The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

His Daughter’s Ex-Boyfriend

Posted on | March 16, 2014 | 48 Comments

Or, How to Get Shot Dead in Texas:

The Houston father who police say fatally shot a 17-year-old boy who was inside his daughter’s bedroom early Thursday morning will likely not be charged, an area prosecutor told MyFoxHouston.com.
Although a grand jury will review the case, prosecutor Warren Diepraam said it is unlikely that the father will be charged.
“What was going on in the person’s mind at the time of the shooting, [not] what they found out after the fact” is key, Diepraam said. “They’re looking at what he was thinking when he made the decision to shoot.”
The investigation into the shooting is ongoing, and a grand jury will ultimately decide if charges are appropriate. But so far it appears the father, who was only identified as a 55-year-old in reports, was awaken[ed] by one of his other children at about 2:20 a.m. He was told someone was in his 16-year-old daughter’s bedroom and he grabbed his gun.

(As any father in Texas would do, naturally.)

He reportedly found the teen in bed with his daughter and confronted him. His daughter apparently told him she did not know the boy.
The father said he told the teen not to move, but reportedly saw the teen reach for something, at which point police say the father opened fire. The teen did not have a gun. His daughter later confessed that she snuck her boyfriend, 17, into the house, the report said.

Everywhere across America, the parents of teenage girls are saying to each other, “Honey, we ought to move to Texas.”

 

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Comments

  • MichaelAdams

    Most of the local news reports I have heard said he was under the bed, not in it. That makes the story somewhat less atavistic, although, probably, even if he was in, not under, it would be the rare grand jury that would indict, especially if the grand jury included a substantial number of parents of teen age daughters.

  • MichaelAdams

    Why is under less atavistic? Shooting a burglar

    is more within normal limits than shooting a poor candidate for marriage. (Yeah, I’d probably do both, although the women in my family have ways of making such extreme prejudice unnecessary. No blood, but lot of tears, from HIM.)

  • robertstacymccain

    This is one of those cases where an old-fashioned judge would find the father guilty of “discharging a firearm within the city limits” and fine him $1.

  • Zohydro

    This father made a mistake and he should pay for it! One should never pull the trigger unless the threat is unequivocal… The policemen who shot a kid with walking home with an airsoft rifle or an old man reaching for his cane… These are tragic but still unforgiveable errors. I’m am reminded of the case of Yoshihiro Hattori whose trigger-happy killer walked…

  • maniakmedic

    What bothers me about stuff like this is that the reaction has changed from one of disappointment and disapproval of the stupid teen decisions to “well, teens will be teens, and if you think they will abstain from sex you live in a fantasy world, so you might as well give them the condoms.” Have teens always been boneheads? Yes. But. The funny thing about people, no matter their age, is that if you place expectations on them and teach them how to live up to those expectations, they will generally do their best to live up to them. I know this. I live in a culture steeped in the apparently old-fashioned idea that sex should only take place within a marriage. Some kids slipped up, but the majority of us have lived up to the expectation that we would live by a moral standard we were taught to abide by.

    But the world doesn’t want you to believe that’s possible so we are drowning in endless studies about how teen brains aren’t fully developed so we shouldn’t expect much out of them. This attitude does them a greater disservice than it does us as adults. It teaches them that they are not accountable for their mistakes and that they have no control over themselves. That they can never be better than their base instincts, so why try? And how dare you point out they made a mistake; that’s mean! (Even though there is a vast difference between allowing someone to learn from and take ownership of their mistakes and shoving those mistakes in their face.)

    It is a sad time we live in when people will actively try to make other people feel bad about living up to a moral standard – and then try to get those people to abandon their morals – but will lionize people who don’t live by any moral standard.

  • joethefatman

    I hope I find a judge like that if’n I need him, since I’ve got 3 girls and 2 are under 18 and still at home. But they and their friends know I’m very well armed.

  • RS

    Everyone is focusing on the father’s actions, but a more pertinent question concerns the daughter’s liability. Her actions in the face of a situation where she should know her father is prepared to use force to defend her are despicable. She bears responsibility for this young man’s death, first by “sneaking” him into her bedroom without her parents’ knowledge and then lying about him when discovered. Sadly, this sort of thing is typical on college campuses where “morning after regrets” become the causative factor in ruining young men’s lives. This Texas story is another, albeit extreme, example of the same damn thing.

  • Groty1

    No father is going to make his daughter re-live the memory of watching him shoot her boyfriend dead UNLESS the father believed he and his daughter were in grave mortal danger. Both the father and the daughter will have to re-live that tragic memory every day for the rest of their lives.

    It seems to me the father tried to prevent this very scenario from occurring when he asked the daughter about the boy. When she denied knowing him, the only rational conclusion he could make in the heat of the moment is that the boy was uninvited and was violating his daughter. When the boy made some move or gesture toward the father that was misinterpreted as aggression, the father defended himself and his daughter against who he believed was an unwelcome intruder violating his 16 year old daughter. Don’t forget that one of the father’s other children believed the boy was uninvited since the kid was the one who woke the father to protect her (and presumably the rest of the family).

    Now, we’re only going on a reporter’s summary interpretation of the facts. But based on what we know the father’s actions in this horrible tragedy appear to be justified. At least based on my own common sense values, morals and ethics.

  • Ben Franklin

    This may not be a criminal matter but it will certainly result in a civil suit. The question will be how much blame to apportion to the father, daughter and boyfriend. The father being the only adult with any money means that he will bear the brunt because he is the only one who can really be punished.

  • tlk244182

    Murdered him with her father’s unwitting help. There was a Law and Order episode with a similar plot. But the idea that the kid would move after being told not to (under these circumstances) is suspicious. I would have remained scrupulously motionless. I’d also love to question the kid who woke up the father. Were the lover’s making noise? I would never have run risks the way we’re told this young fool did. So far, it sounds more like murder to me.

  • maniakmedic

    *cue whiny liberal voice* But it’s not her fault! She was just doing what every teen does and her father should have just gotten with the times and known that no teen in this day and age has the ability to control themselves when it comes to sex!

    *normal, sane person voice* She was doing what has, I suspect, always worked for her: trying to shift blame for her actions onto somebody else. She was literally caught *in the act* and instead of owning up to it like a moral person, she panicked and did the first thing she thought of (which to me comes across as her default) and said, in essence, “I didn’t do it!” People used to grow out of this as young children because, in saner times, they learned that doesn’t work. Does her father bear some blame for this mindset? Hard to say, not knowing what the household rules and discipline were like. But you can bet this sort of behavior and blame shifting were never discouraged in her school and social life outside of home.

    I realize that to most people I come across as cold and, well, bitchy when it comes to teenage stupidity. To me, hormones and brain structure fluctuations are excuses people give teens for acting like morons. Teens are not completely stupid. Even they respond to rewards and punishments. If they are treated like adults (within reason), they will pretty much behave like adults. That means punishing them when they do wrong and rewarding them when they do right.

    The girl is well past the age to have gained the knowledge of what is right and what is wrong. As evidenced by the fact she felt she had to lie about what she was doing. She is ultimately responsible for this tragedy. And so is the boy, victim or not. They knew they were in the wrong (as evidenced by their sneaking around) and they went ahead anyway. And let’s not pretend the girl didn’t know her father would react to strange noises in the house with a gun. Even my sisters knew better than to try to sneak into our house if they were late.

  • http://www.journal14.com/ Dana

    In Texas, the age of consent is 17, which made the deceased household intruder an adult as far as copulation is concerned, while the daughter, if sexual intercourse occurred, is a rape victim; the father simply shot a rapist.

    (Except, unfortunately, the daughter could legally consent since she was less than three years younger than her assailant, but I like the way I described it in the first paragraph better.)

  • http://www.journal14.com/ Dana

    It seems to me that her was some joint — possibly pun intended? — stupidity going on here. That teenagers sometimes copulate is unsurprising, but that they both chose to sneak into her parents’ house and her bedroom as a great location for carnal activities is surprising, and surprisingly dumb.

  • http://www.journal14.com/ Dana

    There’s an obvious, but thus far unmentioned problem: how is it that a 16 year old girl had a boyfriend with whom she was close enough that they were engaging in fornication, in her bedroom, yet he was a complete stranger to her parents?

  • http://www.journal14.com/ Dana

    tlk wrote:

    But the idea that the kid would move after being told not to (under these circumstances) is suspicious.

    Why? He already proved that he was just plain stupid for thinking it was a good idea to fornicate with his girlfriend in her parents’ home, with her parents home.

  • http://www.journal14.com/ Dana

    One would hope not, because that might render him legally ineligible to own a firearm in the future.

  • http://boogieforward.us/ K-Bob

    I wonder why, just like we saw with the Zimmerman case, so many people think they already know enough to play judge and jury on this thing.

    If the case as presented is remotely accurate, my sympathies are with the Father. But None of us were there.

    Me, I like to wait for Professor Jacobson’s analysis after the verdict.

  • rustypaladin

    I am not familiar with the case with the cane but, as an avid airsoft player, I can tell you that I do not blame the police at all for shooting the kid with the airsoft rifle. Airfoft guns are very realistic looking and I can easily see how the police would asume the weapon was real and respond accordingly. The kid should have dropped the toy as soon as the police confronted him. The police cannot read minds and therefor have to respond to what they see and hear.

  • Quartermaster

    Such a suit is not likely to go far in Texas.

  • http://www.leftbankofthecharles.com/ Charles

    Good that this is going to the grand jury. If the Trayvon Martin case had been allowed to go to the grand jury, it would have spared the country a lot of trouble.

  • Zohydro

    I denounce you…

  • Zohydro

    Maybe they were just snuggling…

  • http://www.journal14.com/ Dana

    Again?

  • http://www.journal14.com/ Dana

    Maybe a federal charge, for violating the young man’s right to copulate with his daughter?

  • Zohydro

    You were begging for it…

  • http://www.journal14.com/ Dana

    Well, of course you’re right, and I denounce myself for assuming that fornication was their intent!

  • ErikasPowerMinute

    Are you freaking serious? The daughter told her father she didn’t know the person in her bed. As far as the father knew, it was a psycho rapist intruder who had a knife to her throat. Any normal person who finds a stranger in bed with their child in the middle of the night is QUITE RIGHTLY going to shoot first and ask questions later.

  • Zohydro

    The old man is going to be OK and the officer appears sincerely remorseful… Still, he’s “trigger happy” and should consider another line of work!

    http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/deputy-weeps-shooting-70-year-old-traffic-stop-thought-cane-gun-video-article-1.1721404

  • Zohydro

    If this guy walks, we’re going to get more (unconstitutional) “legislation” like the “Brady Bill”…

  • MichaelAdams

    I certainly do not excuse teen misbehavior. Rather, I believe that the latest understanding of brain development is enough evidence that teenagers do not get to make decisions about reproductive behavior. I am also well aware that this is really, truly reproductive behavior, unless there is some medical intervention to render it unproductive. Most of those interventions are either illegal, immoral or fattening, and definitely unhealthy. It seems strange to me that the boy was not aware that he was entering the Fort Knox of nookie, without even a flak vest. Darwin award.

  • Sue

    In one of the early local news reports, they said the father uses a wheelchair and that when the brother said there was someone in the girl’s room, the father “crawled” to the room. It also said the father called 911, but the young man argued and seemed to be reaching for something to throw at the father. The shooting happened before the police could respond. If true, that would seem to support the dynamics of self-defense.

  • MichaelAdams

    There was no mention of the father being wealthy. It is likely enough that his only asset is the equity in his house, and no judge in Texas can touch that, because our homestead law is written into the Constitution, since 1837.

  • Quartermaster

    Don’t forget denial of due process and, consequently, of his civil rights. It’s a two-fer and must not be separated.

  • Quartermaster

    And, if yer gonna mess with the Patriarchy, you’d better at least be wearing a flak vest.

  • Quartermaster

    Cops have played the “shoot-no shoot” game for years. I’ve seen one that was making the rounds of the National Park Service back in the 70s when a friend was a Ranger at Shiloh. No matter how the game is played, it comes down to trying to read the mind of the prospective perp. I did well in Engineering School, but I utterly flunked mind reading.

    I can understand why the kid would not have dropped the airsoft fake as well. Once more, it’s a matter of the cop not being a mind reader and the kid knowing that what he is carrying isn’t real. What happened to the kid is just as unforgivable because someone died. But what do you do after the kid’s life has been terminated? I don’t know the circumstances, so I’m not going to judge.

  • Ben Franklin

    That is interesting information about the homestead law. I just assumed civil suits were the usual course and didn’t mean to imply the guy was rich… just that he is the only one likely to be working. You can still get a judgment against someone with few assets. Getting it paid is another thing.

  • http://thecampofthesaints.org Bob Belvedere

    Damn well put.

  • http://thecampofthesaints.org Bob Belvedere

    When I was young, I was as stupid as this guy and have the scar from exiting the second floor window and then sliding off a roof, but if the gal’s old man had pulled a gun, I would have frozen in place like an ice dam.

    [I was cheeky enough back then to run around to the front door and ring the bell like I had just arrived.]

  • cmdr358

    Ridiculous.
    Unless the young man was gay, colored or a member of some other Obama administration approved list of preferred minorities he had no such right. (sarcasm off)

  • MichaelAdams

    It’s possible to sue, of course, but lawyers do not like to sue when there is nothing to stea- I mean, to be awarded,

  • cmdr358

    Except…..
    No where is it reported that the daughter screamed for help or showed any other signs that she was being sexually assaulted.

    The house was quiet enough that her brother had to go awaken the father. He did not yell or scream for his father, he went to wake him up.

    At this time there appears to be zero evidence for the father to believe that the young man had broken in and was raping his daughter.

    Personally, I’m of the opinion that the father was so enraged at finding his daughter in bed with this guy and his adreniline was pumping because he went into the room assuming the worst that he jumped when the guy didn’t freeze as commanded to.

    Dad screwed the pooch big time. Enough to be prosecuted? Maybe, maybe not. In any case, it’s a mistake and a tragedy, but no more the young man’s fault than the daughter. Perhaps she should be prosecuted for contributory negligence resulting in the death of another?

    Unfortunatley, as in the Zimmerman case, it’s going to come down to whether or not there’s enough public outrage to prompt a prosecution. Public outrage should have have absolutely zero influence in a case but we all know that it does.

  • http://www.journal14.com/ Dana

    Actually, while I haven’t seen a photo of the victim, the father is black.

  • cmdr358

    In that case- nolle prose.

    Right or wrong its owed because…RACISM.

  • Jason Lee

    “they are not accountable for their mistakes and that they have no control over themselves.”

    …except to avoid chewing a pop tart into the shape of a gun or wearing a patriotic shirt to school. Then, of course, they’re expected to understand the nuances of judgement and self-restraint.

  • SPQR9

    Your comment is bizarre. Either you are utterly ignorant of the law of self defense or another of the gun control activist extremists.

  • SPQR9

    So you claim that there is zero evidence for one theory …. and then fantasize based on your own evidence-free speculations.

    Bizarre.

  • daisy

    You could fill a whole grave yard with tom cats who got caught going in or out a bedrooms that didn’t belong to him.

  • ErikasPowerMinute

    Utter nonsense. There is no situation this side of LaLa Land wherein a normal father would come across a person who had broken into his house in the middle of the night and gotten into bed with his daughter who would think, “I’m sure there is a perfectly innocent explanation!” Why don’t you run that one by Polly Klaas’ father and see what he says.