I’ve been crying these past few days.
Not just for my town. Or for Demetrius, Russ, and Danny. Although I do mourn over these things. But I keep thinking about Tj. He was a good kid. His grandparents are good wonderful people, who love him and tried to give him a better life here. I keep thinking about what’s going to happen to him. I don’t want him to be tried as an adult. I don’t want him to be facing the death sentence, or life in prison ( in essence, they’re both the same). To be honest. I want him to get 5-8 years in a juvenile detention center. I want him to see a good therapist. To get help. I want Tj to live, to go to college. To become a better father to a son, than his own abusive father was. I’m not trying to downplay the severity of the situation. I was there. I was scared. But isn’t the loss of three lives bad enough? Do we really need to take away a fourth life from someone who was so distraught afterwards that he turned himself into a stranger by repeatedly saying “I’ve done something bad.”
Tj was a good person. He is kind, and gentle. Quiet, but he has a troubled past with an abusive father. He didn’t know how to handle his emotions.
I keep crying thinking about his punishment. I’ve poured over all the school shooter cases where the shooter has lived. They always get a life sentence. I pray that this time is different.
I forgive you Tj. You’re still a Hilltopper.