Arrested after his roommate Brooke Preston was stabbed to death, Randy Herman Jr. has a strange defense.
Arrested after his roommate Brooke Preston was stabbed to death, Randy Herman Jr. has a strange defense. Illustration by Pat Kinsella
When he came to that morning in March 2017, all Randy Herman Jr. could see was red.
There was blood on his hands, on his body, on the floor. On the woman lying face down at his feet. On the hunting knife, usually placed next to his bed, now he holds it tightly.
Hurrying to the bathroom, he put the knife on the countertop and scrubbed, washed, and rinsed, although there was almost no difference.
Panicked, disoriented, and completely hungover, Randy started to walk out of a state that felt like a dream.
He paced in the single-story house he shared with his old friend Brook Preston. Brook Preston was 21 years old. She was now lying on the floor in the hallway lifeless, covered with a blanket.
Randy, 24, put on sports shorts and pulled a T-shirt over his head. He didn’t know what happened, but the scratches on his chest and arms told the story of a struggle.
He grabbed Brook’s key on the way out and got into her car. He didn’t know where he was going. It doesn’t matter—anywhere except that house. Anywhere away from blood.
Randy was in a daze and drove to a park less than a mile from home, where the crime scene was now. He dialed 911.
“Someone was murdered,” he told the operator, who asked Randy for details.