If We Had Only Seen The Signs



In less than a year the citizens of Payson have experienced the deaths of two innocent people by guns: a cold blooded shooting of an unarmed man suffering from pancreatic cancer and the accidental death of an 18-month-old shot by his 3-year-old brother.

When such things happen, there is a wringing of hands and the cry, “If we had only seen the signs.” From the articles I have read in the Roundup, there were plenty of signs in both cases before someone died.

The person who killed his neighbor because the deceased’s dog was running loose, had a long history of being mentally unstable; threatening a person walking a dog in Green Valley Park, another similar incident in the state where he came from, and then even bringing a toy gun to a town council meeting ... heck I could read this guy’s signs before he pulled the trigger on his unarmed neighbor.

Next we lost an 18-month-old because of a loaded gun, one of eight or nine guns in the house, left loaded by an old man who also had a history of intimidating his neighbors, including shooting his neighbor’s cat with a BB gun, then shoving the woman when she confronted him.

Signs? Why did this old dude still have all those guns when he was apparently not in control of his faculties?

We throw money at our police department for any kind of program that comes along. Maybe we should spend some of these dollars training an officer or two on how to spot the “signs” and then go the extra step and act on these signs.

Our justice personnel should get on board too. The man who shot his unarmed neighbor last year has not been to trial after many months, and is under house arrest for God’s sake, but still he drives the streets intimidating others. If he loses it again and shoots another citizen or an officer who comes by to check on him, you know what will be said? “We should have seen the signs.”

Ted Paulk


Pat Randall 2 years, 7 months ago

Why hasn't Mr. Voden gone to trial if you all are so sure he is guilty. The law must not think they have a good case to convict him. I know a few people that should be locked up when they act peculiar but it isn't a crime. If someone was charging at me in my doorway and I had a gun I would do the same as Mr. Voden did. As far as the elderly man having several guns, I don't think that is against any law unless you are a convicted felon. Some people like guns and collect them. My husband did. Blame the mother for not watching her kids. According to the paper she was at the man's apt. because he was giving her food. As for the police, if they had seen any signs, whatever you mean by that, what could they have done? I see people every time I go shopping I think should be locked away but they haven't broken the law so they run free.


Donald Cline 2 years, 7 months ago

Unfortunately, Mr. Paulk is of that liberal persuasion that believes all social risks can be ameliorated if we just tattle on one another and lock anyone up who diverges the slightest amount from the current perception of social norms as established by the Realpolitik agency of almighty, all-powerful government.


Donald Cline 2 years, 7 months ago

Ted, were you there when Voden shot his neighbor, or the three-year-old shot his brother? Were you a witness to the crime, if it was a crime and not self-defense in one case or a childish misadventure in the other? Have you sat in on law enforcement interrogation of witnesses and subjects of interest relating to either of these unbelievably tragic events? Are you admitted to the Bar and properly credentialed to review evidence searching for probable cause of wrongdoing or evidence of culpability sufficient to sustain a True Bill from a Grand Jury?

Or do you just figure anyone who exhibits what you consider to be risky behavior should be locked up on speculation? Or have their property stolen by the almighty State on the grounds that they might cause injury or death?

I dunno, Ted. Looks to me like the former is the kind of thing a know-it-all fool would shoot his mouth off about without having a clue as to what really happened, and the latter is the kind of thing a petty little dictator would do to his helpless subjects in the guise of safety. So, Ted, are you channeling some ignorant high-school sophomore, or some monster like Josef Stalin, Adolph Hitler, or Benito Mussolini?

For what it is worth, Ted, I know a lot more about at least one of those cases than you do, and they were tragic beyond belief. Yet, turning our society into a kindergarten class with everyone running to the teacher righteously tattling "Tommy is acting funny!" doesn't seem to enhance personal responsibility, does it?


Pat Randall 2 years, 7 months ago

Thanks Donald Cline There is someone out there with a brain.


don evans 2 years, 7 months ago

The new PC wave of the left is to push the "mentally unstable" accusation. It's best for the village to have old John Doe carted off to the Looney bin. Do I think Voden had/ has issues, for sure. But whose responsibility is it to point the finger and have him examined on the REMOTE chance he could be held for a 48hr mental evaluation or legally held longer. Most eval's result in nothing further than an on call State Psych Doctor doing a 20 minute interview to determine if one is a danger to self or others, or caring for themselves. If the determination is that the individual does not rise to the level of mental instability and danger opinion, old John Doe gets transported right back to where he was picked up most likely by the local law enforcement agency. Who just spent the last four hours transporting, waiting, then returning the individual back all for what? If they aren't foaming at the mouth and running around shooting or stabbing someone, good luck in getting them detained in a mental facility for the 48 hour evaluation hold. Most violent mental situations occur because they refuse/stop taking their psych meds. There are many nut jobs out on the streets because nobody wants to certify them unstable and dangerous for liability claim reasons. Even MD's. Great system from our Government. And the left wants to use the mentally unstable accusation as a political weapon against those with whom they judge an ideological enemy. Wait, I know, maybe the VA will do a quick commitment if the waiting list isn't to long.


Ted Paulk 2 years, 7 months ago

No surprise from the same tired old men who dispute everything I say...by the way Donnie, I keep telling you I was once a cop and probably know a bit more about law enforcement than your old teabagging butt!!


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