Tucson Shooting Victim Arrested For Threats, Gets Psych Treatment
January 16, 2011
(ChattahBox Political News)—This is very sad and disturbing. Tucson rampage shooting victim Eric Fuller, 63, has been making the media rounds lashing out at the inflammatory rhetoric used by the likes of Sarah Palin with her “crosshairs” map targeting Rep. Gabby Giffords (D-AZ), Glenn Beck and Sharron “Second Amendment remedies” Angle. His anger, although understandable, came off as inflammatory and over the top. During a televised Tucson town hall moderated by ABC News’ Christiane Amanpour, Fuller lost control of his anger when Tucson tea party leader Trent Humphries brushed off talk of gun control. Fuller said to Humphries, “You’re dead.” Fuller was arrested and involuntarily committed for a mental health evaluation.
A naval air veteran, Fuller perhaps is suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome from the trauma of the massacre that left six dead, including a nine-year old girl and 13 wounded, leaving Giffords fighting for her life with a head wound. Fuller was shot in the knee and his back.
Leading up to the town hall event, an agitated Fuller blamed Sarah Palin and others for the shooting.
“How many more demented people are out there? It looks like Palin, Beck, Sharron Angle and the rest got their first target,” Fuller, a former campaigner for Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.), told Democracy Now.
“Their wish for Second Amendment activism has been fulfilled — senseless hatred leading to murder, lunatic-fringe anarchism, subscribed to by John Boehner, mainstream rebels with vengeance for all, even nine-year-old girls,” he added, reading from comments he said he had written down while being treated for his wounds.
Meanwhile, teapartier Trent Humphries was contributing to the heated dialogue in the wake of the shooting, by vowing not to change the tea party’s rhetoric and casting the tea party as another victim of the Tucson massacre.
In an interview with the Guardian, Humphries even blamed Congresswoman Giffords for the shooting because she didn’t have security at the congressional meet and greet in front of a Safeway supermarket.
“The real case is that she [Giffords] had no security whatsoever at this event. So if she lived under a constant fear of being targeted, if she lived under this constant fear of this rhetoric and hatred that was seething, why would she attend an event in full view of the public with no security whatsoever?” said Humphries.
Amid this escalating rhetoric, Fuller arrived at the town hall and crossed the line from outrage to making actual threats.
“That’s where the atmosphere turned tense. When Tucson Tea Party founder Trent Humphries rose to suggest that any conversation about gun control should be put off until after the funerals for all the victims, witnesses say Fuller became agitated. Two told KGUN9 News that finally, Fuller took a picture of Humphries, and said, “You’re dead.”‘
“When State Rep. Terri Proud (R-Tucson) rose to explain and clarify current and proposed gun legislation in the state, several people groaned or booed her. One of those booing, according to several witnesses, was Fuller. Witnesses sitting near Fuller told KGUN9 News that Fuller was making them feel very uncomfortable.”
As Fuller was led away by police officers, he reportedly shouted out, “You’re all whores!”
Fuller was charged with intimidation, making a threat and is expected to also be charged with disorderly conduct. He was later involuntarily committed for evaluation to a mental health facility.
Fuller needs to heal, both physically and emotionally. And cooler heads need to prevail in the wake of the Tucson shooting, as we move forward with a much-needed national conversation on civility in our political discourse.
Photo Source: KGUN9-TV video capture