Parents Who Don’t Defend Murderous Offspring

15 Dec

During my research into why parents will vigorously maintain a son’s or daughter’s innocence in the face of overwhelming and compelling evidence of murder, I ran across this interesting case and, although it hasn’t gone to trial yet, I think it has promise:

Anthony Scott

Anthony Scott, 19, was charged in October 2008 with first-degree murder of his estranged girlfriend’s mother, attempted first-degree murder of her father, burglary with a firearm, unlawful possession of a firearm and felony harassment (domestic violence).  Court documents and friends of the family say Anthony Scott was upset that the Tubbs’ daughter, Cassandra, had broken up with him and that he’d been asked to move out of the Tubbs’ home. Friends of the family also said Anthony Scott sent his ex-girlfriend a taunting message after the shooting, according to what family members told them.

Scott’s mother said her son has had problems with fights in the past — but only when provoked. And, she said his long-time mental problems and lack of medication likely contributed to the shooting. Scott told police he “blacked out” and remembers nothing about the shooting, according to court documents.  “He always had a violent past but he only gets violent when he’s provoked,” his mother said, adding past problems were physical fights that never included weapons. “He never did stuff like that just out spite. It was always somebody provoking him or picking on him. … His mind isn’t like ours. He sees monsters and creatures coming after him.”

Her son was still in one his “zones” that he gets when upset and so far was still “babbling”, his mother said in a telephone interview. She spoke to him shortly before the shooting and knew he was upset, but she had no idea how he got a gun or what caused him to seek one out.  She was trying to move her son back to Arizona to help him get his life back on track and was gathering belongings to pack at the time of the shooting, she said. She also said that Scott didn’t graduate high school, having been kicked out for behavior problems in the 11th grade while in Arizona.

His step-father, a cab driver, said he offered to get his eldest son a job and a car in Arizona, but he was young and wanted to stay with his girlfriend.  “I told him he was getting old enough to get his life together, but when you’re 18 or 19 you think you have the world by the tail,” he said.  He said he’s saddened for the Tubbs family loss, “I’m very sorry for the family members who have been lost and injured, but it’s not just the (victim’s) family that’s hurting,” he said, adding Anthony’s two brothers and two half-brothers are reeling from the news. “I feel like I betrayed my son or let him down in some way. I didn’t teach him something.” He hasn’t spoken to his son yet, but did send money for a telephone card. He also hopes to travel to [Seattle, WA area] for subsequent court hearings.  “He’s going to have to pay for what he’s done,” he said. “But no matter what he’s done I’ll always love him. He’ll always be my son.”

Now, that is a breath of fresh air.  Parents who are not (so far at least) trying to wiggle their son out of the trouble he has called upon himself.  Unconditional love tempered with reality. I don’t think you failed your son at all, Mr. Scott.


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