The Oak Point man accused of fatally shooting his 10-year-old daughter on Christmas Eve had been investigated repeatedly by Child Protective Services, and police believe he was probably drunk when he fired the shot, according to officials and court records.
"I could smell ... [alcohol] on him, and his actions indicated to me that he was intoxicated," said Texas Ranger Tracy Murphree, who is investigating the shooting with Oak Point police. "There's nothing right now to indicate that it was an intentional homicide, but the investigation is still ongoing."
Duke Lawrence Watrous, 36, remained jailed Tuesday on charges of manslaughter, criminal negligence and tampering with evidence. Bail was set at $200,000.
He was not charged with illegal possession of a firearm, why? Do the lax gun laws in Texas allow a man with a history of problems with the Child Protective Services to have a gun? That doesn't sound right to me. Is this part of the general attitude towards guns in the Great State of Texas?
This sad story illustrates the need for stricter standards in allowing people to own guns. Drunkenness and documented mental instability need to be screened and people like Duke Watrous need to be prohibited just like convicted felons and repeat violent offenders.
Police say Watrous was recklessly handling a revolver Thursday night at his Oak Point home when it discharged, hitting Ashley in the face and killing her.
Her 9-year-old brother and 1-year-old sister were present when the shooting occurred, authorities say.
Watrous then tampered with evidence by moving the gun from the crime scene and locking it in a gun safe, Murphree said. Police later secured a search warrant and removed guns from the home, he said.
Court records paint a disturbing picture of a family racked by conflict and allegations of abuse.
A judge limited Washburn-Rives' custody of the children after a 2003 investigation found she had abused them, CPS caseworker Hiza said in an affidavit filed Monday.
CPS investigators found that Washburn-Rives had emotionally abused Ashley and neglected Ashley and her brother, according to the affidavit.
The caseworker described Watrous and Washburn-Rives' relationship as turbulent and said each has accused the other of abusing the children.
What's your opinion? Is this just the small price we must pay in order to enjoy our god-given 2nd Amendment rights? I don't think so, but I'd like to hear what you think.
Please leave a comment.