A neighbor in Ada, Oklahoma is being dubbed a hero for fatally shooting a father, Leland Michael Foster, 27, who was trying to drown his 3-month-old twins at his home on 6th Street and Country Club Road, KFOR reports. At around 12:30 p.m. on Friday, June 2, Central Dispatch received a call from an unidentified woman screaming for help.
Dispatchers stated that they could hear a struggle, and the woman stated that a man was threatening to kill her, but before police officials arrived at the scene, a brave 12-year-old girl, who lives in the home, ran to neighbor Cash Freeman’s home for help. She told him that Foster was trying to drown the twin babies—a boy and a girl—in the bathroom, and without hesitation, Freeman armed himself with a revolver and rushed to Foster’s home.
After entering the home, he found Foster trying to drown the twins, who were born prematurely, “while keeping their mother at bay with a knife.” Freeman said he fired two shots, striking Foster in the back—killing him.
When emergency medical services arrived at the scene, they transported the twins to Mercy Hospital, and they were later transferred to an Oklahoma City hospital. An Ada Public Information Officer, Lisa Bratcher, stated that the twins are expected to be okay and were released from the hospital on Saturday.
Freeman told reporters off camera that when he went inside Foster’s home and opened fire, he stated that he “had to do what he had to do to save the children,” although he knew that he could be in trouble as a result of his actions.
A neighbor, Summer Pierce, told reporters that she doesn’t believe that Freeman should get in trouble for saving the twin babies lives. She said, “I think he did the right thing because who knows what would happen, because who knows what would have happened to the babies if he hadn’t intervened. They might not have made it.”
After the shooting in Ada, Freeman was questioned by police and released, but according to a spokesperson for the Ada police, “he will have to go before the district attorney to see if it was a justified homicide.”
Several neighbors were shocked after learning that Foster was reportedly trying to drown his twin babies. “It’s awful because I’ve held the babies and, like, I’ve played with them and I just gave them clothes yesterday,” said Pierce.
— KFOR (@kfor) June 4, 2017
According to News OK, Foster has a criminal record. In 2011, his ex-girlfriend accused him of choking her during a verbal altercation at a home they shared on 11100 Roxboro Avenue. She told police that the pair had broken up months prior to the incident, but they “remained roommates because both of their names are on the lease.”
During a heated argument, the woman stated that “Foster grabbed her from behind and began choking her.” When she told him to stop, he complied and afterward, Foster drove her to an area hospital and he went back to his home.
When the woman told medical staff what happened, Ada police officers were dispatched to the home where they found Foster burning a pile of clothes on a mattress. He had also filled up the bathtub with water and placed several electrical devices inside, according to responding officers.
Foster was arrested and charged with “domestic abuse by strangulation and arson in the first degree.” He pleaded no contest.
An autopsy and toxicology screening will be conducted on Foster’s body by the Oklahoma Office of the Chief Medical Examiner to determine if he was under the influence of drugs or alcohol while attempting to drown his twin babies.
[Featured Image by Oklahoma County Jail]