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Published:September 4th, 2013 08:05 EST
Why Did Leslie Jenea Chance Shoot Her Husband Todd Chance in a Remote Almond Field?

Why Did Leslie Jenea Chance Shoot Her Husband Todd Chance in a Remote Almond Field?

By John G. Kays

Why did a Bakersfield elementary school principal, Leslie Jenea Chance, 46, shoot her husband, Todd Chance, to death multiple times (in his 2011 black Ford Mustang), for some odd reason, which was positioned in a remote almond field? Apparently, the shooting homicide occurred early on a Sunday morning, a week ago Sunday, that is, August 25th; but why in the world did this shocking homicide occur at this out-in-the-sticks almond field? This doesn`t figure, not easily, anyway.

The only way this work, when picturing the unlikely scenario in your mind, is Leslie forcing Todd at gunpoint to take a casual Sunday drive and let`s go see some almonds, honey, I guess you`d have to say. With this strange frame in your mind, you have to believe that Leslie had picked out this spot well before the actual transaction, unless, of course, the entire scene went down a different way. Any way you line up the ducks, they`re a bit crooked and don`t want to cooperate!

I suspect, this is why Bakersfield let her go; their ducks could use some tidying up also. Okay, but she was spotted (that Sunday morning) abandoning Todd`s black Mustang on a suburban street (crossroads are Tigerflower Drive and Wheatland Avenue in Bakersfield), I understand. I speculate, but a positive identification by a reliable eyewitness probably stands up; Leslie Chance`s physical appearance is too obvious not to notice it. The murder weapon was found in the jettisoned sports car also; a good deal of blood must have been present, since the killing occurred in the vehicle (as stated by the police).

Am I the only one who thought of Joseph Wambaugh`s true crime book, The Onion Field, when seeing the riveting story on the nightly news? This case occurred in March of 1963, where two LA cops were kidnapped by Gregory Powell and Jimmy Lee Smith (two ex-cons), and driven to a remote onion field, also in Bakersfield, Ca. Alright, so that was 50 years ago, but the case is very famous (I`ve read the book and seen the movie many times). Okay, so maybe this is what gave me the idea that Leslie semi-kidnapped her husband, forcing him out into the boonies, an almond field no less.

Powell shot officer Campbell, thinking his crime (kidnapping) was a mirror of Lindburgh, yet he was getting it wrong; but why did Leslie do it? Their family finances were squeaky clean, we`re hearing, and the couple`s employment situation appears to be tidy as well. Yet, Todd Chance was a trucker and was away from home a lot on jobs; what else was he doing when on the road? Could marital infidelity be a reason behind Leslie`s homicidal rage? If it wasn`t money, then the evil green eyed-monster, jealousy, is the only other Deadly Sin available (for murderous motive - ID`s Candice Delong thought of that, not me). 

In the way of character references and Leslie`s projected image, once again, we`re totally baffled, hands up in the air grasping for illusory straws! Sorry about those allusions, mixed metaphors, or whatever, but Ms Chance was a long time teacher, pulling herself up through the ranks and making it to principal of Fairview Elementary. The students and parents are in denial, total disbelief, as they remember her as being a great person and a role model for the community. But no one knows what goes on behind close doors. Almond field, onion field, Bakersfield, principal, model citizen, homicide; we have a lot of sorting out at task!