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Topic : 01/07 Omaha Mall Shooting: A Mother’s Guilt

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Created on : Tuesday, December 30, 2008, 05:12:36 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1
On December 5, 2007, Robert Hawkins walked into the Von Maur Mall in Omaha, Nebraska carrying an AK-47 rifle and 30 rounds of ammunition. The troubled 19-year-old gunned down eight people and wounded two others before taking his own life in what's been called the deadliest mall shooting in U.S. history. Robert’s mother, Molly, says she can't get over the guilt. Could this massacre have been averted? Did the grieving mom miss warning signs that would have foretold her son’s shooting spree? Dr. Phil asks the tough questions and takes a brutally candid look into this tragedy. Then, he speaks with Debora, a woman who says she took Robert in after he fell out with his parents. Find out what Debora says she witnessed just days before the teen’s murderous rampage. And, Jeff, a survivor of the Omaha mall shooting, faces off with Molly for the first time on Dr. Phil's stage. Plus, don’t miss the warning signs that your child is headed down a dangerous path. Talk about the show here.

Find out what happened on the show.

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January 7, 2009, 1:29 pm CST

01/07 Omaha Mall Shooting: A Mother’s Guilt

Quote From: missesc

 My opinion towards this entire subject, is if all you worried parents out there want to know how to prevent these terrible shootings from happening, become a solid voice together and make gun laws more intense, and for the love of your children, if you are going to own firearms, lock them up and have conversations with your kids about them.  That's one of the biggest problems with the United States, which makes me that much happier to be a Canadian: guns shouldn't be so easily owned. 

I also think that the marijuana has nothing to do with the shootings, and I feel that his mother smoking with him had only positive influence on him; it might have been a way for them to bond.  And seeing as their family is dysfunctional (like everybody's family), maybe that was a step in the right direction.  Chances are he was involved in more dangerous drugs, that I do not support, but marijuana is harmless.  Guns, however, war in other countries, that's a terrible thing for children to grow up around.

I can imagine I will be getting angry replies, and I welcome them.

A  AK-47 did not kill it was a product used to do so. The broke down mentally and phyically distrubed young man a product of those who brought him and miss treated him into this world did.

Taking our 2nd amendment away does not stop distrubed angry people from hurting or killing.

 

We seen two plans used to kill thousands and we don't stop  the planes from flying today. We have seen some nuts put things in over the counter meds to kill, but we don't stop selling med. because they where used to kill.

 

Maybe the answer is not taking the product away used to do harm, but taking away the rights of some to have children they can not protect and love and raise. The killer was not produced by Smith and Wesson but a product of bad parenting making a very angry killer

 
January 7, 2009, 1:37 pm CST

Jeff - a victim of the mall shootings is an amazing, selfless, man and should be commended.

I have been a fan of Dr.Phil's since way back to his Oprah days and I have NEVER posted a thing until today.  I was totally and completely amzed and in awe when Jeff a victim of the mall shootings decided after all to come out on stage and speak to the mother of the shooter.  This man did not come out and unleash on this woman asking her why and how she and the other woman could have failed this young man so horribly instead he came out and asked two very selfless questions.  Are the guns in that home now secured or gone? And, will you help me to get tighter gun laws?  Amazing truly amazing...

 

Dr.Phil - we all know you have a STRONG VOICE and the means to help this gentlemen in his fight please do something...

 

Maybe that will even help the people of Omaha who are upset with you for giving this killer his fame by airing this.  And let's get back to the old Dr. Phil who showed his emotion and told it how it is...  The people in this kids life should be ashamed of themselves and they should be FULL of guilt...

 

Huge fan, Candice

 
January 7, 2009, 1:55 pm CST

shame on you Dr. Phil

Shame on you for placing all the blame of this tragedy on this mother. Unless you have walked in someone shoes.....DO NOT judge them. Of course, I don't agree with all of this mother's actions, but I can tell you, I have lived with the same exact issues. I gave up custody of my three children to their horribly abusive father. Thankfully, I spent all the time I could with them, weekends, etc... despite their dad's CONSTANT HARASSING behavior, as this mom described....being accused of being neglectful, etc, He used the system to harass me for 25 years. He has taken me to court hundreds of times, Leaving me broke.
Thank God, my children came back to me before high school and are grown now, doing well.
But....there were years where I was scared to death that my son or one of his stepbrothers would shoot their father or commit suicide. It wouldn't have surprised me one bit.
These types of ABUSIVE fathers have total control over everyone involved and there is nothing you can do to stop them. Especially if they have more money and use the courts to bring mothers misery after misery. The long-term affect upon women, after this kind of abuse, should not be judged. What it dose to women, psychologically, are indescribable, let alone the children they love, and the hurt these kids feel for feeling abandoned by the one who gave birth to them.
The blame lies on this father's shoulders.....not all hers.
 
January 7, 2009, 1:58 pm CST

Mall Shootings

Some time ago, I wrote in after the V Tech shootings.  I described an incident which happened to my former boss, where a mentally ill man walked into his place of business and killed him and several other people.  The shooter and his mother have come under a barage of vile comments from our community.  I don't don't hate the shooter, and I often pray for his mom
Prior to this incident, an unbalanced man had threatened to kill all of us "snitches"at my job, after he was fired.  We worked in a mall.  Not only that, he lived in my apt. complex, and 911 happened a month or so later.  I was frantic!  It didn't seem to bother anyone else.  Yes, we have had a mall shooting in our community, and yes, our state has seen another shooting of a celebrity by someone who was considered friendly.  Perhaps I was a little more concerned than most, because my schizophrenic aunt walk the streets alone for many years,  frightened and drunk, until my dad was able to get her into a hospital, where she probably spent the most peaceful years of her life.
More recently, I became aware of a situation at the U. of Wisconsin where an ex football star has been threatening the coach, and a prominent tennis star.  I wasted no time e mailing the dean and school newspaper begging them to get with the family and do what they could to help this man.  I am sure they think I'M the nut, but I don't care.  Again, I am begging you folks:  If you have a sick friend or family member, please don't walk away.  Take the guns, knives or whatever, and try to get them help.

 
January 7, 2009, 1:59 pm CST

01/07 Omaha Mall Shooting: A Mother’s Guilt

Quote From: missesc

 My opinion towards this entire subject, is if all you worried parents out there want to know how to prevent these terrible shootings from happening, become a solid voice together and make gun laws more intense, and for the love of your children, if you are going to own firearms, lock them up and have conversations with your kids about them.  That's one of the biggest problems with the United States, which makes me that much happier to be a Canadian: guns shouldn't be so easily owned. 

I also think that the marijuana has nothing to do with the shootings, and I feel that his mother smoking with him had only positive influence on him; it might have been a way for them to bond.  And seeing as their family is dysfunctional (like everybody's family), maybe that was a step in the right direction.  Chances are he was involved in more dangerous drugs, that I do not support, but marijuana is harmless.  Guns, however, war in other countries, that's a terrible thing for children to grow up around.

I can imagine I will be getting angry replies, and I welcome them.

Well, you are certainly entitled to your own opinion.

 

However your thinking is really off-kilter when you say that smoking pot with your kid is "a way to bond".  I'm guessing you are very young and not a parent....and, if you are a parent, God help your kids!

 

The TRUE way to bond with your children is to be a strong, sober, consistent, stable, reliable, GROWN UP whom your child can respect, who leads by example, and who loves their child enough to say a firm NO when they are acting stupid! Like I said earlier: when you are a parent, YOU are all that stands between your child and disaster until their brains are mature enough to make their own decisions.

 

Also, something you obviously don't know, or refuse to acknowledge, is the fact that marijuana is the gateway to harder drugs.  So, when you say that this mother smoking pot with her kid "had only a positive influence",  it tells me that you didn't pay attention to the end result.

 

I wonder if there would have been a different outcome, and 8 lives wouldn't have been needlessly destroyed in that mall if one or both parents had had a brain in their own heads and the courage to guide their son instead of running away from their responsibilities, trying to be his buddy and smoking dope with him!

 
January 7, 2009, 2:34 pm CST

01/07 Omaha Mall Shooting: A Mother’s Guilt

I think it is easy to blame the mother but I think it is way off.  It is hard to be a single parent and when you have all the odds stacked against you that you don't know where to turn.  I have a 19 year old in jail right now for stealing.  It is not because I didn't try.  I called the police on him when he didn't come home at 12 and 14 for a week at a time - only for the juvinile authorities to put him back in the house.  What he learned was there was no punishment.  A week on his own doing what he wanted to do - then an hour spent in the police station and back home.  He would then go to school and I wouldn't know when I would see him again.  If he was home he was causing so much havic that it was miserable for his younger brothers and I.  I tried to get help from police, DFS, counselors - nothing helped.  I lost jobs because of the situation and have trouble with my younger kids to this day.  The police did nothing to my then 15 year old when he stole my vehicle out of my driveway and went to town - he was bored.  I wasted my time by calling them - he was in  and out of jail within a matter of hours.  At 17 he moved out because my rules were impossible - he had to go to school, he had to be home at  a decent hour and I would not allow him to smoke and do drugs.  The only thing he gets out of going to jail is how to become a better criminal and live his life without working and being a respectful part of society.  So don't  be so quick to think badly of the parents - unless you have resources and finances at your fingertips its not always that easy.

 
January 7, 2009, 2:48 pm CST

01/07 Omaha Mall Shooting: A Mother’s Guilt

Dr. Phil

I would like to put in my two cents on the Omaha shootings I believe there are so many problems involved here. Let’s start with the parents they need to take a good look in the mirror and ask themselves what the hell were they thinking? Never in a million years would I sit down with my child and light up a joint. I do agree that the guns should have been locked up however, guns don’t kill people it is the acts of thoughtless cowards like “Hawkins” who kill people. The reasons why he did it don’t matter the end result is that he killed 8 innocent people and he will always be a coward.

 
January 7, 2009, 2:52 pm CST

01/07 Omaha Mall Shooting: A Mother’s Guilt

Quote From: nannyr

Shame on you for placing all the blame of this tragedy on this mother. Unless you have walked in someone shoes.....DO NOT judge them. Of course, I don't agree with all of this mother's actions, but I can tell you, I have lived with the same exact issues. I gave up custody of my three children to their horribly abusive father. Thankfully, I spent all the time I could with them, weekends, etc... despite their dad's CONSTANT HARASSING behavior, as this mom described....being accused of being neglectful, etc, He used the system to harass me for 25 years. He has taken me to court hundreds of times, Leaving me broke.
Thank God, my children came back to me before high school and are grown now, doing well.
But....there were years where I was scared to death that my son or one of his stepbrothers would shoot their father or commit suicide. It wouldn't have surprised me one bit.
These types of ABUSIVE fathers have total control over everyone involved and there is nothing you can do to stop them. Especially if they have more money and use the courts to bring mothers misery after misery. The long-term affect upon women, after this kind of abuse, should not be judged. What it dose to women, psychologically, are indescribable, let alone the children they love, and the hurt these kids feel for feeling abandoned by the one who gave birth to them.
The blame lies on this father's shoulders.....not all hers.
 I agree with you wholeheartedly. I was dissappointed that he, along with so many others, tend to blame the mother. Was she perfect?  I'm sure she wasn't, but she did not pull the trigger and cause this tragedy.
The nurse, in my opinion was more accountable than the mother since she had seen the firearm the night before the senseless killing of so many innocent people. The man who kept such a dangerous weapon in a house where someone could gain access is also accountable.
I understand what you said about ex-husbands and how they can harrass and torment a women. Mine also did that to me for years and threatened to take my children away because I wouldn't allow the children to be around such a bad influence.  I had to move hundreds miles away to accomplish this, but even from a distance, I still had to endure mental duress.
 
January 7, 2009, 2:53 pm CST

I am absolutly livid

I spent this afternoon in more tears, than the mother on the show did.  I live 2 miles away from where the murderer resided.  Maybe this is all too close to home for myself.  However I could not believe that she sat that close to one of the victims and did not shed a tear for any of the lost lives that her son took.  I know most people would cringe to hear me say this however I feel pain for the murderer.  He was a lost soul looking just to be accepted and loved.  The people who were suppose to be there abandoned him.  This in my opinion is all a result of child neglect, and that in itself is one of the largest forms of abuse.  After saying that I may seem like a hypocrit, but why are we glamorizing him, he has now accomplished his goal, by becoming famous, he has not only glamorized himself but has also glamorized his failure family.  I am absolutely livid that we bother to show his face or say his name or even worse yet to show his mother's face on national television.  If I was in her shoes and I was asked to leave the stage and I was listening to what that victim was saying I would have fell to my knees in tears from the guilt of my failures as a mother.  I watch Dr. Phil all the time, and today's show it seemed as those there was a huge black cloud hanging over the stage it seemed so dim, and dull.  Like I said maybe the reason for that is because it is all to close to home for all of us who live here in Omaha.  I think we would like for our City to have been shown on national television in a more positive spot light.  So please if anyone agree's with me let's not give that family the satisfaction of granting there son's last wish by making him famous.
 
January 7, 2009, 3:10 pm CST

This story really tugged at my heart

 
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