Friday, June 02, 2017


Willie Godbolt said he was going to his house to talk about the custody of his children. In the best of circumstances, this would be a charged situation. Maybe it should be held on some sort of neutral ground where emotions might not be unfairly skewed one way or another. Maybe some sort of family mediator should be on hand to make sure that discussions remain on a positive level, not sinking to acrimony and name calling. 
Or murder.
Because that is what happened outside Jackson, Mississippi over the weekend. Mister Godbolt was having that conversation previously mentioned when things took a turn and somebody decided to call the police. In Godbolt's words, "It cost him his life. I'm sorry." 
When it was all over, Sheriff's Deputy William Durr was dead, along with seven others. Willie traveled around the county, looking for folks to shoot. Victims from the first home were the mother, aunt and sister of Godbolt's estranged wife. She escaped the scene with the couple's two children. That would be the good news. In two more locations, he shot and killed two teenage boys at one and his wife's sister and brother-in-law the other. It was a busy and deadly night for Willie Godbolt. 
When the gunfire was over and the smoke cleared, eight people were dead. Media reports suggested that it was Willie's intent to have law enforcement shoot him to bring the total to nine, but he was only wounded and is expected to survive. To stand trial. And be a candidate for death row. And years later, this horrible mess will all have some resolution. 
Speaking of courts, let's return for a moment to that initial suggestion of a neutral site for discussions of child custody. I'm going to suggest a courthouse. With metal detectors and security. Not that anything awful has to happen at such discussions, but more like a contingency plan in case tempers run hot. Maybe step outside the room and get a drink of water. Let cooler heads prevail. Don't let anyone have a chance to reload. 
The custody case, it would seem, has now been settled. At least one of Willie Godbolt's objectives was achieved. 

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