The strange case of the unhinged professor: Nancy Drew could have solved this one

The Norfolk County District Attorney back then was Bill Delahunt, now a Democratic congressman from Massachusetts, who says he barely remembers the case.

Amy Bishop went on to graduate from Northeastern, earn a Ph.D. from Harvard and be investigated but not charged in a case in which twin pipe bombs were mailed in 1993 to a physician/professor at Harvard with whom Bishop had tangled. She went on to show other signs of instability — before, at a routine faculty meeting, she killed three of her colleagues and wounded three others.

Now the AP offers the piece de resistance: “…. investigators recently examined a photograph taken of Dr. Bishop’s bedroom shortly after her brother’s death in 1986 and enlarged it. They found a newspaper article that described someone killing a relative with a shotgun and then stealing a getaway car from a car dealership.” On Saturday, Boston Herald reporter Dave Wedge offered more details: The newspaper, left on the floor of Bishop’s bedroom, was the National Enquirer and it was opened to a story about the shooting that year of “Dallas’ ... Patrick Duffy’s parents in Montana. ... Two teenagers gunned down Duffy’s parents and fled to a car dealer, where they stole a pickup truck at gunpoint.”

After shooting Seth in the chest, Amy fled the house still carrying the 12-gauge shotgun, ran to a nearby auto dealership, and pointed the gun at a mechanic from whom she demanded a car.

Rep. Delahunt, 68, the district attorney during what appears to be a terrible bungling of justice — with deadly consequences for the Huntsville campus of the University of Alabama — would be wise to decide to retire from Congress before the voters make the decision for him.

He told the Cape Cod Times that he has not decided whether he will run for his eighth term, and that the Bishop case will not weigh heavily in his decision. "The standard that I like to use,” he explained, “is: Are there issues that I feel strongly about that I can be effective on? I'll spend some time asking that. This [Bishop issue] is not something I'll spend much time on." His opponents, undoubtedly, will point to his alleged lack of oversight in 1986, and ask, “So what else is new?”

On Sunday, the Boston Herald’s Jessica Van Sack reported that Joseph P. Kennedy III, 29, a grandson of Robert Kennedy who had been flirting with running for Delahunt’s seat, told her that he was not running.

If Amy Bishop did murder her brother, then her decision to name the youngest of her four children, and only son, Seth Bishop Anderson, is worthy of fiction — of a sort far darker than any Nancy Drew tale.