RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – A North Carolina veteran arrested in New York Tuesday on a felony weapon charge is under investigation by General Assembly Police.
Doug Payne said his son, 36-year-old Timothy Payne, suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder.
He believes PTSD led his son to post threatening things on local college campuses and send threats to the North Carolina General Assembly.
Despite losing both legs in an IED attack in 2011, Payne, an Army veteran, had a positive message after being given a Raleigh home in 2015.
“I busted my butt ever since I joined the military, and I didn’t know what the outcome would ever be,” said Payne.
Over the years Payne spent time as an inspirational speaker, participated in marathons, and competed in the Invictus Games. But, according to his father, something changed.
“Things started to slide,” said Doug Payne. “Then it got a little worse, and a little worse. Veterans suffering from PTSD and traumatic brain injuries —sometimes you can never really figure out what their thinking is.”
According to WIVB in Buffalo, New York, Timothy Payne was arrested in western New York on weapons charges after state police there received a message that he had multiple weapons and no permit.
“Tim was just in need of help big time,” said Doug Payne. “He did the right thing by surrendering to the police department in the town where he grew up.”
While Timothy Payne was taken for medical evaluation in New York, his father said he may be in hot water in North Carolina.
“He was upset with the North Carolina Assembly, the state assembly,” said Doug Payne. “He was sending somewhat threatening letters to them.”
North Carolina General Assembly police released the following statement: “The North Carolina General Assembly Police Department does not comment on the status of ongoing investigations, threats to legislators, or to the security of the legislative complex. The Department works with law enforcement agencies from across the country, including New York, to fulfill its mission.”
“The bottom line is he just needed help,” said Payne. “He was misguided. He wasn’t about to hurt anybody, but you don’t poke the bear.”
Payne’s said he feels his son’s arrest may be a good thing because he believes his son can finally get the help he needs.
Veterans who need someone to talk to can click here. Anyone who needs someone to reach out to can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.
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