Statement from Denise Pruett - WSMV Channel 4

Statement from Denise Pruett

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Denise Pruett with her son Vincente Montano. (Source: Family photo) Denise Pruett with her son Vincente Montano. (Source: Family photo)

Denise Pruett, mother of Vincente Montano, declined to be interviewed on camera. She did provide this written statement to the Channel 4 I-Team.

"Vince was an honor student all through school. He graduated Wheaton Warrenville high school early with a 4.14 grade point average. He excelled at everything he did. He was on the cross country track team, he received trophies and awards for every sport he joined. Vince was president of the National Art Honor Society. He was funny and kind and wanted to be a graphic artist. He loved traveling and cared deeply for his friends and family. He received numerous awards. One time he was receiving an award for an art show he entered at the high school, he wore his black suit and tie, he walked up to the podium talking to everyone on both sides of the aisle, making them laugh putting them at ease. He arrived at the podium and gave his speech and gave accolades to all art honor society members. He was confident and assured. After high school he went to a year of college at MTSU.

"Vince got sick at 17. When Vince got sick it was like someone flipped a switch, the doctors in Tennessee were wonderful. Dr. Anderson treated him at Parthenon Pavilion. The only thing I would have changed if I knew then what I know now is I would have allowed Vince to be deemed incompetent when the State of Tennessee wanted to during his first hospitalization. Dr. Anderson said you do not want to enable him. I thought he would get better. The medicine cost around $2,500.00 a month. I had insurance that picked up most of the cost. I still had to pay like $250.00 a month. The medicine was called atypicals.

"Vince stated while he was on the medicine he could not remember what he read or recall what was said in classes. He completely lost all his childhood memories. One day he sat on his bed and he had his pictures he kept looking at them over and over trying to remember that life he once lived. It was the saddest thing. One night at like 2 a.m. he came into my room and woke me up, he said he figured out the ying and yang in his brain was off. He was having a lucid moment. Then he would stop taking his meds and then I would have to wait until he was out of his mind before I could get him hospitalized again so he would start his medicine again. When the illness took over one Sunday afternoon he was sitting at the computer and his eyes started rolling back in his head and his hand was on the mouse. He created a picture of a unicorn horn piercing a heart.

"I would put him in the hospital. Then they would let him come home then it would happen all over. In 2009 he was in Rockford Memorial for four months, then Dr. DeSouza called me in and said that Vince fired him. The doctor allowed a person who was non-compliant and not in control of his faculties to fire him and another doctor took over. He wanted to send Vince home. He never even read Vince’s chart. Vince was non-compliant refusing to take the meds. I told the doctors that Vince was not well enough to go home and he had full coverage insurance and his bill was being paid. I told them if he was released and hurt someone I would sue their ass.

"They removed my name from the authorized person on his HIPPA form. They told my paranoid schizophrenic son that I wanted to keep him in the hospital. They called his aunt, she went and picked him up. She took responsibility for him which included finding him a room to rent in someone’s house and when the people kicked him out because he was not normal and quit taking his medicine the aunt washed her hands of Vince she stated he quit taking his medicine. Vince stayed at the Rockford rescue mission and then some lady donated a bus ticket to Florida. So off he went to Florida. I submitted the first missing persons in 2009 to the Rockford Police Department. Report number 09129624 SGT Bruno. The Rockford Police Department lost Vince’s dental records.

"The Florida cops found him on a highway on a bridge in Florida they asked him questions and let him go. Vince contacted me and I paid for an apartment for him in Florida and the paranoia set in. He said the neighbors would knock on the door and tell him to come out so they could beat him up. I told him ‘Vince the voices in your head are not real.’ I ordered Schwan’s to deliver food to his apartment. I ordered soap and toilet paper from P&G every day and had it delivered to his address. I transferred to Florida to look for him after he left that apartment and traveled to Biloxi, Mississippi, I told him ‘Vince you are not going to like Biloxi,’ then he went to Alabama then Texas.

"I transferred to my current job location because my main office is based in Houston and I knew I would go to Houston periodically so I could look for him. I would get up at 3 a.m. then go to homeless shelters and camps calling the police in Houston. One cop in Houston, Lenise Robertson, told me he is an adult. Another one, Ranger Ellison, told me maybe he doesn't want to talk to you. Ranger Ellison took a DNA sample because they found a dead body and I wanted to rule out it was Vince. Officer Rodney Bergeron from the Irving Police Department was actually helpful.

"When you have a baby and the baby gets sick you give them medicine. If that baby grows and gets sick you still give them medicine. If they are unable to take care of themselves as the parent you will care for them and make sure they have their medicine. Vince was my son who I dearly loved. When he was well I laughed with him when he was sick I cared for him. That was my job as his parent. You don’t stop being a parent just because someone turns 18.

"The police released my information to the press and I was notified of the fact my son was in the theater by one of your reporters, not by the police. The only reason the police would do that is because they wanted me down at the scene.

"Vince was shot inside the movie theater by Officer Frith. Let me refer to him as Barney Fife. It should have been obvious to him when the air passed his cheek inside the movie theater that my son did not have a real gun. (If that is what really happened) Officer Frith ran out of the theater after that happened like a coward instead of stopping to assess the situation. So you have someone with a gun supposedly and other theaters with people in them but you decide to run like a scared rabbit instead of realizing that the person inside the theater has a toy firearm and you could probably take him in hand-to-hand combat, instead jeopardizing all the other theater goers. He stated he decided to let SWAT handle it. So my son exits the theater holding his side and everything he owned in the world, the bullet from the rifle entered his side pierced his kidney then entered his lung. Once outside Barney Fife’s band of idiots open fire and use my son as target practice hitting him 23 more times. All the bullets entered through his back as he was fleeing. He did not engage the police or face them. He turns with his back to the door, according to the Louisville news, as if he is trying to leave. Then five officers shoot him 23 more times in the ankles, in the knees, in the elbows - every place they could to inflict the most pain to send a message to all other crazies out there not to mess with Nashville. Then while my son was bleeding to death and his lungs were filling up with blood, he was cold due to the blood draining out of his body through the bullet holes while the police were kicking him behind his ear in his thighs and legs and sides. That is according to the autopsy report multiple contusions and scratches. Then one of my son’s bags has a cellphone with a circuit board and two wires. Crack Nashville Metro Police determine the cell phone could be an IED and blow up his bag. (Really). The only thing that had the last pictures Vince took. This is a clear cut case of excessive force. From Alabama to Oregon across the United States government agencies use what happened in Nashville as an example of what not to do.

"If you research the last homeless person killed by Nashville Metro this year you will see the Nashville Metro Police also stated he had an air gun. It is probably the same air gun the cops supposed found in the theater. How come all the homeless people killed in Nashville have air guns? An air gun costs $80 to $100.

"I would like to extend my deepest regret to the family. If I had been able to find Vince there would not have been an incident."

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