A Nebraska bar owner has committed suicide after being indicted for killing a BLM rioter who tackled him in the street. Videos of the incident are below. Originally, the county DA refused to bring charges against the bar owner, Jake Gardner, saying he acted in self-defense. Under pressure, the DA appointed special prosecutor Frederick D. Franklin to lead a grand jury review of the killing. Records show that Franklin donated to Barack Obama’s campaign for president in 2008. Gardner was a former Marine who served two tours in Iraq and suffered two traumatic brain injuries during his time there.
The Daily Wire is reporting:
“An Omaha bar owner, who was a two-tour veteran and had been cleared by Douglas County District Attorney Don Kleine of charges after fatally shooting a rioter outside of his bar in May, was found dead by suicide on Sunday night, less than a week after a grand jury indicted him.
Jake Gardner, 38, who shot 22-year-old James Scurlock after he was apparently protesting the death of George Floyd outside his bar, acted in self-defense, according to Kleine.
However, following unrest largely because of the races of Scurlock, who is black, and Gardner, who is white, the DA appointed special prosecutor Fred Franklin and a grand jury, hoping “it would restore public faith in the justice system,” NPR reported.
His life didn't matter.
Jake Gardner killed protester while defending his bar during BLM riots.
D.A. & police find shooting was in self-defense.
Under pressure, D.A. appoints black prosecutor to indict Gardner.
Gardner's GoFundMe page taken down.
Gardner commits suicide.
— Ann Coulter (@AnnCoulter) September 20, 2020
Franklin, who said he initially thought Gardner acted in self-defense, agreed with the grand jury and announced Wednesday that the bar owner was indicted on charges of manslaughter, attempted first-degree assault, terroristic threats, and use of a firearm in connection with a felony.
Less than a week later, on Sunday night, it was confirmed that Gardner had committed suicide.
IN-DEPTH VIDEO OF THE ATTACK & SHOOTING:
Gardner’s attorneys, Stu Dornan and Tom Monaghan, according to the Omaha World-Herald, said their client’s suicide stemmed from “a cocktail of behavioral health problems stemming from head trauma he experienced during military service, the belief that people were out to kill him, and an ‘incessant rush to judgment’ by social media jockeys.”
They also disclosed that Gardner was receiving “death threats.”
“Bottom line, Dornan and Monaghan said, Gardner had lost his bars (a landlord ended his lease after the shooting), his home, his livelihood,” the report said. “And he was about to lose his freedom. Add in behavioral health concerns, Dornan said, and suicide was not a surprise, even though his attorneys fully expected him to turn himself in Sunday night.”
The Omaha World Herald reported on what took place that night:
“One of the videos showed Gardner emerge from his bar after his windows had shattered and confront a group of people. Gardner’s father twice shoved a man — and then was himself shoved to the ground. Scurlock was neither the person shoved twice nor the person who shoved Gardner’s father.
[A video on YouTube purports to show Scurlock breaking into an Omaha business during the riots & damaging property but it cannot be confirmed that it is him]
Scurlock was walking toward Gardner and pushed a man next to Gardner. Gardner backed up as Scurlock and a couple of other people walked toward him. Gardner then lifted his shirt to show a handgun in his waistband. Two people charged Gardner, knocking him into a puddle in the street.
Lying on his back, Gardner fired what he told police were two warning shots to get the people off him. They scattered. Four seconds passed. Scurlock jumped on Gardner’s back as he was trying to get up.
The two struggled on the ground for about 20 seconds with Gardner yelling, “Get off me” repeatedly. He switched the gun from his right hand to his left and fired over his shoulder, hitting Scurlock in the neck and killing him.
Kleine has questioned why Gardner didn’t just stay behind his bouncer after the windows of his bar were broken out. But based on the video of the struggle, he said, he determined that Gardner fired in self-defense.”
Here’s a video of Jake Gardner in 2017 at Trump’s inauguration.
Gardner’s family spoke out after his death. KETV reported:
“Jake Gardner’s family broke their silence one day after his body was found outside a medical clinic in Hillsboro, Oregon.
“We made sure he knew that we stand behind him and that we know you are not a racist. We know you are a good person,” said a cousin.
Three cousins asked KETV Newswatch 7 to disguise their identities for fear of retribution, after seeing attacks on their family on Gardner on social media.
“People are rejoicing and carrying on and celebrating because another life was lost,” said another cousin. “The community should be ashamed of itself for how this was handled. They deemed him guilty from day one.”
Twenty-four hours after finding out their cousin died by suicide in Oregon, they want the community to understand the man they knew and loved.
They said Gardner, 38, expressed remorse after fatally shooting James Scurlock, 22, outside Gardner’s Old Market bar during the unrest.
“We know you did not kill for a bar. You looked in your mother’s eyes and told her, ‘I’m sorry mom. It was my life or his. I didn’t mean to destroy our life,'” the cousin said.
Gardner’s lawyers say the veteran Marine, who served two tours of duty in the Middle East, suffered from PTSD.
They said the night of unrest triggered trauma from the Iraq war.
“At what point does someone get over being in a war. There was tear gas, people shouting and then people attack him,” said a third cousin.
Gardner, himself, shared his feelings with KETV Newswatch 7 while waiting for the grand jury decision.
“I’m more anxious now than when I was flying to Iraq,” Gardner said.
He added he was in Iraq before and during 9/11. Gardner said he was also in Haiti in 2004 to break up civil unrest.
“Our family was proud of him for serving our country,” the cousins said.
Referring to surveillance video from May 30, the night of the incident, one cousin said,
“You can look into his eyes in that video and you can see that fear. I look at that video when I see his eyes and I cry. To see the fear that man was looking at, I know Jake. I looked in those eyes, thousands of times, he was terrified,” she said.
“We would like to grieve in peace with all the hate,” she said. Another cousin said,
“But we can’t because everyone is so happy that he’s gone.”
The Gardner family said they also pray for the Scurlock family and that two families lost two sons in this tragedy.”
Jeff Rainforth is a freelance photographer & news editor covering events on the US/Mexico border, and riots & unrest in Democrat-run cities.
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