The man who killed his family says he ‘felt like an animal’ during a gunfight with a stranger
Posted On May 18, 2021
A man who used a gun to kill his family during a robbery in Florida said he “felt like a animal” during the encounter and that he shot himself in the leg to avoid death.
The attack took place in March in Lake Worth, Florida.
The gunman said he needed a gun and shot himself as the family and two young children ran out of the home.
“It was a crazy, crazy, wild day,” said Charles Hester, who told WFTV-TV that he and his wife, Karen, were out shopping in a grocery store with their children, ages 8 and 11.
“I just had to take a life and not take it,” he said.
He said he thought his family would be able to get away.
He told the station that the suspect tried to grab his wife by the neck.
“She was screaming, and then he pulled his hand out and grabbed my wrist,” Hester said.
“And I thought, ‘Oh my god, he’s going to shoot me.'”
Hester was shot once in the hip, according to ABC News.
“The last thing I remember is hearing a gunshot and seeing him fall on the floor,” Hesters wife said.
Hester told the news station that his wife ran outside and he yelled at her to get back inside.
Hesters daughter, who was home at the time, heard Hester yell, “Oh my God, it’s a guy,” and ran into the house, Hester’s wife said, according with WFtv.
The children’s mother, who identified herself as Karen Hester Hester Sr., said she did not know her husband.
“They’re my two little girls,” she said.
Karen Hesters father told the Florida Today News newspaper that the family is not seeking any compensation.
“My family and I are extremely thankful for all the love and support that has come our way over the last two days,” he told the newspaper.
“We want justice, and we want the man who took our lives to be held accountable.”
A man was arrested in connection with the shooting, which occurred about a mile from the home, ABC News reports.
The suspect, identified as James Henry, told authorities he was a member of a street gang called the N.A.P.C. and the group’s members were threatening people.
The N.O.P., which has been blamed for the killings of several members of the family, was also involved in the shooting of another man who was injured by the suspect.
Hildreth and Hester had lived together in a trailer park in Lake Charles, Louisiana, about 25 miles north of Lake Worth.
They lived with their two children and their mother in the same trailer park.
Hiles wife told the Associated Press that she feared for her life.
She said she heard gunfire and ran outside to look for her husband when she was attacked.
“He was just screaming, ‘Get the f—er away from me,'” Hildrith told the AP.
“But he was dead.”
A witness who was in the trailer park at the same time as the shooting told WAFB-TV in Lakeland, Florida, that he saw a man who appeared to be holding a gun in his hand and a woman yelling at him.
“A guy was holding a handgun and he was trying to scare her off,” the man said.