VIDEO: I-10 shooting suspect's dad defends son

Posted at 10:30 PM, Sep 19, 2015
and last updated 2015-09-20 01:30:02-04

The father of I-10 shooting suspect Les Merritt Junior is providing more insight into his son’s arrest and trying to advocate for his son’s innocence.

FULL COVERAGE: Get all the details on Valley freeway shootings here

Les Merritt Senior says because of the arrest, his son's Facebook videos showing him shooting targets and firing a weapon with his young son are being taken out of context.


“Like many Americans he enjoys his right to own guns,” Merritt Sr. said. “My son, you can see in one video, is teaching his son at an early age the respect and proper handling of a firearm to eliminate the curiosity."

Les Jr. also shared news links to articles about the I-10 shootings on his Facebook which some have speculated could be perceived as a way to brag about the crimes.

Merritt Sr. is very candid in his explanation. "Has anybody, any one of you, commented to your friends or family out of concern on Facebook about the I-10 shooting? Does that make you the shooter?"

He says Les Junior did pawn a gun for extra cash to support his family and he theorizes paperwork easily could've gotten mixed up. He fears Les Junior is a scapegoat.

"DPS is being pressured, so they're grasping at whatever straws they can to make headline snatching announcements."

Above all, Merritt Sr. remains adamant, his son is a loving, hardworking, dedicated family man who is innocent.


"If my son did this, he deserves to be punished.  I do not believe he did it. And I will defend his right to innocent until my last breath," said Merritt Sr.