"He Was Losing It." Neighbors Say OKC Man Killed In Police Shooting Had Mental Problems

Monday, April 13th 2015, 5:23 pm
By: News 9

New details were revealed surrounding Sunday night's deadly shooting involving an metro police officer and a man threatening neighbors with a machete. And police said this was not the first time they'd been called out to that home for similar threats.

At this time, police have yet to confirm if the 83-year-old victim, Richard Weaver, battled any type of mental illness. But neighbors we spoke with Monday all believed he may have been schizophrenic.

Gerald Peeler was asleep last night when cops filled his block of Sleepy Hollow Drive, a street that usually lives up to its name.

“A neighbor called me and she said 'Buddy' had been shot,” said Peeler.

Peeler spoke with Richard Weaver, a man known to his neighbors as 'Buddy,' that afternoon.

He noticed Weaver appeared to be less lucid than usual.

“He was losing it. He had mental problems from what I've noticed,” he said.

Scared neighbors called police Sunday night when Weaver began threatening them with a machete.

“They come over to my neighbor's house over here or he did, with that machete and threatened them. And they locked theirselves [sic] in the door, in the house I mean,” said Peeler.

Second year officer, Tucker Ballinger, arrived at Weaver's home finding him in the yard still waving the machete.

After ordering Weaver to drop the weapon, neighbors told investigators Weaver charged at officer Ballinger.

“She heard him to put it down three times and he wouldn't do it. He just coming at him with that machete,” said Peeler, recalling his neighbor's experiences.

“He actually came at the officer raised the machete over his head and aggressively came towards [sic] him,” said Captain Paco Balerrama with Oklahoma City police.

4/12/2015 Related Story: Police Investigate Fatal Officer-Involved Shooting In OKC

The aggressive movement forced the officer to shoot Weaver. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police said two weeks prior to Sunday night's shooting they were at Weaver's home conducting an evaluation following up to other prior calls. But at that time there was not enough evidence to have him committed.

This is the fifth officer-involved shooting since the beginning of the year in Oklahoma City.

Officer Ballinger remains on routine administrative leave.