A Comment From Renee Haley
"I have been reading your post for several months now and I have wanted to let so many people know what we know. We have had to wait until the preliminary trial was waived to let everyone know what is going on with the case. Of course you have heard we are not happy with the deal to put it mildly.
When we took this case to the Cleveland County DA Greg Mashburn, he did not seem to think that any charges were waranted. But he thought that maybe some probationary period might be in order. So we did not agree from the get go. We immediately made it known that we wanted to see jail time happen. What we really wanted is to see a trial happen, but over the months we have found that the DA and his office seem to not want to go to trial for the reason that since he was so graciously given his office by the local FOP [Fraternal Order of Police], he does not want to put away one of their finest. In other words, we do not think that he would put 100% of his efforts or his office efforts into a trial.
It seems like no one wants to address the fact and the stupidity of shooting a snake that was stuck in a bird house. Much less a non-poisonous snake. The snake in question being a black rat snake, by the way, at 2:30 the next morning was still stuck in the bird house and was removed by a Norman Animal control officer. The snake was never hit by a bullet, the stupid rookie missed twice. The second bullet hitting my son. These guys stepped over a shovel, a hoe and some hedge clippers to use a gun to try and hit the snake. They never used those garden tools. Michelle Key the first officer on the scene tried to use the handle of the hoe to no avail, and then when the boy cops showed up, it was time to show off.
Officer Robert Shawn Richardson said and I quote from the OSBI report "I guess we'll have to shoot it" then the rookie Paul Bradley Rogers said "I'll do it, I just got out of CLEET training". I am appaulled at the next bit of information. The rookie said "Fire in the hole" before his first shot. This was a joke to them, they were showing off for the girl cop. These guys were not interested in doing things right this night. If they would have, things would have been different.
My husband was in his shop not more than 60 yards away with his sliding doors open with music up loud, I was mowing our front yard with a push mower the same distance away, my father had just picked up our boys to go fishing at the pond, they had been there 5 minutes when the first shot rang out, 6 seconds later the second shot came. My father two months over a stroke he had, could barely muster the strength to lift my 50lb 5 year old son plus keep my 2 year old in check while they climbed up the hill to get to the 4 wheeler.
We did not know what had happened, until 2 minutes later when he drove up to me in our front yard. I yelled "What", Jack, my husband, came running to find our son bleeding from the head, knowing his life was gone from the first look at his injury. He yelled, what happened, He then began running around yelling "who shot my son?" Finally we heard some people coming from behind some trees, they were wandering what had happened. There were two of the cops, plus some neighbors. They acted like they did not know what was going on, and we were too messed up in our heads to even think it was cops that shot our son. We did not find this out until the Noble Police Chief, Ben Daves, came to the hospital to tell us.
These cops stayed as far away from the carnage they created as they could. They did not even see my son or the fatal injury they caused.
The neighbor that originally called the police about the snake, seems to be siding with the cops, they got to her some how. She won't even talk to us. Her 16 year old daughter got on the internet and fished up some photos of a rattlesnake and told the cops thats what the snake was. The birdhouse was not even in her backyard. It was her neighbors back yard. This neighbor has been extremely stand offish to us. Not even allowing us to talk to her daughter about what happened, we know that both of them are witnesses, other neighbors of theirs saw them watching the cops as they performed their "duties".
The whole mess has turned our lives upside down. My son, Dalton, relives this day everyday. I relive this day everyday. My husband relives this everyday. The only way we have gotten through these days is God. We know that God has our son. We know that God did not take our son from us. We know that God did not cause this to happen. It was the cops, their pride and arrogance killed my son. The cop thinking he could hit a moving target killed my son, the sergeant cop who said lets shoot it killed my son. Continue praying for us as this is still so very difficult for our family. Thank you so much for the uplifting comments. We read them often. Please, help us get the word out. April 30th at 8:45 a.m. is the court date in front of Judge Lucas at Norman, Oklahoma.
This is a video link of my father telling about the tragedy of losing my son. It is heart-wrenching to our family."
It's so simple even a DA should understand it.
The Four Rules
1. All firearms are always loaded
2. Never let the muzzle of a firearm point at anything you are not willing to destroy
3. Keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot
4. Be sure of your target and what is behind it
4. Be sure of your target and what is behind it.
Labels: Austin Haley