Updated case description ( July 2016 ) :
Don Tolliver accused of shooting a girlfriend in 2011 while his children slept upstairs. Family and friends hope to present evidence not shown in court,and clarify why he testified “I was afraid of her” at the 2014 trial. Don, a single father, no domestic violence in his background, worked sixty to seventy hours a week to ensure his four children had a good home. The hardworking dad had a steady job of twelve years, twice divorced granted custody of his children after each one. He lived with this woman three months, charged with attempted murder and shooting with intent to kill.
On December 27th, 2011 Don, shaken at the police station denied shooting her after his arrest. Hospitalized, the “victim” released with non life-threatening injuries walking out with a band-aid , confirmed what he said was true. Promising to tell the District Attorney after she admitted it happened, fearing Don was leaving her. Confiding to our mother, she had no place to go or car to drive, Don’s vehicle, trailer and everything he owned, loaned to her. Mad because we started asking for the car back months later, screaming you shot me after waiting 45 minutes to see Don at the Delaware County jail. The car sold with a forged signature, trailer walls, kicked in, nothing inside. Don spent everyday with his children, bail money not raised. A mental health specialist found Don incompetent. A judge examined the evidence and suggested sending him home after treating him for depression.
The public defender revealed at the trial the “victims” ever changing affidavits, prosecutor found putting false information in the case file, confident Don was going home encouraging him to agree, act remorseful minutes before the trial started. During the trial jurors heard rehearsed state’s witnesses, family of the victim, (examples) Don stole her money planning to flee the country. A loaded gun kept in a kitchen drawer with his two young boys in the house. The District Attorney the only reason why the case went as far as it did, concluded he shot her, ran downstairs, laid the gloves he was wearing side by side neatly on the bed and left. Don argued and said it did not happen that way, the public defender raised few objections, sat there doodling 90% of the time. Calling no one in Don’s defense, closing statement, ” Do the right thing.” Don found guilty, sentence 35 years. Don deserves a fair trial. Our requests for the OSBI to investigate misconduct in the Delaware County Sheriffs office, that did everything in their power to violate Don’s civil rights turned down by the District Attorney.
Original case description:
Don was a single parent of 5 children. He had been married twice before the 1st for 5 years 2nd 8 years. One of these was not his biological but he took her, her mother was doing drugs. Don left his first wife for this. He worked sometimes 6 or 7 days a week. He was a maintenance supervisor. He worked there 12 years.
He started seeing this girl. His home was not big enough so he rented a home for all his children and her and her daughter who was pregnant. Within a few weeks two of his children moved in with our parents because she was pushed off her dad’s lap. The other one had heard this woman making a drug deal in the bathroom of this house. Don started distancing his self from our family. When he would come around my mother would start asking questions about his girlfriend. He told my mom he was going to marry her. We could not believe it. She was twice his size and didn’t like his children.
On December 28th, 2011, Don watched this woman make a drug deal in their front yard. I believe somewhere in the newspapers he said “rat pusher” in court this is the reasoning for that. My brother hates drugs. It ruined his first marriage. After he saw her do this he went downstairs to their bedroom and was getting some clothes out. He was gonna get his children up and bring them to my mom. This happened at 6:30 in the morning. There was a fight. My brother does not fight. He is one of those people that just don’t say anything he will just leave. This women got his gun out of a locked box downstairs and told him “if you leave I will kill myself” there was no clip in the gun but there was a single bullet in it. He didn’t know that. He kept his guns downstairs because he didn’t trust his boys around them.He tried to grab it out her hand. Why? He said she hit him on the top of the head with it. The bullet went through the skin on the back of her neck.
It scared him when she was shot. He left and drove his car a couple of miles and parked trying to think about what he should do. He said he was not thinking clearly. Don had been in bad car wreck a couple of years before this and was life lighted in critical condition because of head trauma we almost lost him. He had a goose egg on the top of his head where she hit him. At this point he couldn’t see really straight so he got a ride into town and tried to get into the courthouse but it was closed for the holidays. He was walking down to my parents home where he was arrested.
The day of the trial she turned it all around. He tied her up. He got the gun out of a kitchen drawer and shot her. He stole all her money. His public defender told Don you will probably be going home the first day of the trial. She changed her affidavits so many times. Everything that came out of the DA’s mouth was a lie. The assistant DA wanted the DA job the position was up for election. Don was convicted and sentenced to 35 years in prison.
My brother worked long hours. He made over 20 dollars and hour. I have the rent receipt where he paid the rent and the engagement rings he bought her still. She said he was so jealous he synced their phones. She did this because her daughter was going to have a baby and Don owned the only car that was running, her car was broken down in the yard. We have since learned this girl has had her arm broken and police called to her home before because she was fighting with who ever she was living with at the time, she is a serial abuser. Don did not have one person there for his defence. Not one. The whole trial was awful. We thought he would come home. We also think she got caught with drugs on her and testified against Don because she was gonna get in trouble for the drugs. Our family is sick over this. I have a list of everything that DA lied about. There is not just a few. There are many. Don is in granite prison his job is a teachers assistant. He helps inmates get their GED’s.
Case description supplied by Malissa Orns, Don’s sister.