The Powers/Bedard Debacle
To the Editor:
Since December 2018, this newspaper has been reporting about the “Hatfield & McCoy” -style antics of two Waterford, Vt. men and their nephew. One of the men has been incarcerated since December for allegedly shooting at said nephew. There were no witnesses, no damage to the vehicle that was the alleged target and no one was injured. What has happened to the judicial premise “innocent until PROVEN guilty?” It would be in the public’s best interest to have this case thrown out; the sooner the better. It is a family feud - ridiculous, to be sure - but worse, it’s a complete waste of taxpayer dollars.
The accused shooter has been handling firearms, hunting and target shooting since he was tall enough to carry a rifle. He is now 57 years old. That’s a long time to become proficient at shooting. Unless his eyesight has failed dramatically, I would bet that he is still able to hit most any target at which he shoots. A car makes a mighty big target and as his brother so eloquently stated on his behalf, “Where’s your ******* bullet holes?!”
Anyone who knows this family well knows that none of the three parties involved will ever likely be nominated for “Citizen of the Year.” Each one has his own history with the courts - including the accuser. That’s a matter of public record, by the way. The C-R’s very own archives will reveal multiple tales. Bear that in mind before automatically siding with an accuser whose story has resulted in someone being jailed for months without irrefutable proof.
Our country’s court system is flooded with cases; some of which are deadly serious and deserve microscopic attention. This one? Not even close. Instead, a more practical solution would be to release the shooter; issue a court order forbidding the uncles from traveling within one-quarter mile of the nephew’s home/workplace and the nephew should receive the same order to avoid his uncles’ home territory. If family members can’t “play nice,” they should just stay the hell away from each other. Permanently.
There it is. Somebody in the family had to say it. So, as much as it pains me to admit, here’s full disclosure: Keith, Ricky and I are first double cousins; their accuser is my second cousin.