Midland – Burglar alarms rang repeatedly on the evening the man was shot in his own home. He had earlier taken the precaution to use tie wire to secure doors in order to block off unused rooms.
Buddy Wayne Webb believes he trapped an intruder inside a bathroom, and that person alerted others who attacked him in a murderous gunshot raid in order to free their companion.
For fourteen months, Buddy Wayne Webb had been living with the notion that turned to proof at the point of a gun that he was not alone when he was at home.
Blood gushed from the wounded man’s ankle as he crawled in his pickup truck in shock from the gunshot that had sliced through bone and tendon only moments before. He couldn’t find his cell phone; it’s a mystery as to why the telephone land lines weren’t working, but he found a cordless phone in his pocket was useless.
After eight days in a hospital, he returned home to find the phones working.
Wounded, in desperation he did what Texans and others throughout the Sun Belt do every day, on a routine basis. He drove to the nearest 7-11, where he met a female police officer, who today says she was not there, that the meeting never took place. Someone called an ambulance.
It would be in extremely poor taste – a total defiance of the conventions of polite society, as it were – to just haul off and ask Buddy Wayne Webb if it hurts when he walks. Medical records note that on every visit to doctors, they advised him to have his leg amputated just below the knee, that as the months went by, his wound was slowly improving, but it was still “pretty smelly.”
But that’s just the beginning. Consider this hateful “private message” delivered to his Facebook page last Sunday, August 2 on a smoldering dog day afternoon when temperatures in the Permian Basin bastion of neoconservatism, Midland, a buttoned-down global corporate regional capital of the New World Order’s one-horse show – the oil and gas “bidness,” hovered near 100 degrees.
Someone who is calling himself Lance Eggleston really has a problem with Buddy Wayne living in peace in the privacy of his own home.
LANCE: Remember we know who you are! We know where you sleep! We have access to your residence at all times!! No one will ever believe your story, we will come again…..
The Buddy Wayne Webb residence is located just across the ubiquitous suburban head-high cypress privacy fence from an alley that carries freight truck traffic to a big box building supply store situated on a limited access boulevard in a buttoned – down suburb that could be in any sun belt location, from the mid-cities of the Metromess to an anonymous metropolitan cluster of McMansions, small, medium, or large – Brownsville to Pampa, Beaumont to El Paso.
This one is different. A crippled man lives there all alone, pleading with an indifferent world through an ISP address to believe – to please believe – that he was “hunted like an animal” in his own home.
Get a load of cyber-terrorism, Texas style, in the twenty-first century. It’s not much different from any other poison pen, black hand missive ever scribbled, in blood or thunder, on paper or parchment, in any previous century:
LANCE: We are watching you mr. Webb careful of what you post….
ME: I really don’t understand who you are Lance. Are you a good guy or a bad guy? A cop or a gangster? Are you wanting truth and justice or silence, murder and more crime?
LANCE: You will be silenced! Not if but when!
ME: When are you going to murder me Lance?
This is no time for the vaudevillian, it-only-hurts-when-I-laugh bravado of the matinee melodrama. These are the grim terms of the morbid vendetta.
Buddy Wayne is obviously a man in a heap of trouble, and for all intents and purposes, it appears he came by it honestly. One is reminded of those glossy postcards printed in primary colors depicting Donald Duck in Margaritaville, stretched out on a tropical cabana lounger, glaring with alarm at a bullet hole in the stucco wall, just over his head.
By the time his career in natural gas processing brought him from his native Hobbs, just across the line in New Mexico, to Midland’s computerized, automated operations centers, Buddy Wayne had enough life savings to buy a good home in a decent neighborhood, a far cry from his former digs in a ghost town named Orla, a tiny dot on the map between Pecos and Carlsbad, where he lived in a company camp at a natural gas plant.
Life in the roomy villa with contemporary high-hipped rooflines built around a central great room behind an attached double garage on a sun-baked cul de sac was – well, strange – from the beginning.
Buddy Wayne could tell, he was not alone in the house. There were strange sounds in the attic, where he found the duct work split open to air condition the usually brutally hot conditions under the roof. There were ample signs that someone was hanging out up there. He’s got the pictures to prove it.
What’s more, when he left for work or errands, he often returned to a dwelling place obviously violated by intruders, a place where lights and televisions were turned on, computers pulsed, drawers were open, doors closed – a place where things just weren’t the way he left them.
In desperation, he installed security cameras, and numerous other devices aimed at discouraging intruders.
And then, on January 28, 2012, he got shot.
On a night when motion detectors and burglar alarms were ringing off the wall, he recalls, he was “hunted like an animal” as he carried a shotgun loaded with birdshot to a utility room and intended to exit through a door leading to his garage when a gunshot cut through his right ankle, leaving a through and through wound that has crippled him for life.
He set his shotgun down to open the double-locked door, secured by a bolt.
The path of the blast came from exactly 2 ¾ inches above floor level, slicing through tendon and bone, leaving his foot and ankle grotesquely misshapen.
I wasn’t shot with my own gun!
It’s a recurring theme in his story. It’s the one he is positive about.
“There is proof…that I wasn’t shot with my own gun such as the size of the pellets from my gun won’t match the size of the pellets from my ammo. No empty shotgun shell was found, as would be expected. There isn’t enough physical room to be shot by a 48-inch long shotgun in this space, and the surgeon stated a large amount of plastic was removed with the pellets, which isn’t consistent with my ammo.”
Surveillance cameras he had installed outside his house depicted his escape on all fours, dragging his useless, bleeding right leg.
Shortly after the attack, someone disabled them, turned their lenses to a wall to give a nice, ultra-sharp depiction of the brickwork and trim.
During the months of his recovery, he learned that someone had attempted to disable a surveillance camera inside the bedroom, and the hard drives was overwritten by subsequent depiction.
The intruders in attempting to disable the camera actually started it. They caught themselves on camera – without knowing it.
A camera located at floor level in a bedroom depicted a team of men and women wearing police uniforms as they rummaged through dresser drawers and searched closets.
Buddy Wayne noticed at a much later date that the time stamp on the camera depiction shows they were there at a time much earlier than dispatch records show they ever arrived.
They have never been identified, according to Buddy Wayne. He calls them the “secret police.”
When he put a montage of their images on his Facebook page on Sunday afternoon, offering a $100 reward to anyone who can identify them, the mysterious individual who goes by Lance Eggleston contacted him on the private message service with the veiled threats quoted above.
The path of the gunshot emanates from a cabinet that never really fit correctly, its lower shelf threshold exactly 2 ¾ inches above the level of the slab. Grout for the floor tile was missing when Buddy Wayne moved in. He thinks that’s where a tunnel terminated inside his house, a tunnel that was filled in during the three days of his recovery before police officers appeared at the hospital seeking permission to make an extensive search of his home.
Buddy Wayne also believes that tunnel was dug and maintained for purposes of smuggling, human trafficking – something – and his attackers wanted to kill him to regain control of his house.
A time line of the events at Buddy Wayne’s house (click for full size)
IT MUST HAVE BEEN A RUDE MOVING-OUT
But the fulcrum, the pivot point, of this whodunit centers around his monumentally short and sweet marriage – one that lasted only a little more than a stretch of three months.
The prospects for survival of this seeming conundrum of spiraling violence driven by the maddening pain of a crippling injury by gunshot are greatly complicated by a court order that stripped Buddy Wayne Webb of his right to keep and bear arms. That’s all about his divorce. He married Lori Beth Schlagal, a woman he met on-line, through the auspices of Match.com.
It was a whirlwind courtship that began in late fall of 2011, followed by a wedding and honeymoon that ended in divorce court by late January of 2012 – right around the time when someone tried to blow his foot off with a well-placed gunshot to the ankle of his right leg.
By the time December of 2013 rolled around, he was back in court hearings regarding a protective order regarding his ex-wife and a minor child. When the judge entered his order for protection, he stripped Buddy Wayne of his right to keep and bear firearms for life.
The transcript of those hearings alone cost him $900, he recalls. The ruling is at present under appeal. and because of that, his attorney advised him not to talk about the lifetime protective order; “I entered into evidence a communication with her ex where he told me that she had a lot to do with the murder attempt and then threatened to have him killed, this was also ignored before ruling a lifetime PO and taking away my rights to own guns…It has to be an incredible read.”
Detective Sergeant Rosie Rodriguez – the female police officer who denied she saw Buddy Wayne at the 7-11 – offered court testimony at the protective order hearing that she believes evidence shows he booby-trapped the utility room area near the door to the garage with his own gun, that the shooting resulted for that reason.
As an old acquaintance once said of her girlfriend’s separation from a Louisiana roughneck in a Ship Channel trailer court, an incident that involved hurled butcher knives, holes in the sheetrock, blood, cops, and the frayed nerves of numerous neighbors, “It must have been a rude moving-out…”
There’s more, much more, and it’s all documented on Buddy Wayne’s YouTube channel in dozens of video presentations, most of them titled by questions regarding prostitution rings, allegations of smuggling, and nefarious collusion by “secret” police, cancer doctors, radiologists, and speculation that the reason the Midland Wal-Mart SuperCenter, located only a hoot and a holler from his front door, is that it could possibly be a marshalling center for a super secret special operations plot involving Jade Helm 15.
What do the cops have to say about it? In a quick phone call to police headquarters, the detective who fielded the inquiry listened for only a moment before saying, “Oh, you mean Buddy Webb?” He assured The Legendary that, “We have detectives who monitor his Facebook page on a daily basis.” Buddy Wayne says – often – that the clinical term “paranoid schizophrenic” is routinely mentioned by persons who are – well, indifferent – in context with the character of his concerns. “I have never been diagnosed with that psychiatric condition,” he insists.
Nevertheless, there is ample evidence of that opinion inscribed on police reports.
He recalls that in a parting shot on the day she was moving out, he told his bride of late fall in the depths of early winter of his call to the Drug Enforcement Administration to report his suspicion there is a tunnel under his house.
“I know about the tunnels and I’ve already called the DEA.”
So it goes.
So mote it be.