chapa was rushed to the hospital, where she remains in serious, but stable, condition, but it was already too late for Mollie Judith Olgin. Both had gunshot wounds to the head. They were both so young.

Portland Police Chief Randy Wright told reporters, “We’re not really sure how they got to the point that they were found. It is a scenic overlook with a wooden deck and there is a place at the edge of the deck where you can actually go down a very steep incline into a grassy area that leads down to the shoreline and that’s where they found.”

Olgin & Chapa had been together for five months, but if you’ve ever been an 18-year-old lesbian in love, you know that five months can feel like five years. Not just any five years, but the best five years ever, really. Friends told reporters from KrisTV that the girls “never attracted any negative attention for their relationship.” They described the girls as “full of love and laughter.” It’s just that they were both so young.

“You always hear the ‘they never did anything wrong, why was it them, they were so innocent.’ But Mollie and Christine were innocent,” said Mollie’s roommate Samantha Garret. “I’ve been trying to think of anyone that I know that would actually want to harm them for any reason, especially anyone for them being a couple but not one person comes to mind.”

Wright said they’d recovered a bullet casing from a large-caliber gun at the scene but no weapon. Olgin’s car was found near the scene. Police seem confident a third party was involved. As to whether or not the attack was related to the girls’ sexual orientation, Wright told the press, “that’s always something that we’re looking for, but as of this point, we have not been able to establish that that had anything to do with the attack.”

Regarding concerns that there might be “a dangerous person our and about in Portland,” Wright offered:

“You know, we always caution people to be aware of their surroundings, be careful. Portland is a safe community but these things can happen anywhere. We have to always be alert for these types of dangers. This particular case, it does have some of the earmarks of a targeted attack. We’ll know more about that as we go forward in the investigation. For the time being, we’re taking some extra precautions in our parks. We’re putting them under extra patrol.”

It’s not just the victims that seemed particularly “innocent,” but the town itself: according to city-data, there’s only been one reported homicide in Portland since 1999, which took place in 2007. Wright told reporters that their last murder happened two years ago. The town leans slightly right politically, and over half its residents are affiliated with either the Catholic or Southern Baptist Church. It’s known to be a more “upscale” community with lots of prime beachfront property.

Mollie Olgin grew up in nearby Ingleside, where she graduated from Ingleside High School in 2011. Christine Chapa, or “Kristene” as it is spelled on her facebook page and high school graduation notice, is from Sinton, about thirty minutes from Portland, where she’d just graduated from Sinton High School (“sinton fucking high school,” as she noted on facebook.) Mollie was an undergraduate at Texas A&M University in Corpus Christi, where she lived and worked at Taco Bell, and where Kristene planned to begin school this fall. Both Ingleside and Sinton are small towns near Corpus Christi, although Sinton, described as “friendly” and “charming” by Wikipedia, is more inland and its poverty rate is more than double that of Ingleside’s. Both girls had big bright futures ahead of them. Hopefully Chapa still does. You see: they were both so young.

Ingleside Independent School District superintendent Troy Mircovich told The Caller that “Olgin was a model student… She was on the right track. We hate to see one that has that potential and gets taken away. It was definitely a shock for the school community.”

Chapa was an accomplished athlete at Sinton High School, which boasts one of the premiere athletic programs in its Class. Friends told The Caller that she “liked to have fun” and that both girls “like to put smiles on people’s faces.”

Apparently Chapa has been able to communicate somewhat with police, who are guarding what they know. Mollie’s parents told police that they knew the girls were “very close.”

The Caller’s article ends on this note:

Sinton resident Alma Suarez, a substitute teacher, said she can’t think of any reason for Chapa to be targeted. And especially in a community with so many churches, she said.

“I don’t understand the crime; I don’t know if it was enjoyment,” Suarez said. “I don’t know what to say anymore.”

 Me neither.
Profile photo of Riese

Riese is the 33-year-old CEO, CFO and Editor-in-Chief of Autostraddle.com as well as an award-winning writer, blogger, fictionist, copywriter, video-maker and aspiring cyber-performance artist who grew up in Michigan, lost her mind in New York City, and now lives in The Bay Area. Her work has appeared in nine books including "The Bigger the Better The Tighter The Sweater: 21 Funny Women on Beauty, Body Image & Other Hazards Of Being Female," magazines including Marie Claire and Curve, and all over the web including Nerve, Bitch, Emily Books and Jezebel. She had a very popular personal blog once upon a time, and then she recapped The L Word, and then she had the idea to make this place, and now here we all are!

Riese has written 1764 articles for us.

58 Comments

  1. Thumb up 1

    Please log in to vote

    thanks for doing some extra digging to give us a better understanding, Riese.

    but seriously, this is so fucked up. they’re so young, they still have their whole life ahead of them. and from the reports it appears they were fun/likeable people. I hate to think that they were targeted because of their sexuality, but it really does look that way at this point. which is not just sad, but maddening.

    ugh.

  2. Thumb up 1

    Please log in to vote

    I’m so, so torn up about this. They’re so young. :( I hope their family and friends put together some sort of way I can donate money toward Kristene’s medical costs and maybe a college fund or I don’t even know. I just feel like they’re my lesbian little sisters and I need to take care of them however I can.

  3. Thumb up 0

    Please log in to vote

    Rest in peace Mollie. And Kristene, fight okay? Fight for your life girl and tell us your story, with your help maybe we can find who those motherfuckers are and we can bring justice to your ladylove’s death.

  4. Thumb up 6

    Please log in to vote

    I found out about this at 2 am last night and fell asleep and woke up sure it was just a strange, sad dream but no, it’s real and it really happened.

    Why on EARTH is this not getting more coverage from major news outlets? Today, in the Austin American-Statesman– nothing. This should be page-one or page-two news.

    Thank you Autostraddle, Jezebel, and other online media sites, otherwise I might never have heard about this and it happened in my own state. This is insane.

  5. Thumb up 0

    Please log in to vote

    Read about this earlier today and sat at my desk feeling crushed, angry, and scared. The news article I read was rather vague, but I knew I could count on AS to bring some more light to who these beautiful, YOUNG women are. My heart hurts. I don’t know what else to say.

  6. Thumb up 0

    Please log in to vote

    Can’t really say anything that hasn’t been already said, can’t really say anything at all. I feel crushed for them. I’d like to hope this isn’t related to sexual orientation but I feel a deep pain in the pit of my stomach that fears it is. Either way, this is so tragic and my heart and prayers go out to these 2 young beautiful girls and their families.

  7. Thumb up 1

    Please log in to vote

    This is heart wrenching. What’s sad, too, is that since this happened in Texas, it could have been someone who legally had the “right” to conceal and carry a weapon; they could have just gone to the area with no harm in mind and saw the lesbian couple and decided to they should do something to stop them.

    As it’s been said earlier, “fucking Texas.”

  8. Thumb up 1

    Please log in to vote

    This is just completely heartbreaking.

    It actually makes me lose my faith in humanity that one of these girls actually died because someone might have had a problem with their sexuality. They are beautiful girls, and they seemed so in love.

    Sexuality being the cause or not, how could anyone possibly live with themselves after doing something so horrendous to two completely innocent young women? I can’t even begin to understand.. It makes me so sad.

  9. Thumb up 0

    Please log in to vote

    Me & my girlfriend were there visiting when this happened…hits so close to home…as two lesbians walking the beach and enjoying sunsets…who knows who is watching and hating…so sad that we have to be on constant alert that our lifestyle can cause others to hate. Me & my girlfriend are so sad and we wish that our love spreads and families heal. Were both moms raising three kids I cant imagine the lost of a child…God Bless All…Prayers for all friends & family..

  10. Thumb up 2

    Please log in to vote

    As a 51 yera old queer identified female, I have lived thru the assasination of icons like Harvey Milk & Matthew Shepard. I was a newly *out* baby dyke in Miami when Anita Bryant stormed thru and spewed her homophobic venom. These stories are always shocking and disheartening but we can not respond with fear and hate. Because when we do, we give them what they want- proof that we are *immoral.* How do we win the battle? By showing them by our very lives that all we are doing is loving. And is love ever wrong? Not in my book. When the homophobes show violence and tell lies about us, there’s no need to argue when we are being the better people and purer examples of *good people.* Homophobia is exactly what it sounds like- a phobia: a persistent, irrational fear of a specific object, activity, or situation. And they fear us because they’re ignorant. Let’s show them that our lives are no different than theirs. We go to school, we go to work, we pay bills, feed children, love our families. What could they object to? Some people will say that the bible says it’s an abomination. Then so are tattoos, and a slew of other things…read here: http://wellcraftedpuppies.com/node/71
    Let’s not try to beat them at their own game. Let’s rise above and let G_d (or whatever you believe) sort us out. I’m pretty sure we will be the chosen ones.
    ~peace
    d

  11. Thumb up 0

    Please log in to vote

    Truly tragic. I hope they catch the murderer. My prayers for these girls and their families.

    Comment for Riese: “but if you’ve ever been an 18-year-old LESBIAN in love” – I can’t believe that phrase actually got inserted into your article/post; you could’ve left out the word “lesbian” here. At this point, without knowing the actual motive of the fatal attacks, the girls being lesbian is only incidental. They were young women – teenagers; it seems you’re obsessing on their sexual orientation which detracts from the real story of this tragedy.

    • Thumb up 0

      Please log in to vote

      I completely agree with you. As a female, even though we don’t like to admit it, we are a weaker sex physically. I truly believe that it could have just been two female best friends that could have been preyed upon like these two girls were. And as for the person who said ‘fucking texas’ I highly doubt it was a person who had their concealed hand gun license because the only guns you can carry legally are registered which would make it easier to track.

    • Thumb up 2

      Please log in to vote

      I think Riese was making the point that even though they’d only been together few months, when you’re 18 and and in love with another woman all your emotions get magnified and everything feels so much more intense. She wasn’t speculating they were shot for their sexuality, but that they were young, in love and now one of them is dead. I was so desperately in love with my first serious girlfriend when I was 18 and I think a lot of other people have similar stories, the fact that’s been taken away from them at that point where everything feels like the last scene of a romance movie just adds to the tragedy.

      • Thumb up 0

        Please log in to vote

        Rape and murder by itself is “hateful” and “heinous” regardless of the “motivation” for the violence committed on the victims, regardless of the “label” put on them by public opinion. In other words, if these two ladies were straight, not lesbians, the act would be considered less horrible??? Why are we putting the value on a lesbian higher than a straight person? This is extremely frustrating to me. When anyone is raped, brutalized, murdered, or whatever, it shouldn’t matter what the label.

      • Thumb up 1

        Please log in to vote

        I understand the point that was trying to be made but what I was trying to say is that ANY young couple that just start dating for them it feels like a romance movie; the best relationship you’ve ever had that’s capable of lasting forever. It’s not necessary to add the whole lesbian/gay aspect as if, for a heterosexual relationship, we don’t feel like that towards our special other. Nobody knows what the motivation was for them to be brutally raped, beaten, then shot execution style but it has already been said by the police chief that he doesn’t think they were targeted because of their sexual preference. I feel like people are just pushing the lesbian issue to get more media coverage and I think that’s wrong. As females we should already feel passionately about stories like this because it’s our sex that are being targeted. It shouldn’t be getting more attention from people just because they were a young lesbian couple.

  12. Thumb up 1

    Please log in to vote

    I never understood killing someone simply because they were of color, queer, trans*, or etc. How can people hold so much hatred in their hearts? Why are people so terrible to others? Why can’t people understand hating someone doesn’t help anyone in the end? It just pushes forward a cycle of sadness, disgust, anger, and even more hatred.

    I wish the best for the families of both girls during this trying time. I wish the best for Mary Chapa in recovery. I don’t know what else to say. I feel anything else I can say would be unworthy of the situation. And it probably would be.

  13. Thumb up 0

    Please log in to vote

    It’s hars fo hear how my best friend died at such an eaely age, because of some bastard that descided to take her life.. You were such a great person! Always had your arms wide open for anyone who needed a hug, or just some random person. You never cared if they were strangers, because you knew that at some point they would become your friend.. You had a diffrrent color hair everytime I saw you, beautiful eyes, an even more beautiful smile, a shoulder for anyone who needed a shoulder to cry on, you had a HUGE heart.. I can’t see why this happened to you.. You don’t deserve this!!! RIP My beautiful Mollie!
    I regret not goin to see you more when I had a chance, even droppin by TacoBell while you were at work. It’s sad. But now I know I have the best angel God can give anyone up there, watching over me and watching over all of us, mainly Kristene. Take care of her, love. We all loved you very much. You are so beautiful inside and out! You never did anything to deserve such a horrible thing, or Kristene. I just wanted to let you know, “you have an absolutrly breathtaking hinney, like really, that thing is good, and I would love to be friends with it”
    Ha I love how you would always use pick up lines on everyone. With that one above is how we started talking. You’re an amazing person and friend, I love you so much! like Leah put, “Death may end a life, but not a friendship,” you’re gonna be in all our hearts forever! & Kristene, keep fighting, baby girl! You’re already half way there. You’re up & communicating, get better, you’re a strong woman. & thank you so much for making Mollie happy. You have no idea how much that means to all of us. We love y’all! RIP, Olgin! <3

  14. Thumb up 0

    Please log in to vote

    Texas has to be the gay capitol of the united states (no pun intended) …so i cannot just sit here and led myself to believe that these two women were shot because of their sexual preference. Maybe i am that naive. (I dont wana believe it. =-(

Contribute to the conversation...

You must be logged in to post a comment.