To steer away from the general news trend of the last couple weeks, of discussions on gun laws and what should be done to prevent mass shootings (on this corner of the blog world at least), I’m going to relate something less opinion-begging but, still finds a relation to all these issues.
Court records show that a 65 year old mother requested a protective order from her 33 year old son, diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, after he threatened to kill her. Allegedly, he “pushed her on a bed, twisted her arm back and threatened to kill her.” In her request for protection, her words are definitive of the belief that her son would carry out his threat: “I will know that he will kill me. I am fearful for my life” she wrote. Last week, she and her husband were found murdered in their home; their son is being held “in lieu of a $50,000 bond” in Tennessee.
The request for a protective order by the mother was made in 2009, however she failed to show up in court for the proceedings and the request was cancelled. I don’t know what happened between them and their son, between the years of 2009 and the present, but it seems that no other protective order was requested. Court records also show that he was on a five year probation for an assault charge that would have ended in October of this year and, that he had been ordered to take domestic violence classes. Whether he sought or received treatment for his mental disorder is also not clear, the article writes.
Their son also had numerous other charges against him, occurring over the last number of years. Just this May, he attacked someone with a butcher knife in Memphis.
Even though this incident wasn’t a shooting, one can still relate it to much of the recent debate on gun control. This was a mentally ill individual who still managed to harm someone, even though he didn’t have a gun. Perhaps this is one for strong proponents of the second amendment; although, it is true that you can hurt more people with a gun. I only hope that in all states, such a man would have been unable to purchase a gun due to a thorough background check and mental health check. Such checks are usually available through the FBI’s “National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS).” This may seem like common practice for those who want to purchase a gun, but the system involved in purchasing a gun is not necessarily a uniform or stringent one. I just recently read that in Florida, sharing of this information from the FBI’s database by law enforcement with those who actually issue permits is lacking.
Things are always more complicated than first meets the eye.