'Please, God, don't let them kill me in front of my kids'
By Ray Lane & KOMO Staff
The widow of the man who was killed in a home invasion robbery in Edgewood spoke out about the horrible attack and said her husband was a hero for protecting them.
Story Published: May 4, 2010 at 11:12 PM PDT
Story Updated: May 5, 2010 at 6:32 AM PDT
Jim and Charlene Saunders
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Three charged in deadly Craigslist robbery
PUYALLUP, Wash. -- Family and friends of the victim who was killed in a home invasion robbery expressed relief Tuesday that three of four suspects have been captured.
Sheriff spokesman Ed Troyer said two of the suspects were captured in California over the weekend, and a third surrendered to police on Tuesday.
Jim Sanders was shot to death at his home after letting in a group of people who said they were considering purchasing a diamond ring Sanders had listed on the Craigslist website.
Tuesday, Sanders' widow called her husband a hero for protecting them.
"And I had a gun to the back of my head, with a countdown... three, two... and I was screaming and my kids were standing there," said Charlene Sanders. "I said, 'Please, God, don't let them kill me in front of my kids, don't let them kill me in front of my kids."
After that night of horror, Charlene Sanders says she's blessed that she and her two sons are still alive. She says her husband Jim was killed defending his family in their home.
"They took the love of my life, my future," Charlene Sanders said. "They ripped my home apart."
But with the capture of three of the suspects, she says there's a new layer of comfort. She's deeply religious, and so was her husband.
Now, in the wake of unimaginable tragedy, she relies on her faith more than ever.
"If I want to be forgiven, I have to forgive," she said. "That's a tough one. But that's where I have to look to, eternity."
In addition to stealing that diamond ring they saw in the Craigslist ad and ransacking the home, the robbers also yanked Charlene Sanders' wedding ring off her finger as they kicked her in the head.
She hopes, somehow, to get it back.
For Jim Sanders' parents, heartbreak that will always be there. They've lost their oldest son, and they brace for what could be a lengthy and agonizing legal process.
"It's a relief that you know they've been caught," said Linda Sanders, Jim's mother. "But once you've lost a son in such a terrible way, there's nothing that can ever, that can fill that void. You just want to touch him, hold him, talk to him one more time, but you can't do that."
His father added, "you love your family, you can lose them in an instant. Take them and hold them; appreciate every moment you have with them."
Charlene hopes something good will happen in the wake of her family's turmoil.
"I have to believe I can turn this into victory," she said. "And if people can come to Christ from this, it was worth it. It was worth my husband's sacrifice."
The family says each of the suspects should be punished with plenty of prison time, but in the meantime, as they wait for the fourth and final arrest, they will prepare for a funeral this weekend.
Washington, DC --(AmmoLand.com)- Despite their patriotic-sounding name—the “Denying Firearms and Explosives to Dangerous Terrorists Act of 2009”—H.R. 2159 by Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) and S. 1317 by Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.) aren’t intended to contribute to the war on terrorism.
Instead, they’re intended to give the executive branch of the federal government the arbitrary power to stop loyal Americans from exercising their constitutionally-protected right to keep and bear arms.
The true purpose of the bills comes as no surprise, since King, Lautenberg and co-sponsors Reps. Carolyn McCarthy (D-N.Y.), Mike Castle (R-Del.), Jim Moran (D-Va.), Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.), Mark Kirk (D-Ill.) and Chris Smith (R-N.J.), and Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), Carl Levin (D-Mich.) and Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) are longtime supporters of gun control.
Senator Frank Lautenberg (NJ-D) (Anti-Gun)
H.R. 2159 and S. 1317 would give an attorney general “the authority to deny the sale, delivery, or transfer of a firearm or the issuance of a firearms or explosives license or permit to dangerous terrorists. . . . if the Attorney General determines that the transferee is known (or appropriately suspected) to be or have been engaged in conduct constituting, in preparation for, in aid of, or related to terrorism, or providing material support thereof, and the Attorney General has a reasonable belief that the prospective transferee may use a firearm in connection with terrorism.”
However, the bills would not impose requirements or limits on the kind of information an attorney general could use to make such a determination, nor establish a standard for “appropriate suspicion.” They instead propose that “any information which the Attorney General relied on for this determination may be withheld from the applicant if the Attorney General determines that disclosure of the information would likely compromise national security.”
The scheme that the bills propose is unprecedented. Since 1968, federal law has established guidelines for all categories of persons prohibited from receiving and possessing firearms, and since 1994 has expressly protected a prohibited person’s right to be told why he is prohibited. The bills would establish no such standards, would provide no such protection, and would allow an attorney general to deny gun purchases based upon secret information, or upon no information whatsoever.
H.R. 2159’s and S. 1317’s potential for abuse is obvious. A 2009 Department of Justice report1 states that the FBI’s terrorist watchlist doesn’t include certain known terrorists, yet includes people who are not terrorists, the latter an on-going problem widely reported upon by the media and the A.C.L.U.2 Even the late Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.), perhaps the most widely recognized member of Congress since the watchlist was created, was on the list. And, the bills follow a disturbing Department of Homeland Security report characterizing gun owners and military veterans as “rightwing extremists,”3 and Attorney General Eric Holder’s endorsement of new gun control restrictions.
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