ER - 4/28/2006 Cheri Moore's son speaks out

Cheri Moore's son speaks out
by Heather Muller, 4/28/2006

Even before the preliminary results of the investigation were announced to the public, Cheri Moore’s son said he was “basically satisfied” with the answers he had received from the Eureka Police Department.

Following a private meeting Wednesday with EPD Chief Dave Douglas, David Moore, 25, a resident of Medford, Ore., and Cheri’s only living child, told The Eureka Reporter that he believed the EPD officers “did their job to the best of their ability, given the information they had available. I believe that. I really do.”

There are still some “open questions,” David said, but he believed the major questions of the case had been put to rest.

“I still have some concerns, but I’m satisfied with the information I’ve received up to this point,” he said.

David was in Eureka for the meeting, which, he said, lasted more than two hours. He said Douglas met with him personally so that David wouldn’t hear about the results of the investigation second-hand.

“The police had to make a decision,” he said after the meeting. “They had to act on the information they’d received.”

It was what David described as a lack of information from the Humboldt County Department of Health and Human Services Mental Health Branch that concerns him the most.

“I wish more information had been released from mental health, but it wasn’t,” he said. “I wish communication could have been better between the two agencies.”

David said he had last spoken to his mother in 1999.

He described the lack of communication between mental health personnel and the EPD as “sad and disappointing.”

“There are some things I wish could change,” he said. “If the police had had better information, there’s no telling what the outcome might have been.”

In the EPD press conference Thursday, Douglas acknowledged that the role of mental health workers in this kind of situation is limited.

“They’re not field responders for this type of incident,” he said. “They don’t respond. That’s not what they do.”

Additionally, Douglas said, regulations limit the kinds of information mental health personnel can release to the police.

The EPD said in information previously released that it was prompted to perform a welfare check on Cheri Moore by a mental health employee.

Initially, the EPD reported that Cheri was described by the mental health worker as “suicidal.” Subsequently, in a prepared statement and in dispatch logs obtained from the EPD by The Eureka Reporter, Cheri was described as “threatening.”

Moore was killed by police on what would have been her son Lawrence Moore’s 27th birthday. Lawrence killed himself on March 27, 2002.

Cheri’s friend Marcus Smith said Lawrence suffered from depression and shot himself while he was off of his medication.

Smith said Cheri’s main demand during the standoff was that she receive medication she also had run out of.

Moore’s father died in his sleep of an apparent heart attack just hours after learning of Cheri’s death.

According to an obituary received from her family, Cheri is survived by two brothers, a sister, five nieces, three nephews, “and two beautiful granddaughters,” in addition to her son David.

Copyright (C) 2005, The Eureka Reporter. All rights reserved.

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