FARRAGUT, Tenn. (WATE) — A convicted murderer in Knox County will be up for parole soon, and now the family of the couple who was killed is asking for the community’s help to keep him behind bars.
Jeanne Dotts Brykalski describes the day her parents died as the worst day of her life. 26 years later, she’s having to relive all of the details of that day as she fights to keep their killer, David Scarbrough, in prison.
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The murder happened in February of 1995. Jeanne says her parents had gone to dinner. They returned to intruders in their home. They were both shot, Les five times, Carol, seven, with a 9mm gun.
Jeanne says she’ll never forget the day sheriff’s deputies came to her home to deliver the news.
“Every synapse in my brain fired and shut down at the same time. It’s kind of like I don’t really remember it but it’s kind of like I was watching it from above because I was so frozen or in shock. I mean how do you absorb that kind of horrible information?”
Prosecutors said three people were there that night. Two inside the house, David Scarbrough was one of them. The other was Thomas Gagne. Outside was a 13-year-old boy acting as a lookout. After a trial in 1998, Scarbrough was charged with two counts of felony murder, two counts of theft, and one count of aggravated burglary.
He was given the option of a retrial, but in 2006 pleaded guilty to the murders. Today, Jeanne wants all the help she can get convincing the parole board that he should stay behind bars.
“I created a petition on change.org and I’ve been sending out to a lot of grassroots support groups, murder victims support group, and so forth. Anybody who has ever been through this knows someone who has been through this who could possibly understand what it’s like to be absolutely terrified that someone that murdered your family could possibly be back out on the street and destroy another family like they did mine.”
Jeanne says she’s hoping for 5,000 signatures on the petition. The family is also planning to ask the parole board for Scarbrough not to be allowed another parole hearing for at least six years.