It was three years in the past that Wealthy Rider sat in a courtroom on the Pottawatomie County courthouse, and listened to the proof towards certainly one of his father’s killers.
That have helped reignite a deep seeded ardour to grow to be a police officer, and it was simply this yr that he turned a full-time officer with the Shawnee Police Division.
“I chased this dream for fairly a very long time, and a bit bit later in life than what some individuals have, and it’s value each second!” stated Rider.
Now, each time Rider will get into his patrol automotive, he thinks again to when native regulation enforcement helped him and his household get via their darkest hour – the slaying of his father Albert.
“It gave me a want to need to do this for another person hopefully,” stated Rider. “I’ll go my entire profession with by no means getting that chance – however that is what drives me.”
Albert Rider was solely fifty three years previous and had simply returned from his honeymoon when he was fatally shot on October eight, 2012. The lethal encounter occurred after he confronted two of the three males answerable for a break-in at his residence.
“He jumps out of his van, confronts them, and finally ends up getting right into a struggle with each of them. Then they pistol whip him,” recollects Richard Smothermon, the district lawyer who prosecuted the homicide case. “They bounce into his van that’s sitting on the aspect of the street and peel away.”
However Smothermon stated Albert Rider refused to allow them to get away, and jumped on the again of the van to attempt to cease them from leaving.
“Considered one of them begins capturing out the window, finally ends up capturing Albert Rider within the hand,” stated Smothermon. “So, now he is been crushed down, jumped on the again of a van and been shot, and he nonetheless persists in preventing with them.”
The DA stated the case left a profound influence on him. Particularly after he came upon that Albert Rider was the sort of man who all the time tried to assist individuals. After which he came upon one of many suspects used to work for Rider and was even helped by him at one time.
Smothermon stated he even went to Rider’s funeral – however he says he had no concept then the bond he would forge with Rider’s son Wealthy, and the way that bond would proceed to develop and strengthen by way of the trial and past.
In the long run, James Isaac South was convicted of first-diploma homicide and sentenced to life with out parole.
Michael Preston Choate would plead responsible to second diploma homicide, conspiracy, and second diploma housebreaking and was sentenced to 35 years, with 10 of these years to be served in jail.
Bradley A. Keith was the third suspect and was sentenced to serve 35 years in jail for costs he confronted referring to the case.
Albert Rider left behind a spouse, a son and two daughters. He additionally left behind eight grandchildren, two of which he by no means had the prospect to satisfy.
“However out of that tragedy a lot good has come from it you realize” stated Smothermon. “The great that’s Wealthy Rider – who’s now a police officer with the Shawnee Police Division – who left a excessive paying job to serve the general public due to his involvement with this case. And what he felt his name from God was! I imply these do not occur in each case!”
Wealthy Rider stated at first all he needed to do was be a part of the reserves, nevertheless it was the encouragement from his spouse and Smothermon that lead him to chase his dream of turning into a full-time officer.
“I attempted and I am right here and I like it – completely like it,” stated Rider.
The one message Rider has for everybody out there’s to by no means surrender in your ardour. And he says he is aware of his father can be pleased with the choice he made.
“I actually consider that he’d be actually completely happy and proud,” stated Rider.
However one man who can also be proud is Smothermon, who now considers Rider not only a fellow regulation enforcement official, not only a crime sufferer however a good friend.
“Wealthy Rider and I are endlessly going to be intertwined,” stated Smothermon. “We’re all the time going to have these moments that solely he and I’ve due to God – the issues that occurred in that case can solely be defined by God. It’s going to really make him one of many nice ones.”