Florida deputies who responded to a call and saw two young boys murdered are now suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, News 4 Jax reports.
As CrimeOnline previously reported, Putnam County Sheriff Gator DeLoach announced last week that Robert Baker, 12, and Tayten Baker, 14, were both found murdered on August 25 inside a common area of the family’s Melrose home, off of Shiloh Road.
Investigators found a hammer and a knife inside the residence. The sheriff confirmed both items were used as weapons during the attacks.
The children’s mother said she was asleep with a younger child when the incident happened and woke up to find her boys unresponsive. She called 911 immediately but the attack left both victims dead. The children’s grandfather, who lives nearby, said he attempted CPR while waiting for help to arrive.
Tampa Bay Times reports that the suspect, identified as 30-year-old Mark Wilson, Jr., had been living in a shed on the family’s property with his girlfriend.
The victims’ family, who knew Wilson, had recently moved to the area themselves to be closer to relatives. According to Fox 32, the children’s mother is the sister of Wilson’s girlfriend.
Deputies who arrived at the home saw a gruesome crime scene in which two young boys had been mercilessly and senselessly killed. The deputies were so traumatized by the scene that they had a mandatory meeting with Dr. Tina Jaeckle, a mental health professional who assists authorities employed with the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office.
“This scene was … likely the worst that I’ve seen in more than 20 years of law enforcement,” Col. Joe Wells, with the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office, told News 4 Jax. “Many of these detectives and deputies that were there have children. Some may even have young boys at this age, so it hits home.”
Retired JSO officer Ken Jefferson added that most people in law enforcement will come across brutal scenes that can stick with them for years to come. He added it’s better to seek out mental health treatment sooner rather than later.
“If you don’t get the help and you think you’re OK, it can be impactful how you deal with calls or investigations in some kind of way,” Jefferson said.
Wilson has an extensive criminal history, including property crimes and drugs, but no known charges for violent crimes until now. He’s been charged with two counts of murder and remains behind bars without bail.
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[Feature Photo: Robert and Tayten Baker/Handout]