A Brazos County justice of the peace is addressing comments he made about the suspected shooter in Monday's deadly drama in College Station.
In Wednesday's edition of the Bryan-College Station Eagle, Judge Mike McCleary discussed the autopsy of Thomas "Tres" Caffall, who authorities say shot and killed Constable Brian Bachmann as he delivered an eviction notice. An innocent bystander, Christopher Northcliffe, was also killed, and others were injured.
Caffall was eventually shot and killed by authorities.
In the newspaper article, the Precinct 1 justice of the peace is noted as saying he only authorized Caffall's family to pick up Tres' body. A funeral home is normally listed as being allowed to take a body as well.
“In his case, I just put ‘family,’" McCleary is quoted as saying. "I’m not going to let the county be out the expense of going and picking up his nasty-ass body. If it cost us $200 to go pick him up, I’m not going to pay for it. The family can take care of that. I have no sympathy for him or the family.”
The parents of Caffall have been quoted in multiple media outlets as saying they knew the 35-year-old had mental health issues.
When asked about his decision and his comments to the paper, McCleary told News 3 that Caffall would have had to appear before his court on the eviction notice within days of receiving it. Had he come to McCleary's court, the J.P. says he would have tried to provide financial or employment assistance, and may have even allowed Caffall to stay at the Fidelity Street home for a while longer as he worked through any issues.
McCleary said he has personaly provided his own money to some who have appeared before him who were in need because he truly believed they had fallen on hard times.
Since the mother and step-father have admitted to knowing about Caffall's health problems, McCleary told KBTX they had a moral obligation to help their son, and that the shooting Monday should have never happened, but that family, friends and colleagues have now lost loved ones as a result.
McCleary said it was Hillier Funeral Home that eventually picked up Caffall's body following the autopsy. The judge said he told Hillier staff that the county would not be responsible for that bill.
McCleary spoke over the phone and declined an on-camera interview for this story. He said he worked closely with Bachmann and described him as a good, Christian, moral man.