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Current Events & Hot Topics Current Events & Hot Topics

'Senseless' shooting of Australian Chris Lane sparks calls for boycott of U.S.

Posted by on Aug. 21, 2013 at 11:34 PM
  • 79 Replies

 

By Hilary Whiteman, CNN
August 22, 2013 -- Updated 0140 GMT (0940 HKT)

Australian baseball player killed in Oklahoma

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: Lane's girlfriend says he was "most amazing person I've ever met"
  • Three teenagers charged over killing of Australian student in Oklahoma
  • Lane was out running when he was shot
  • Former Australian deputy prime minister calls for Australian tourists to boycott U.S.

(CNN) -- They were younger than he was, just teenagers who were driving around, apparently bored and looking for somebody to kill, according to police in Duncan, Oklahoma.

The indiscriminate shooting of Christopher Lane, a 23-year-old Australian who was living his dream of studying in the United States on a baseball scholarship, has repulsed many in his home country and led to calls for Australian tourists to boycott the United States.

"It is another example of murder mayhem on Main Street," former Australian deputy Prime Minister Tim Fischer told CNN's Piers Morgan.

"People thinking of going to the USA for business or tourist trips should think carefully about it given the statistical fact you are 15 times more likely to be shot dead in the USA than in Australia per capita per million people."

Christopher Lane, from Australia, was gunned down in Duncan, Oklahoma, while he was out jogging last week. Police say he was killed by three teens who said they had nothing better to do. Police have now charged the three teens in Lane's death. Christopher Lane, from Australia, was gunned down in Duncan, Oklahoma, while he was out jogging last week. Police say he was killed by three teens who said they had nothing better to do. Police have now charged the three teens in Lane's death.
Michael Jones, 17, faces two charges: use of a vehicle and discharge of a weapon and accessory after the fact to murder in the first degree. Michael Jones, 17, faces two charges: use of a vehicle and discharge of a weapon and accessory after the fact to murder in the first degree.
James Edwards Jr., 15, has been charged as an adult with felony murder in the first degree. James Edwards Jr., 15, has been charged as an adult with felony murder in the first degree.
Chancey Luna, 16, has been charged as an adult with felony murder in the first degree. Chancey Luna, 16, has been charged as an adult with felony murder in the first degree.
Charges filed in death of Australian student
Charges filed in death of Australian student
Charges filed in death of Australian student
Charges filed in death of Australian student
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Charges filed in death of Australian student Charges filed in death of Australian student
Officer: Teens wanted to be gangsters
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Australian student shot dead in U.S.

Police said Lane was on one of his regular runs through what has been described as the affluent town of Duncan on Friday about 3 p.m. when a car carrying three teenagers drove up behind him.

"They pulled up behind him and shot him in the back, then sped away," said Capt. Jay Evans of the Duncan Police Department. "It could have been anybody -- it was such a random act."

Former Deputy Prime Minister of Australia: 'There is deep-seated anger this time'

It was the indiscriminate nature of the attack that has shocked many in Australia.

One local newspaper, under mug shots of the three suspects, age 15, 16 and 17, ran the headline: "Faces of Evil: The teens American police say shot our star."

Late Wednesday, a Facebook page set up in Lane's honor, R.I.P Christopher Lane, had more than 62,000 followers, many of whom described his murder as senseless and tragic.

Lane grew up in Oak Park, a northern suburb of Melbourne in the southern state of Victoria. He showed sporting talent early on and started playing tee ball, a children's version of baseball, at age 7, according to Essendon Baseball Club president Tony Cornish.

"It's shocked our world. The baseball community in Australia is a tight-knit group. Most baseballers know most baseballers and everyone's shattered," Cornish said.

Cornish said Lane was a "very good athlete" who could have played Australian Rules football but chose baseball because it offered him the chance of a college education in America.

"If it didn't work out he could have come back to Australia with an education and also been a much better baseballer. He would have been an elite player in Australia and at our club. That's the type of kid he is -- he created a 'win- win,' in a way, for himself," he said.

Lane's friends and family are being invited to a memorial game in his honor on Sunday, and a donation page has been set up to raise money for a memorial fund in his name.

"He was just the most amazing person I've ever met," Lane's girlfriend of four years, Sarah Harper, told CNN's "Anderson Cooper 360" on Wednesday.

The two had just returned from a visit to Australia. Harper said Lane loved to travel and loved the competitiveness of baseball.

"There's still a lot of shock and disbelief and a lot of anger and sadness," she said. "You can't make sense of it. It's just -- so surreal that anybody could do something like this."

Harper visited the scene of Lane's death on Tuesday. It's a grassy curb on a suburban street where flowers have been placed with messages of regret and condolence.

"I'm going to miss him forever. But I'm really glad that I got the four years with him," Harper told reporters. She and her family will be traveling to Melbourne for Lane's funeral on a date still to be set.

Lane's visibly distraught father, Peter, told the media: "He's left his mark as we know, and you know there's not going to be any good come out of this, because it was just so senseless."

It's shocked our world. The baseball community in Australia is a tight-knit group... everyone's shattered.
Tony Cornish, Essendon Baseball Club

A former student and classmate at East Central University where Lane was studying described him as "a charming guy, genuinely good person, with great character and had a love for life."

"As clich├ęd as it sounds, Chris was the kind of guy you want your sons to grow up to be and that you want your daughters to marry. It just breaks my heart knowing how much more he could have brought to this world as a husband, father, son, brother and friend," Sam Malchar said.

On Tuesday, three teenagers appeared in court charged over the attack, which came one day before they were due to return to school.

James Edwards Jr., 15, and Chancey Luna, 16, were charged as adults with felony murder in the first degree, according to Kaylee Chandler, Stephens County Court clerk.

Michael Jones, 17, faces two charges: use of a vehicle in the discharge of a weapon and accessory after the fact to murder in the first degree.

A judge set bond at $1 million for Jones, while no bond was set for Edwards and Luna, Chandler said.

Security was tightened around the Duncan School District after anonymous phone threats were made to Duncan High School.

Schools opened as normal on Wednesday, but students were not allowed to leave for lunch and parents were being told they could keep their children at home if they wish, according to a statement from school district officials.

by on Aug. 21, 2013 at 11:34 PM
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Replies (1-10):
tooptimistic
by Kelly on Aug. 22, 2013 at 7:46 AM

BUMP!

sweet-a-kins
by Emerald Member on Aug. 22, 2013 at 7:50 AM

They also mentioned our "gun culture" as a reason for their boycott



Tim Fischer, former Australia deputy prime minister, criticized the National Rifle Association and asked Australians to avoid the U.S. as a way to put pressure on its Congress to act on gun control.

"Tourists thinking of going to the USA should think twice," Fischer told the Herald Sun. "I am deeply angry about this because of the callous attitude of the three teenagers, (but) it's a sign of the proliferation of guns on the ground in the USA. There is a gun for almost every American."

Quoting tooptimistic:

BUMP!


-JellyfishEgg-
by New Member on Aug. 22, 2013 at 7:52 AM
Can someone explain why the 17 year old got bond and was only charged as an accessory as opposed to first degree murder like the other two?
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
susannah2000
by Member on Aug. 22, 2013 at 7:52 AM
4 moms liked this

Where are Sharpton's and Jackson's outrage and condemnation? Why aren't they holding these boys responsilble for victimizing this man? Why don't we hear from them when bad black kids do reprehensible things?

sweet-a-kins
by Emerald Member on Aug. 22, 2013 at 7:54 AM

Because they were arrested and chared to the fullest extent of the law

and because the victims family didn't contact them

Quoting susannah2000:

Where are Sharpton's and Jackson's outrage and condemnation? Why aren't they holding these boys responsilble for victimizing this man? Why don't we hear from them when bad black kids do reprehensible things?


susannah2000
by Member on Aug. 22, 2013 at 7:59 AM
2 moms liked this



Quoting sweet-a-kins:

Because they were arrested and chared to the fullest extent of the law

and because the victims family didn't contact them

Quoting susannah2000:

Where are Sharpton's and Jackson's outrage and condemnation? Why aren't they holding these boys responsilble for victimizing this man? Why don't we hear from them when bad black kids do reprehensible things?

Right. What it actually means is that they don't say a word unless it fits into their "vicimization" mantra. I completely doubt they always wait to be "contacted by the family" when they run their mouths other times.



Mrs_Nelson
by Member on Aug. 22, 2013 at 8:00 AM
Based only on what I have seen on tv, maybe he "turned" on the other two and offered to testify against them? They do that on tv.
tooptimistic
by Kelly on Aug. 22, 2013 at 8:05 AM
5 moms liked this


Sure, because stricter gun control laws are going to do so much to stop thugs from getting guns and using them in crimes.  Stricter gun laws would have deterred these three.  *eye roll* 

The NRA doesn't want thugs and criminals having guns.


Quoting sweet-a-kins:

They also mentioned our "gun culture" as a reason for their boycott



Tim Fischer, former Australia deputy prime minister, criticized the National Rifle Association and asked Australians to avoid the U.S. as a way to put pressure on its Congress to act on gun control.

"Tourists thinking of going to the USA should think twice," Fischer told the Herald Sun. "I am deeply angry about this because of the callous attitude of the three teenagers, (but) it's a sign of the proliferation of guns on the ground in the USA. There is a gun for almost every American."

Quoting tooptimistic:

BUMP!




Lottie925
by Bronze Member on Aug. 22, 2013 at 8:05 AM
2 moms liked this

I don't blame them. After they had a terrible school shooting that killed 35. They banned personal assault rifles and people turned in guns willingly - even family heiloom weapons. They also made it harder to obtain guns.

That is a terrible senseless tragedy!

stormcris
by Christy on Aug. 22, 2013 at 8:26 AM
1 mom liked this

Interesting they did not call for the same boycott of Israel.

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