Shooting victim’s father asks for peace
A man whose son was shot and killed wants the violence to stop, and he emphasizes the importance of forgiveness.
"I have forgiven all and anyone involved," said D.E. Booker of Charleston. "I have no anger."
His son, David Booker, 26, was found shot to death Oct. 11 in the East End.
In December, Richard B. Hilliard, 24, of Charleston, turned himself in to police in connection with that shooting. He pleaded guilty last week in Kanawha Circuit Court.
Now another man faces a felony charge in the death of David Booker.
Andre Williamson, also known as "A3" and "Andrew Miller," was shot in the leg early Saturday on Charleston's West Side in a hail of gunfire. Williamson, 25, who has a long history with police, is charged with accessory after the fact to voluntary manslaughter in Booker's death. He was in the vehicle with Hilliard on the October night that David Booker was killed.
Detectives also knew Booker well, as he had several run-ins with officers over the years and also had served some time in prison.
D.E. Booker, who identifies himself as an apostle prophet, said, "I have gifts of the spirit and have told 29 people to set their house in order. All died within six months, including my son."
He preached his son's funeral.
He has heard that shots have been fired in retaliation for his son's death. He wants the hate to stop and forgiveness to begin.
"Trying to retaliate would not be beneficial," he said. "I want the shooting to stop. I love and miss my son, but he is cut off from the living. My hope is for the living to obtain some joy in life."
He prays for those involved in his son's death as well as for anyone seeking vengeance. He wants them to have full and happy lives. He wants them to live to see their children and grandchildren grow up.
"My prayer would be that they would get their life right with God and nobody do them harm and they live their life to fulfill their destiny," he said.
He prays for their souls.
Booker said he was a police officer in the 1970s but now spends his time as an evangelist preaching at various churches.
"They call me the Jesus man," he said.
Booker, 67, said he doesn't know if his son heeded advice to turn to God, something that could have happened within the last seconds of his life.
"I have seen miracles, signs and wonders," he said. "I pray to God that whoever reads this that would have had any involvement in retaliation for my son's death leave it alone and let the law take care of it. I ask for mercy and justice for all involved."
Contact writer Charlotte Ferrell Smith at email@example.com or 304-348-1246.