A 40-year-old Tulsa man has been arrested for deliberately killing Shawn Birdo, a 46-year-old homeless man, while he slept under a bridge in Oklahoma.
The suspect, Jeremy Thacker, whose Facebook page is a shrine to President Trump, beat a man with a pipe outside a convenient store before getting in his car and, police say, deliberately targeting homeless people with his car. Two other individuals who were sleeping under the bridge, Cynthia Wallace and James Russell, were also injured in the attack and are expected to recover.
In the weeks leading up to the attack, Thacker’s Facebook timeline was a mix of selfies, pro-Trump propaganda and memes, and rants degrading those living in poverty.
Tulsa World reports:
Thacker faces five related counts of assault with a deadly weapon for injuries to Cynthia Wallace and James Russell in the incident in which Birdo was killed, as well as for reportedly hospitalizing an unidentified woman after running over her legs outside a QuikTrip at 14th Street and Carthage Avenue on Monday evening. The second hit-and-run left another man injured with a laceration to the back of his head.
An arrest report released Tuesday afternoon states police believe Thacker went to the same QuikTrip just before 5:30 a.m. Monday, where he approached a man sleeping on a bench and hit him in the arm with a metal object similar to a pipe, leaving a cut. The report states the victim managed to fight off his attacker and yell for police but said the man fled the store in a white truck.
It would be naive to deny that these actions fit an attitude of hateful violence propagated by the Trump campaign and administration. Thacker worships Trump and he fed on the rage that president fed him. Thacker is to blame, but its long past time for Trump to take responsibility for the violent environment he has fostered.
Sheila Norton is a writer with ten years of Capitol Hill experience. Subscribe to the OD Action email to get all the hottest news delivered right to your inbox every day at www.odaction.com