Accused Timberview school shooter released from jail, and a correction with an apology

Timothy George Simpkins

I have a massive apology to make. In yesterday’s post, I assumed that Timothy Simpkins was the aggressor in the fight video from Timberview High School because that person had a similar hairstyle and dressed similarly to Simpkins’ booking photo, which you can see above. Multiple media outlets and the Arlington Police have said that Simpkins was the one on the receiving end of that beating. The person who was giving the beating, who was also the main shooting victim, also has dreadlocks. So, you can call me a racist if you want and accuse me of thinking all black people look the same. That’s fine as long as it means I make a fair representation of the facts in this story.

Anyway, the accused shooter, 18-year-old Timothy George Simpkins, was released from police custody yesterday. After having been charged with three counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, Simpkins was being held on $75,000 bond. Even when I was writing yesterday’s post I was wondering why the bond for the Houston shooter was set at  $5.25 million while Simpkins’ bond was so low. I realize that Dexter Harold Kelsey has been charged with aggravated assault against a public servant, rather than just aggravated assault, but is that really more than a $5 million difference in bond? Maybe someone more familiar with Texas law can enlighten me. Anyway, Simpkins has been ordered to wear an ankle monitor, not have contact with any of the victims, and not be in possession of a gun.

Simpkins’ family is still saying that he had been bullied and robbed. According to reports, the family says that they’ve been blessed with financial success and Simpkins was targeted because of that. They also said he was targeted because he had nicer things than the others. He had previously attended private school, but transferred to public school because he wanted to try something different. The family also said that while the robbery was committed away from school grounds, the school was aware of the bullying that was allegedly happening. In the family’s defense, they have said that there is no justification of anybody being hurt.

Meanwhile, the main victim of the shooting has been identified as 15-year-old Zacchaeus Selby. Selby had been shot four times. Bullets struck Selby in the arm, leg, chest, and stomach. He has undergone multiple surgeries, has to have additional surgeries and at last report is in a medically induced coma. Selby is also have said to have not only been one of Simpkins’ bullies, but one of this who robbed him as well. He could potentially face criminal charges as well.

Sometimes, there are no ‘good guys’ in a story.

Another aspect of the shooting that has drawn attention is the fact that the school did not have any metal detectors. As I have mentioned before, metal detectors are far from a perfect solution for keeping guns out of school. Many schools that did have metal detectors still have had shootings. A security expert was interviewed by the local media in Arlington, and he stated that there is too much traffic going in out of schools for the detectors to be effective. In essence, the metal detectors would have to be set up like they are in airports for them to work effectively. When you have a few thousand students, scanning them each individually is not a logistical reality. However, that being said, partial detection is better than no detection, in my opinion.

But back to the matter at hand. If that beating had taken place in the streets, there could be a case made for self-defense, even with an illegally possessed handgun. However, taking a gun into a school crosses a line. As we saw, two other people were shot who had nothing to do with the fight. Only by the grace of God, there were no fatalities. Anytime a gun is introduced to the inside of a school, it has the potential to end any number of lives.

Simpkins is looking at 20 years behind bars if convicted. If you’re thinking about taking a gun to school, even as defense, ask yourself if 20 years in prison or worse is worth it.

There’s still been no word on how the gun was obtained.

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