Timothy Simpkins: GoFundMe removes $25,000 campaign set up to help school shooter
The family of Simpkins, 18, whose victims continue to remain in hospital, asked for $25,000 to help ease the trauma he faced after his dad died
Timberview High School's suspected shooter Timothy Simpkins who was released from jail after posting some amount for the bail which was set to $75,000 needs help to afford therapy. His family set up a GoFundMe account, two days after he shot two people at the Arlington school. The campaign said he needs to go to therapy to let go of the trauma he endured after his father's death. GoFundMe promptly took the campaign down.
Simpkins was on the run after going on a rampage with a .45 caliber handgun. All 1,700 students of the school were evacuated after the incident and Arlington police sent out a tweet with a photo of the suspect asking the public to help nab him, also warning that he could be "armed and dangerous". The Internet began drawing comparisons between Simpkins and Kyle Rittenhouse who is accused of killing protestors in Kenosha, Wisconsin in August 2020. A number of tweets suggested Rittenhouse was dealt a bad hand saying he was painted as a monster by mainstream media and sent to prison immediately but Simpkins was being painted as a "bullied victim".
A Facebook post by Simpkins' family posted on October 7 read, “From the beginning of this school year, Timothy has been bullied at school. He has been beaten, taunted, and harassed on a daily basis. Recently he was ambushed by a group of young males outside of school, stripped of his clothing in front of a crowd of onlookers, and robbed of his money and possessions. He has been humiliated and stripped of his dignity on more than one occasion which led to him being fearful to go to school or even leave our home without an adult.” The post also said that these issues were raised with the school but they took no action.
Simpkins critically injured Zacchaeus Selby, 15, and 25-year-old English teacher Calvin Pettitt. Selby and Simpkins brawled before the latter shot at him four times. Simpkins' family claimed the shooting was an act of self-defense and that he was being constantly picked on at school for having "nice things" like a Dodge charger and coveted sneakers. He walked out of prison on October 7 and a GFM was launched immediately by attorney Kim T. Cole urging people to help with whatever they can. It also included an emotional note by his mother where she mentioned incidents where Simpkins was robbed at gunpoint in the recent past and had his possessions taken away. The note also said his father was beaten to death and that heightened his fear for his life.
"Not to mention that the young man responsible for beating and harassing him had recently made threats to kill him so you see, my son was terrified and believed he would be murdered just like his father. I believe my son's entire story should be heard and I am asking that you help me share it in an effort to balance the one-sided narrative that the media is broadcasting. Please know that I am not suggesting that taking a gun to school was the right choice to make, I am just saying that there is so much more to the story and all of the details should be known.
My son has gone through a very traumatic experience. He needs counseling and therapy. Please donate what you can to help," read a portion of the note. The page was able to raise $150 of the $25,000 amount before being taken down. The spokesman for GFM said, "The fundraiser was removed from the platform because it violated GoFundMe Terms of Service," while confirming all donors were refunded.