Army Veteran Fernando Duarte Fatally Shot in Florida Casino Parking Lot, Prosecutors Drop Murder Charges Against Two Men who Proved Self Defense (2016)

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Fernando Duarte, US Army Veteran

Army veteran and former Ranger Fernando Duarte was shot and killed in a casino parking lot in Miami, Florida on Christmas day, December 25, 2016, after winning a prize. According to police, there was an argument ensued and escalated in the parking lot before Duarte was murdered by two suspects who were later identified and arrested. Kenin Bailey and Mikey Lenard were both charged with first degree murder. But the prosecutors dropped the charges against them because the evidenced revealed that Fernando was the aggressor and the two killed him in self-defense.

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In self-defense case at Miccosukee casino, slain ex-Army Ranger was the aggressor, evidence shows

US Army Veteran Robert Burgess Accused of Fatally Shooting William Smith in the Head During an Attempted Robbery (2016)

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Robert Burgess, US Army veteran

US Army veteran, Robert Burgess, is accused of fatally shooting William Charles Smith in the head during an attempted robbery. He is being held without bail for the murder.

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Veteran James Jennings Jr Casualty of ‘Suicide by Cop’ in Richland County, South Carolina (2016)

PTSD

Richland County Sheriff’s Department says a man who engaged in an hours-long standoff with law enforcement agents on August 8th was a former member of the military and suffered from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. James Jennings Jr., 69, died from multiple gunshot wounds to the upper body, one self-inflicted. Police were called to a domestic situation at Jennings’ residence. Jennings barricaded himself inside his home and police responded after he pointed a weapon at his wife and threatened to kill her. “He wanted us to kill him,” said the Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott. After he went down he was transported to the hospital where he later died from the injuries. The Sheriff’s Department said that Jennings suffered from PTSD after serving in the military and believes it played a role in his death.

“It is real, these people are suffering and they need help.” Sheriff Lott

Sheriff: Man in “suicide by cop” case was ex-military with PTSD

Marine Veteran Laura Anne Buckingham Charged with Attempted First Degree Murder in Tennessee (2016)

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Laura Anne Buckingham, USMC Veteran

Marine veteran Laura Anne Buckingham’s alleged plot to kill her ex-boyfriend (who is also the father of their child) was foiled. She has been charged with attempted first degree murder in Tennessee. She plead not guilty.

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Prosecutors Reopen Investigation into Cause of Death of Disabled Army Veteran Felicia Reeves Found Hanging in a New Jersey Motel Room (2015)

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Felicia Reeves, US Army

US Army veteran Felicia Reeves, 40, was found hanging August 19, 2015 in a bathroom in a room at the Royal Motel in Elizabeth, New Jersey. Initially the police ruled her death a suicide but the family questioned the investigator’s decision. One year later, Union County prosecutor’s reopened the probe into the investigation of Felicia to determine if in fact this was a homicide. According to her family, Felicia Reeves was a disabled veteran and had ties to organized criminal elements who might have wanted to silence her. The family also shared that she was sexually assaulted while stationed in Korea and her back was hurt during the attack which is what caused her permanent disability. She suffered from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as well. Felicia escaped a couple abusive relationships and in the past couple years became associated with people who appeared to be taking advantage of her and manipulating her. Felicia’s painkiller prescription from the Department of Veterans Affairs was a frequent target for her new found friends. Felicia was in the process of trying to get custody of her two sons and had recently become concerned that she may be in danger.

“Reeves had been in several bad relationships before her death and didn’t trust other people. Reeves’ sister, Suzan Bayorgeon, told the news outlet that Reeves had repeatedly commented that if she were discovered dead, it would be a murder.” -NJ.com

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Carlos Holcombe, US Army Veteran, Sentenced to Life in Prison for Kidnapping & Raping a 12 Year Old in El Paso, Texas (2014)

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Carlos Holcombe, US Army Veteran

Carlos Antonio Holcombe, US Army veteran, was accused of kidnapping a twelve year old child from a high school parking lot and raping her on August 22, 2014 in El Paso, Texas. He lured the little girl by asking her if she would help him move some boxes. He then pointed a gun at her back and forced her into his truck. He took her to his home, put duck tape over her eyes, bound her, and raped her. School cameras caught him in the act of the abduction and he was arrested by police the next day. He was indicted on one count of aggravated kidnapping and three counts of aggravated sexual assault of a child. According to reports, Holcombe served ten years in the US Army in support of Operation Desert Shield and was honorably discharged. He now claims he has Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) yet has not received any treatment from the Department of Veterans Affairs. He used the PTSD defense claiming that he suffers from a disassociative disorder he developed after he was sexually abused as a child. He also used the temporary insanity defense, claiming he was drinking alcohol and smoking marijuana right before the incident. A psychologist testified that he examined Holcombe by giving him several psychological exams and the results of the exams showed that Holcombe was exaggerating or lying about his symptoms. Holcombe was found guilty by a jury of three counts of aggravated sexual assault of a child, and one count each of aggravated kidnapping and indecency with a child involving sexual contact. He was sentenced to life in prison on one count of aggravated kidnapping and 20 years in prison on a charge of indecency with a child involving sexual contact. The sentences will be served concurrently.

“You don’t get to claim you have PTSD and commit a rape.” -Prosecutor Alyssa Nava

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Disabled WWII Army Veteran Richard Englander Murdered by Live-In Caregiver Sara Moore in New York 5 Days After Move In Date, Sentenced to 25 Years to Life in Prison (2014)

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Richard Englander, US Army Veteran

World War II Army veteran Richard Englander, 79, was attacked in his home by his live-in caregiver in Albany, New York on February 6, 2014. Englander served as a 1st Lieutenant with the 3rd Gun Battalion, 84th Artillery, US Army Europe and received many awards for outstanding service. As a result of his service during the war, Richard was exposed to plutonium in Germany and it left him disabled with Multiple Sclerosis. He was 100% dependent and in need of a live in caregiver. Richard placed an ad in the paper. And Sara Moore saw this job helping an elderly infirm as an opportunity because she needed a place to live. Sara Moore had never been a caregiver and Richard’s daughter was concerned and voiced those concerns but Richard decided to give her a chance. Sara moved in on February 1, 2014. It immediately became apparent to Richard that Sara was more interested in his finances then she was his welfare. Sara asked Richard if she could borrow some money on the second day of employment. Englander didn’t have any cash in the house so he gave her his credit card and she disappeared. On the third day of employment she left him alone for hours. And on the fourth day, she slept all day. As Richard was laying helpless in his bed, he realized she has got to go. On the fifth day of employment, Sara Moore stole one of Richard Englander’s checks and left the house to cash the check she wrote to herself. Sara had a secret that she didn’t share with her employer; she was addicted to crack cocaine.

Richard realized that Sara stole a check so he called the bank to initiate a stop payment and then called the police. Police report that Richard was coherent and cognizant at the time of the report. After Sara realized that the bank would not authorize her to cash Richard’s check, she became angry and went back to Englander’s home. Richard confronted Sara about the check. Sara went into Richard’s garage, grabbed a tire iron, and began viciously bashing Richard about the head while he was on the phone with the bank. The bank heard the beginning of Richard’s murder. Richard lost consciousness after the second blow. Sara hit Richard so many times that the medical examiner couldn’t determine how many times. After she got done hitting him with the tire iron, Sara used a knife and cut his esophagus. Sara then took another check and his credit cards and went back to the bank. The bank would not cash the check for Sara and called the police. First responders found Richard near death and he was transported to the hospital where he later died of the injuries. Meanwhile, Sara is using Richard’s credit cards which were on a watch list. As a result, police were able to track Sara down and arrest her. Sara was charged with second degree murder. She eventually plead guilty and was sentenced to twenty five years to life in prison. Richard was known for helping people and honorably serving his country. Sara was so desperate to get money that she preyed on a completely defenseless disabled elderly veteran.

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A secret addiction drives a young woman to sacrifice her wheelchair bound employer; a scheming caregiver betrays the man who trusts her; and a single mother’s desire for a better life leads to a brutal dismemberment. -Discovery ID

Benjamin Colton Barnes, US Army Veteran, 2012

Benjamin Colton Barnes

Benjamin Colton Barnes, US Army Veteran

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Disabled Army Veteran Justin Crowley-Smilek Shot and Killed By Farmington, Maine Police Officer in Confrontation Outside Station (2011)

Justin Crowley-Smilek

Justin Crowley-Smilek, US Army Veteran

Army veteran Justin Crowley-Smilek was shot and killed by a Farmington, Maine police officer on November 19, 2011. According to reports, it is believed that Justin went to the police station for help but would be accused of yielding a knife and chasing the officer when he was shot. Justin had deployed to Afghanistan in 2006 and returned suffering with Post Traumatic Stress. He was eventually honorably discharged from the military for PTSD. He moved back to Maine to live with his parents after his discharge from the Army. The Maine State Attorney General’s office deemed the shooting justified. In January 2013, the family pursued civil justice in the U.S. District Court against Officer Ryan Rosie and the Town of Farmington. The wrongful death lawsuit claimed their son had gone to the police station in mental distress seeking help and that Rosie used excessive force against him. They believed Rosie had insufficient training and panicked when their son confronted him. According to a notice filed with the court, the lawsuit settled in January 2016.

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Retired Marine & Police Officer Deon Cartmell Murdered Wife Shari Barbour in Nashville, Tennessee (2010)

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Shari Barbour Cartmell

Shari Barbour Cartmell was found dead in her home in Nashville, Tennessee on March 16, 2010. Her husband, Deon Cartmell, a retired Marine and police officer with the Nashville Police Department, claimed she committed suicide. According to Shari’s family and friends, they had witnessed an escalating series of domestic violence incidences over the course of their three year marriage. Deon and Shari were married in secret in 2007. Deon was described as obsessive and had angry outbursts. He was mostly upset about Shari’s spending habits. Deon attempted to isolate Shari from her family and treated her like a possession. Eventually, Shari learned that he was flirting with other women too. Police suspect that the night she died she told him she was going to leave him after learning about his “extracurricular activities” and he killed her. According to the police who responded to the scene, Leon was in a “disassociative” state when they arrived and appeared to be concerned about himself. On May 28, 2010, after a thorough investigation was completed, Deon Cartmell was charged with second degree murder. The investigation revealed that the forensic evidence at the scene did not match Deon’s version of events. In 2011, he was found guilty of second degree murder and sentenced to 18 years in prison.

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A handsome marine lands the girl of his dreams. But the perils of their long distance love push these newlyweds to the edge. When Shari and Deon’s romance misfires in a tragic accident – the collateral damage is deadly. -Discovery ID