PAT LAMOUREUX - One episode in a person's life, does not define the person.

Friday, July 3, 2009

The Line Drawn in the Sand

The line drawn in the sand~

What does Nye County Deputy Eric Murphy say about the incident allegedly involving Joseph Patrick Lamoureux? He has gone on record as stating, “I don’t hold any ill will toward him at all.” (Pahrump Valley Times, February 27, 2009)

God Bless Deputy Murphy. I hope he understands this was a tragedy and not a crime. I hope his family also understands the trauma and pain that we have suffered.

There is a life on the line - and then there is the line in the sand.

On one side of the line drawn in the sand will be the staunch supporters of law enforcement, who believe there is no explanation for becoming involved in a confrontation with an officer.

On the other side will be those who support our troubled Veterans and want them to receive the proper care and treatment, and not incarceration.

Whichever side you currently stand on, please, step back and read this with an open mind. There is a common ground to be found.


It is important that those reading this understand that a large number of Pat's family and his closest friends are in law enforcement. He has a level of respect for law enforcement that is deeply engrained. That is what has made this situation completely shocking to all who know Pat.

Since Patrick has been detained, which will soon be 10 months, he has not received any psychological counseling.

Due to the Veterans Administration's regulations forbidding incarcerated Veterans to receive treatment, he has not been allowed to see any VA mental health providers.

During the 5 months that Pat was in a mental health facility in northern Nevada, he did not receive any psychological counseling either. While at that facility he was evaluated only for the purpose of establishing if he was competent to stand trial. He met with doctors during the time that he was there, but these were not counseling sessions. The time spent with these doctors was to gather information. It was not meant to benefit Patrick. And it didn't.

The State 0f Nevada, nor Nye County Nevada has made any effort to provide psychological counseling for Pat. They have failed in their responsibilities as much as the VA did.

So what we have is a Veteran, Pat, who was clearly very troubled. The VA failed to provide proper treatment and intervention for this deserving Veteran. Pat comes to the end of his rope, and erupts in a way that is totally out of his normal character.

A situation explodes and two individuals with the common goal, to serve and protect are injured. The officer involved is hailed as a hero - and rightfully so, after all, he was injured in the line of duty.

Patrick, who signed a blank check to the United States of America for the amount of up to and including his life, is painted in the media as a horrible villain.

A man with a clean record prior to this incident is treated and spoken about as if he were a career criminal.

And suddenly he is the center of a media heyday. People want to be quoted and express their opinions, when they don’t even know or understand that there is another side to the story.

Pat, rated by the VA at a high level of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, is incarcerated. Given that incarceration causes PTSD, it would seem that someone, somewhere, who has a responsibility to take care of him, would immediately have made certain that this troubled Veteran received counseling once he was detained.

But in almost 10 months, that has not happened.

He sits confined in an environment which ultimately will cause an escalation of his well documented PTSD. And no one is talking to him to aid him in working through the scars that he carries from the war. Then of course, there is the trauma of that fateful morning of September 19, 2008.

Can you imagine the level of torture Pat is experiencing?

I have been told that "sometime" in July, he will be allowed to see a doctor. I hope this doctor will be a psychologist/psychiatrist. This appointment will be here in the tiny town of Pahrump, Nevada. Do I have concerns about this civilian provider's qualifications to evaluate and treat a Veteran with Combat related Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder? Certainly, I do!

I want nothing but the best for my husband, because that is what he deserves. That is the caliber of person that he is.

But, this is how we treat our Veterans. When they come home from the war broken, the system that was formed to help them, fails them. They get in trouble, we lock them up and essentially throw the key away.

After all, they are really of no use to us anymore, and -wow! Are they a burden on the already overwhelmed VA system.

~~~~~This is the line in the sand~~~~~~

My hope is that instead of a line in the sand, that the two sides can reach a common ground. I pray that those on the side of law enforcement understand that this was not a crime, but a tragedy. I pray that those who support our Veterans will stand firm on saving Pat's life.

If you knew him, you would call him a great guy, the best neighbor you could ever have. You might even call him "The Boy Scout" and "Mr. Fix-It". That is the type of person that he is. He is an incredibly wonderful man. If he weren't he wouldn't be my husband. I will stand by him and fight for his life, because he is worth fighting to save.

Pat is currently 'serving time', and by the time his case actually goes to trial, he will have been incarcerated for almost a year and a half.

Justice will not be served by sending him to prison for any time.

Every day of his incarceration that has passed since this horrible tragedy, has already been a lifetime to him.

Give him probation, and not prison.

The right thing needs to happen. Good common sense must prevail. Let's all rally to save Patrick's life.

It can happen if the two sides stand on the line in the sand.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

The Price Of Freedom

The cost of legal representation in the State of Nevada is mind boggling. When this incident occurred, I knew that it was impossible for me to find an attorney to represent Pat. When I attempted to find an attorney, the costs were staggering:

$10,000 - retainer fee (least expensive)
$20,000 - cost to prepare for trial (least expensive)
$40,000 - $100,000 - cost for trial representation (least expensive)

That being said, Pat has a Public Defender, i.e. court appointed attorney.

His attorney is currently working to build the best team of expert witnesses that he can to provide the best defense for Patrick. As a Public Defender, he has a limited budget for Pat’s defense. In order to present the best possible defense for Patrick and secure the expert witnesses necessary to defend Pat, it is going to require money that is not in his budget. I cannot cover this expense, and Patrick’s immediate family cannot either.

This is where all of you can help.

As a unit of family and friends, if everyone digs in and contributes, we can raise enough money to allow these experts to become part of Patrick’s legal team.

I know that the economy is bad. I know that many of us are living on fixed and/or limited incomes. But, if everyone makes an effort, we can all contribute to saving Patrick’s life. It does not have to be a large lump sum donation, work it into your budget and send money weekly or monthly. However it works for your budget. Don’t stop at Starbucks or that fast food restaurant. Eat at home instead of going to dinner. Order a movie or rent a DVD instead of going to the theater. Please, help save Pat's life.

A PayPal account has been set up in order for people to make contributions to Pat’s legal defense. As I know that some people do not trust the Internet, checks – made out to “Defense Fund” - can be sent to Chris or to me. Our addresses are:

Chris Lamoureux
2 N. Village Ct.
Alpine, UT 84004


Sue Lamoureux
P. O. Box 4172
Pahrump, NV 89041

We must all remember that Patrick made sacrifices for us when he served our country. We must find the way to repay the price he has paid for his service. Please, help save the life of this worthy Veteran.

The price of freedom - priceless.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009


In the United States of America, apathy could be one of the biggest downfalls of our country.

Unfortunately, as Americans, as long as something does not reach out and touch us square in the middle of our foreheads, we don't care. If it does not have a personal impact, Americans tend to go about their personal lives with little thought about how the person next to them is doing. As long as our lives are okay - life is good. As Americans, we have lost the ability to look out and/or care, for one another.

Americans listen to the news and remark "Oh that is terrible news to hear". Sometimes they listen to the news and say "What a shame", "How sad". And then one day a story appears on the news - and that story is about their life. It is about a horrible tragedy that happened to someone that they love.

As someone involved in such a news story - let me explain the emotions that you go through.

You are already in a state of shock over the incident that occurred. Then you are sitting in front of your TV and you are hearing "your life" broadcast all over the city in which you live. You see it in print in the newspaper. You see it on the internet. And you see people jumping in a making their comments and passing their judgements.

It is worth mentioning that frequently the information broadcast in the media is totally inaccurate.

For instance - "As for the suspect, sources close to the investigation say he has a substantial criminal history." (Channel 8 News, Las Vegas, Nevada, September 19, 2003 - 3:10 PDT)

People that you know, your neighbors, people that you work with or did work with - they all are hearing this. As if the situation weren't bad enough to begin with - now your image is beyond tarnished.

Unfortunately, once that broadcast is done, not every person who heard it will hear any additional "corrections" that may be forthcoming.

In Pat's case, a retraction was never done by Channel 8 in Las Vegas. And that statement was totally false.

There were many other inaccuracies broadcast by the media. None of them ever corrected.

But - people don't care. They hear a story, and they take that story and embellish it with their own "knowledge" and what they think. Soon the whole situation does not even have a close resemblance to what happened, and the actual facts leading up to what happened are lost in the gossip, and the damage is done.

As Americans, not only are we guilty of apathy, we are guilty of passing judgement before we actually know what happened.

There are people's lives that are being destroyed with misinformation that is being broadcast, and nobody cares - until it is their own life.

Joseph Patrick Lamoureux's life began a downward spiral after he returned from Iraq. He did the right thing and sought treatment. He knew he had a problem. He wanted to get better and get his life back. Unfortunately, the VA failed him, and at a time when intervention could have occurred, he was told to go home and take his medication.

Apathy - the VA providers don't even care. Their schedules are overburdened. Just write a prescription and send the patient out the door. Don't take the time to treat the patient, after all - there is another patient waiting in the lobby.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The criminal, guilty by association, what we take for granted, and the fear

In the past (almost) ten months, Patrick and I have experienced things that good people should never have to go through. Especially Pat.

The Criminal
Over the past ten months Patrick has been treated like a common criminal. He has been shackled. He has been placed in solitary confinement four times. None of them for disciplinary reasons, that was just the only way that he could be “accommodated”. (Really?)

He has gone through “shake downs” and had things taken away from him. Even things that he was forced to purchase through the detention center’s commissary. Three of the most recent items were a paper chain necklace that had a paper cross on it,an eraser,and a styptic pencil. For some reason those were suddenly contraband. The styptic pencil he had since October. The eraser he bought at the commissary. The paper chain with cross was made for him by another detainee. “They” can take whatever “they” want whenever “they” want to, and there does not have to be an explanation as to why.

To see him in shackles – devastating. That’s the only way I can describe it.

He has not seen daylight in months. He used to have such a beautiful natural-looking light tan. He is so pale now.

I think of the horrors that he experienced in Iraq, and the struggles that he has had since he came home. And then there is the last ten months of his life. How could something so horrible, happen to such a good person?

Guilty by association
Since this happened, I have been followed by the local authorities. It appears they are certain I must going to do something wrong, and they are just waiting. I have gone through countless searches when going to see Pat. On one visit while he was up north, I was forced to take my wedding rings off.

I cried, but I took them off.

Starting July 2, two things will happen. I will now have to go through a metal detector, and I will have to make an appointment to see my husband. There are only two days a week I can see him. If I can’t get one of the 15 minute visit times in a two hour period, I won’t get to see Pat.

I feel like I did something wrong and I am being punished too. All I did was love my husband, I still do, and I always will.

What we take for granted
We take everything for granted. Being able to have chapstick. Lotion. Watching a movie. Eating popcorn. Listening to our favorite music. Talking to people when we want to or need to. Being able to go outside and feel the sun, see the moon or the stars. Being able to get in a car and go to Wal-Mart for something we want/need. Watching what we want to watch on TV. Sleeping when we want to, waking up when we want to, and deciding what we would like to eat, when we want to eat it.

It is the Veteran who has given us those freedoms. Patrick, the Veteran, has lost all of those freedoms.

The fear
There are many fears in this situation. However, on Saturday during my visit with him he told me, “If I get out of this without getting Hepatitis or HIV it will be a miracle.”

When he said that, I couldn’t breathe, I was overcome by fear for him.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

PTSD – Memories frozen in the mind – My Own Story of PTSD

Unless you live with someone who has combat PTSD, you cannot imagine how it is to go to sleep one night with someone you love – and wake up the next day and wonder where that person is.

Fragments of horrific experiences are captured in the “brain’s eye”. A place is found in the brain to store those pictures - they are frozen in time. On any given day, those frozen memories can begin to thaw, sometimes in an instant. The pictures come to life again – the horror of what happened is once again very real, and it is happening all over again.

After the early morning hours of September 19, 2008, I understand how those frozen images can thaw in an instant.

I cannot hear a helicopter without seeing vivid images in my mind of the darkness of that night - images of law enforcement cars speeding to the scene….again, in my mind I hear gunfire………….

The dead silence that followed – and once again, I can feel the fear that death could be near me.

I see the flashing lights, an ambulance – a road blocked and flashing lights, I hear the flight for life helicopter coming in – people all around, chaos.

Again, I remember waiting for what seemed like a lifetime before knowing if my husband was alive, or dead.

In a matter of minutes those horrific images were frozen in my mind. And something as simple as a helicopter unleashes these memories in my mind.

Can you imagine what living in a combat situation 24 hours a day for days at a time could do to the mind?

I can’t.

Please, help me save my husband’s life. The only way this can happen is by making certain he has the best defense possible to achieve the best outcome possible. Help me get him the care he needs that the VA failed to give him.

Please - help save Patrick’s life.

"Grandpa Pat & Kain"

"Grandpa Pat & Kain"
"Kain-man" the jokester....

Pat Lamoureux - Iraq 2003

Pat Lamoureux - Iraq 2003
"Pat is an extraordinary, thoughtful, kind and generous man...not to mention a wonderful friend, in which one could always count upon to be there when in need." (words of a long time friend)

Pat's Family

Pat's Family
Mica & Heather, grandson Kain