Shelby Adolphson had a birthday yesterday. But she wasn’t doing much celebrating. She spent her birthday in a hospital intensive care in critical condition.
She married David Adolphson in 1988. She is the mother of two young daughters, and the reason she is in the hospital is one that she has feared.
Shelby Adolphson filed for divorce a year ago in March 2006. A hearing was scheduled for May 15.
Last month she accused David Adolphson of harrassment and threats of physical harm against her and her family. She requested and was granted a temporary restraining order which ordered him to stay at least 100 yards away from her. And she reported at least three violations of that restraining order.
Shelby Adolphson was at work on Tues. and left the building about noon. She made a call to 911. On the call dispatchers reportedly heard a woman yelling at someone not to shoot her.
In the parking lot, she was shot once in the head by a rifle, allegedly held by her husband.
He fled the scene, and when he spotted deputies responding the sheriff’s office says that he stopped his vehicle and used the same rifle to shoot himself. He died at the scene. Shelby Adolphson was found unreponsive and was taken to the hospital where she remains.
She did what she could do. She separated from her husband. She reported the incidents of threats and harrassment. She requested and followed through on the restraining order. And when the order was violated- she reported it. Not once- but three times.
Multiple threats alleged. She believed he was dangerous, and she told the court so. The order from the court said that he had to stay at least 100 yards from her. And there are repercussions for violating a restraining order- right? After violating the restraining once, with no repercussions- should he have believed that violating it again would cause him repercussions? So two more violations, and no repercussions.
Now it is understood that the repeated threats, the violations of the court order- those were signs he was dangerous. Of course, she is in no shape to feel any relief that she is finally believed. Yeah, she is in the hospital in critical condition.
A protection/restraining order can not be relied on to protect. It is a tool for law enforcement to use to help assure the safety of the person being victimized. But the tool is only as good as the enforcement of it. Non-enforcement makes it useless.
Had Adolphson been ordered to wear a monitor, she might have had a chance- at least law enforcement would have known he was in her area. Of course they would have had to respond and enforce that too.