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‘Apparently you get away with anything if you’re scared’ ....
The Daily Mail Online ^ | February 27, 2014 | Daily Mail Reporter

Posted on 02/28/2014 9:07:46 PM PST by Uncle Chip

The family of a Georgia man who had Alzheimers and was shot dead in the middle of the night as he knocked on the door of a house, have spoken of their heartbreak that the person who carried out the shooting will not face criminal charges.

Joe Hendrix, 35, fatally shot 72-year-old Ronald Westbrook on November 27 last year.

The elderly man had slipped from his home as early as 1 a.m. and wandered in the cold and dark for hours until randomly approaching the home of Hendrix's fiancee on a rural cul-de-sac, repeatedly knocking on the door and ringing the bell.

Hendrix's fiancee called 911, while Hendrix grabbed his .40-caliber handgun, went outside and confronted Westbrook in the dark.

Hendrix told police that he fired four shots after Westbrook ignored commands to stop, identify himself and raise his hands.

Mistaken: Ret. Lt. Col. Ronald Westbrook, 72, who suffered from Alzheimer's Disease was shot in the early morning hours of November 27, 2013.

Joe Hendrix who shot him will face no criminal charges. Henderix mistook Westbrook for an intruder when Westbrook tried to enter the home of Hendrix's fiancee just before 4 a.m.

District Attorney Herbert 'Buzz' Franklin's office characterized the incident as a 'tragic shooting death' in a written statement......

'You can get away with anything if you claim you were scared,' Ms. Westbrook said refelecting on the county prosecutors' decision not to press charges against Hendrix....

'I'm a little upset,' said Deanne Westbrook, the slain man's widow. She said she felt police and prosecutors had done a thorough job. 'I really wanted to see it go before a grand jury, and then maybe before a jury. But they tell me there's not enough evidence for that.'

(Excerpt) Read more at dailymail.co.uk ...


TOPICS: Local News
KEYWORDS: joehendrix; ronaldwestbrook
Hendrix fired four shots at him in the front yard as he was walking away from the house after Westbrook ignored commands to stop, identify himself and raise his hands.

Prosecutor drops charges without taking it to the Grand Jury.

1 posted on 02/28/2014 9:07:46 PM PST by Uncle Chip
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To: Uncle Chip

This is a horror story :-(

All involved need prayers lifted up for them.


2 posted on 02/28/2014 9:11:14 PM PST by Bobalu (Happiness is a fast ISR)
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To: Uncle Chip
works for the cops...
3 posted on 02/28/2014 9:21:08 PM PST by Chode (Stand UP and Be Counted, or line up and be numbered - *DTOM* -vvv- NO Pity for the LAZY - 86-44)
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To: Uncle Chip

This is a tragedy but it also reflects poorly back on the aggrieved family who should have kept closer watch on a relative with Alzheimers.

Any family or responsible caretaker of someone stricken with Alzheimers should inform the neighborhood of the person’s condition. Had this been done it is likely the old man would have been returned safely to his bed.

I have little sympathy for those that do not take the time to at least exchange names with their neighbors. I have friends in Los Angeles who tell me they have never spoken to their neighbor in the 15 years they have resided next to each other.


4 posted on 02/28/2014 9:32:19 PM PST by Hostage (ARTICLE V)
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To: Uncle Chip

It appears you think the case was so weak you had to make up things to bolster your side for gun grabbing.

As reported in the orginal article, the situation is very different from your lie:

“As Mr Hendrix’s financee called 911 the 34-year-old confronted the stranger outside his house and, when Mr Westbrook walked towards the house without identifying himself, Mr Hendrix fired.”

Perhaps you are an MSNBC employee?


5 posted on 02/28/2014 9:34:05 PM PST by Balding_Eagle (Over production, one of the top 5 worries for the American Farmer every year.)
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To: Balding_Eagle
Apparently you can't read and if you can you are incapable or reasoning. You obviously missed this:

Ronald Westbrook rang the doorbell of a home at 4am

He rang the doorbell but was shot in the front yard.

As reported in the orginal article, the situation is very different from YOUR lie.

6 posted on 02/28/2014 10:17:01 PM PST by Uncle Chip
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To: Uncle Chip

hey if thge cops get immunity because THEY feel threatened, citizens ought to have it too.

no extra special police powers us regular serfs can’t have. it’s either we both have it oir neither do.


7 posted on 02/28/2014 10:18:05 PM PST by Secret Agent Man (Gone Galt; Not averse to Going Bronson.)
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To: Secret Agent Man

So are you condemning this man, or justifying the cops?


8 posted on 02/28/2014 10:26:45 PM PST by Irish Rose (Will work for chocolate.)
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To: Irish Rose

other way round. cops kill people all the time - and dogs fencedin back yards, one of which my city attorney uncle had, the cop was on the other sideof the fence, looked over the fence andshot my uncles dog - so why shouldn’t regular citizens have the same ability? cops kill people defending their house from being raided by cops who dont identify themselves as cops and ever get into trouble evenif its the wrong address.


9 posted on 02/28/2014 10:31:15 PM PST by Secret Agent Man (Gone Galt; Not averse to Going Bronson.)
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To: Uncle Chip

I notice you didn’t quote the article, as I did.


10 posted on 03/01/2014 7:37:13 AM PST by Balding_Eagle (Over production, one of the top 5 worries for the American Farmer every year.)
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To: Balding_Eagle

<>I notice you didn’t quote the article, as I did.<>

How much do you want to bet:

Ronald Westbrook rang the doorbell of a home at 4am

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/3096559/posts

Ronald Westbrook rang the doorbell of a home at 4am

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/3096306/posts


11 posted on 03/01/2014 11:31:46 AM PST by Uncle Chip
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To: Uncle Chip

I’ve reread the entire article, and can’t find it.

Perhaps you would quote and paste an entire paragraph, so that it can be found?


12 posted on 03/01/2014 11:42:00 AM PST by Balding_Eagle (Over production, one of the top 5 worries for the American Farmer every year.)
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To: Balding_Eagle
when Mr Westbrook walked towards the house without identifying himself, Mr Hendrix fired.

That's some nice BS additive that Hendrix worked up on the advice of counsel because his original statement was this:

he fired four shots after Westbrook ignored commands to stop, identify himself and raise his hands.

Hendrix was the aggressor doing the confronting after Westbrook rang the doorbell and began walking away.

Furthermore he shot him not because he was afraid but, by his own admission, because the guy would not follow his orders to stop, put his hands up and identify himself.

That's not self-defense nor is it SYG nor is it the purpose for having a weapon.

It's murder.

13 posted on 03/01/2014 11:51:13 AM PST by Uncle Chip
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To: Uncle Chip

No it’s a homicide.


14 posted on 03/01/2014 11:54:54 AM PST by mad_as_he$$
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To: Balding_Eagle
2nd paragraph in both previous articles:

Ronald Westbrook rang the doorbell of a home at 4am on Wednesday after wandering around in the dark for almost four hours in rural Walker County, Georgia, wearing just a light jacket and a straw hat in the cold 20 degree temperatures.

And the third paragraph in this article:

The elderly man had slipped from his home as early as 1 a.m. and wandered in the cold and dark for hours until randomly approaching the home of Hendrix's fiancee on a rural cul-de-sac, repeatedly knocking on the door and ringing the bell.

All 3 articles are perfectly clear --

15 posted on 03/01/2014 11:58:12 AM PST by Uncle Chip
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To: Uncle Chip
Furthermore he shot him not because he was afraid but, by his own admission, because the guy would not follow his orders to stop, put his hands up and identify himself.

If it's at your house, you do as you want.

Me, come to my house in the middle of the night, come towards me and refuse to identify yourself? You're going to get a chest full of buckshot.

Where I live, they won't even charge me. History has proven that last bit.

16 posted on 03/01/2014 2:59:04 PM PST by Balding_Eagle (Over production, one of the top 5 worries for the American Farmer every year.)
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To: Uncle Chip

Thanks for putting some of the key arguments for a clean shoot in bold.


17 posted on 03/01/2014 3:00:45 PM PST by Balding_Eagle (Over production, one of the top 5 worries for the American Farmer every year.)
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To: Secret Agent Man; NFHale; sickoflibs; GOPsterinMA; fieldmarshaldj

Those trigger happy dog murdering cops are quite disgusting and unfit for service.

As for this case, tragic. But I’d be loathe to charge the man with a crime.


18 posted on 03/01/2014 7:55:57 PM PST by Impy (RED=COMMUNIST, NOT REPUBLICAN)
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To: Impy; Secret Agent Man; NFHale; GOPsterinMA; fieldmarshaldj; BillyBoy
I saw this story here last year.

This seems tragic but to be honest this guy who got shot had Alzheimers which is a curse in itself.
To lose one’s mind is a terrible thing.

I now have another relative (in his upper 80s) who is crippled for five years from a stroke really bad, now diagnosed with cancer in multiple organs, that after my grandmother lived to over 100 crippled similarly.

Years earlier both told me they hoped they would die before reaching those states, and they didn't get there wish.

When they die its very conflicting, you feel relieved that the misery is over but you mourn the one you remember you had good times with years before.

19 posted on 03/01/2014 8:22:41 PM PST by sickoflibs (Obama : 'You can keep your doctor if you want. I never tell a lie ')
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To: Impy; Secret Agent Man; NFHale; sickoflibs; KC_Lion; fieldmarshaldj

“As for this case, tragic. But I’d be loathe to charge the man with a crime.”

I kinda have to agree.


20 posted on 03/02/2014 9:55:47 AM PST by GOPsterinMA (You're a very weird person, Yossarian.)
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To: sickoflibs; Impy; Secret Agent Man; GOPsterinMA; fieldmarshaldj; BillyBoy

RE Alzheimers:

It’s living hell. Imagine forgetting EVERYTHING and EVERYONE you love, all that you’ve been, all that you’ve done... and the people that love you are powerless to stop it.

Personal family experience here, as well.

I’d rather kick off younger than go through that.

Rather not delve any deeper into that subject than what I’ve already said.


21 posted on 03/02/2014 9:59:38 AM PST by NFHale (The Second Amendment - By Any Means Necessary.)
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To: NFHale

:(


22 posted on 03/02/2014 10:23:45 AM PST by GOPsterinMA (You're a very weird person, Yossarian.)
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To: GOPsterinMA; Impy; Secret Agent Man; sickoflibs; KC_Lion; fieldmarshaldj

All right....

Here’s where Hale pees in the punchbowl...

Aside from all the emotionalism and pathos in the article - and yes, it IS tragic - there’s some things that need to be dealt with.

1. The family KNEW this man had Alzheimer’s issues; it is THEIR responsibility to see that he was not a danger to himself or anyone else for that matter. I say that because my mother dealt with my Grandmother, who was CONSTANTLY trying to “go home” as she put it, trying to get out the door in the middle of the night. She picked up scissors once to MAKE my mother open the door, and only after Mom phoned a neighbor to come over was she convinced to stop. Mom put KEYED deadbolts on all the doors so she couldn’t get out. But she tried a few times. This condition lasted about a year until she passed away, at 87. Up to that point, there was NOTHING wrong with her, and then boom... her memory went.

So, to my point, Westbrook “slipped outside” - evidently a lot - because NO ONE was watching him. I blame THEM for not being responsible enough to take precautions to prevent that from happening.

2. The article says Hendrix “confronted the man outside”. I’m not clear if that means “at the front door” or he followed him outside.

IF the guy followed him outside and pumped rounds into him, he COULD be charged with second degree murder. We had an incident here in PA several years ago, where a naked drunk guy who had a habit if urinating in his yard in drunken stupor at night got confused, walked into his neighbor’s yard and, finding himself “locked out”, promptly picked up a metal yard chair and threw it through the neighbor’s sliding glass doors.

The neighbor - a combat veteran - was awakened from sound sleep at 3am by the sound of crashing glass, and a naked, bloody man in his living room. He fired three shots into the man, who turned, stumbled back outside, and was staggering away. The neighbor followed him outside and put FIVE more rounds into him to drop him.

The DA - and he’s WAS NOT a lib - said this (paraphrasing): “The first three shots were justified, as the man was in your home. As he left your home, you followed him outside, and he was no longer a threat, and you basically “executed” him.”

And that guy wound up in jail on 2nd or 3rd degree - manslaughter, I think they finally charged him with. And this is a Castle Doctrine state...!

The PA guy was awakened by shattering glass in the middle of the night, he was FREAKED, and the adrenaline kicked into high gear. Was it excessive? I don’t know - what’s “excessive” when you believe your life is in endangered? For all he knew, the guy could have had a weapon stashed outside.

So, while I’m NOT saying I agree with the Pennsy DA in that case - because I don’t - I’m saying that it COULD have gone bad for the Hendrix guy if that DA proved that he wasn’t physically endangered.

But - back to Hendrix - If Westbrook was forcing his way into the house, and Hendrix shot him, I can see that happening. It’s horrible, but understandable. BUT - if he just went outside and blasted Westbrook because he was “scared”... well, that’s pretty black and white to me.

I can just HEAR the DA saying “Then why didn’t you slam the door and stay in the house until the Police came?”

Tragedy. It happens. But realistically, the FAMILY of that poor man had a responsibility to care - PROPERLY - for their loved one and they failed, and now he’s dead. They’re angry at the man who shot him, understandable.

But Alzheimer’s is NOT something that can be taken lightly, and when you have a relative that you are charged with caring for, it is your responsibility to see that they are PROPERLY cared for and secured.


23 posted on 03/02/2014 10:57:09 AM PST by NFHale (The Second Amendment - By Any Means Necessary.)
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To: NFHale

You’re right. I hate to pile on the widow but she should first look in the mirror for people to blame, I’m sure she already has.

It like it when things are black and white. This is gray.


24 posted on 03/03/2014 11:06:46 AM PST by Impy (RED=COMMUNIST, NOT REPUBLICAN)
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To: Impy

“...pile on the widow...”

Well, it’s not so much piling on the widow - it’s just looking at facts.

When you take on the responsibility of caring for a loved one with THAT kind of progressive debilitation - and it IS a noble and honorable thing to care for your family - there are real and practical precautions you MUST take. Especially if that person has “slipped out” multiple times. Something as simple as changing locks so that they cannot be opened without a key, or making sure someone can be alert and watching round the clock, in shifts if necessary.

When people become a danger to themselves, there are hard realities that need to be faced. Assisted living facilities, home care, etc. A person with that kind of illness cannot be left alone, and if it’s your job to care for them, it’s your job to make sure they’re not able to “slip out”.

The guy doing the shooting... well, again - it’s 4am, you’re awakened by someone truing to come in the front door, you have NO clue that it’s the harmless Alzheimer’s neighbor - who, by the way, SHOULD be secured in his/her home - from down the street.

For the family to blame the Hendrix guy IS understandable - from their grief and horror. But from a legal standpoint, it’s like I said.

If he FOLLOWED the guy out the door, or shot him as he was going away, then yes, it needs to be looked at closely.

If he shot him because the guy was advancing on him and wouldn’t stop, that’s pretty cut and dried.

It’s horrible, it’s tragic, and it sucks. But it is what it is.


25 posted on 03/03/2014 11:24:07 AM PST by NFHale (The Second Amendment - By Any Means Necessary.)
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