An Oklahoma man was shot and killed by a neighbor on June 2 while he was trying to drown his own 3-month-old twins.
Leland Michael Foster, 27, was reportedly holding the mother at bay with a knife while trying to submerge the babies in a bathtub.
While the mother frantically called police, the 12-year-old granddaughter of the homeowner ran to a neighbor’s house seeking help, according to Lisa Bratcher, the Public Information Director for Ada, Oklahoma.
The neighbor, Cash Freeman, armed himself with a pistol and entered the home, where he found Foster in the bathroom, holding the babies underwater in the bathtub while fending the mother off with a knife. Bratcher said that Freeman shot Foster twice, killing him.
When police arrived, the children were handed off to EMS paramedics, who transported them to an area hospital and then on to an Oklahoma City Hospital.
The 3-month-old twins -- a boy and a girl, who were born prematurely -- were reportedly in stable condition and are scheduled to be released from the hospital on May 3.
Freeman was questioned and released by police, but Bratcher said the man’s actions will be reviewed by the district attorney’s office to determine whether he will face any charges for the shooting.
In an off-camera interview with KFOR, Freeman explained that he did what he had to do to save the babies, but expressed concern that he could be in trouble for using lethal force.
Summer Pierce, a neighbor who knows the children, thinks Freeman should not face any charges. "I think he did the right thing because who knows what would happen, because who knows what would have happened to the babies if he hadn’t intervened," Pierce said. "They might not have made it.”
The Oklahoma Office of the Chief Medical Examiner will conduct an autopsy and toxicology screening on Foster’s body to determine whether he was under the influence of alcohol or narcotics.
According to court records, Foster has prior criminal charges for arson and domestic abuse. In 2011, officers responding to Foster's home on a domestic abuse complain. They found a pile of clothes burning on a mattress and a bathtub filled with water and various electronics, NewsOK reported.