The mother of a 24 year-old whose body was found dismembered on a Lamar County road has expressed outrage that two men accused of killing him have filed a civil lawsuit for alleged false imprisonment.
Paris, Texas (WiredPRNews.com) – A Paris mother whose son’s death in 2008 sparked major controversy in the small Texas town has expressed outrage regarding a lawsuit recently filed by two men previously accused of his murder. Grieving mother Jacqueline McClelland has been relentless in trying to find out what happened to her son, Brandon, after his body was found dismembered on a Lamar County road on September 16, 2008. The two men who were reportedly the last to be seen with the victim, Shannon Finley and Ryan Crostley, were arrested and jailed for more than six months after being charged with Brandon’s death, but released after claims were made that the driver of a gravel truck told authorities he may have hit McClelland with his vehicle. They are now seeking damages for the arrest accusing Lamar County officials and others of contributing to their alleged false imprisonment.
An affidavit filed by Lamar County District Attorney investigator Chris Brooks states that human blood was found on the truck belonging to Shannon Finley, and that it had been recently washed at the time it was located. The affidavit further states that Crostley told investigators that Finley and McClelland had argued while all three were in the truck about Finley’s driving, and Finley instructed McClelland to get out and walk despite their being miles from his residence. The estranged wife of Finely is also stated in the affidavit to assert that a friend of her husband told her that Crostley admitted Finley bumped the victim with his vehicle and drug his body under the truck for a distance after the argument.
Jim Blackwell of the Tarrant County Local Organizing Committee, who has worked with Jacqueline McClelland to find out what caused the death of her son, questions the validity of the recent lawsuit. Says Blackwell, “I’ve seen the pictures of the evidence, and I would like to ask the attorney of Crostley and Finley Michael Mosher why there is evidence of damage to their vehicle after it was found hidden in a field, and why Brandon’s body was mangled to the point where he looked like he had been dragged to death if that did not occur?”
Jacqueline McClelland has even more questions. The most pressing question of what happened to her son on that fateful night in 2008 has yet to be answered by officials in the Lamar County District Attorney’s office or anyone. She previously retained an attorney in an effort to get answers to her questions about the claims made by the gravel truck driver; who has never been charged in the case, but that effort was to no avail. McClelland has expressed fears that her own attorney, Gary Waite, who works in Lamar County, may not be acting in an ethical manner, after he has reportedly refused to give her access to evidence contained in her file. She has stated she hopes that his stalled action is not an effort to leave her without any legal recourse after the statute of limitations runs out for her to file a civil claim against those responsible.
McClelland says of a recent Paris News report about the lawsuit filed by Finley and Crostley, “I’m in disbelief, they are trying to make it seem like they were the victims.” McClelland further stated of no efforts being made by Lamar County officials to further investigate the crime, or get justice for her son, “Something isn’t right. I have to have some kind of closure on this. It seems like all three will get away with it, even if they killed my son. I need to know what is a mother to do to get justice.”
McClelland, who recently also lost her mother to a heart attack, states that she waits for some information that can give her closure and put her worried mind and heart at ease.
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