Florida Man Allegedly Had Guns, Demons, And A Lot Of Crazy

If someone ever published The Adventures of Florida Man, there’s probably nothing they could come up with in fiction that someone either hasn’t done or won’t do. Especially in Florida, apparently.

Yet there are times when you see a story and you think you’ve seen it all, that Florida Man can no longer surprise you.

Then you read this one:

A former deputy with the Orange County Sheriff’s Office in Florida is facing child abuse charges after he allegedly conducted an exorcism on a child. Police said that Christopher Dougherty, 37, told the children there were demons in their home and gave one girl a rifle and instructed her to shoot anybody who entered.

When police arrived, they found the girl holding the rifle in a shooting position while wearing body armor and a kevlar helmet. The boy was armed with a taser, and Dougherty was in possession of a handgun.

The girl told officers that Dougherty woke them up and said that there were demons in the house. He told them that “they needed to burn things that were possessed.” She said that they went to a nearby parking lot to burn various items. After that was done, Dougherty performed an exorcism on her brother.

Dougherty was a sheriff’s deputy but was fired for a non-related reasons.

However, let’s take a look at this case for a moment. Dougherty apparently served in law enforcement for at least some period of time. This despite having what sure looks like some profound mental illness issues.

And yet, anti-gunners want us to give up our guns and allow the police to handle all the problems.

Uh…no.

See, police are people. Just like the general population, you have a large portion who are good people, a smaller portion who are bad people, and another portion who are just plain crazy.

Further, law enforcement is better equipped to screen for that last group along the way than the population as a whole. The fact that Dougherty didn’t trip those particular alarm bells despite what sure as hell looks like being bat-guano crazy shows just how difficult it can be for society to detect all the damaged people in our midst.

Because of that, you almost have to expect those damaged people to act out in various ways. No, you don’t have to approve and there’s nothing wrong with trying to find better ways to detect those damaged people, but you don’t treat the whole world as damaged just because of those small handfuls of people. You help the damaged and allow the rest to go on with their lives.

Honestly, people who think they’re performing exorcisms after burning some of their possessions–possessedions?–are probably pretty damaged and probably need help. Since ages for the children weren’t mentioned, I can’t say if handing them a firearm is child endangerment or not (though I lean toward it not being as a general thing, especially if the child has been taught how to handle a gun), but this is a prime example of how law enforcement isn’t immune to any of the problems that we have as a society.