Pendleton shooter had threatened ex-wife, co-workers
When Kenneth James Bailey showed up at his estranged wife's Pendleton home Thursday, he was heavily armed with a Romanian-style fully automatic rifle, numerous magazines and a .40 Glock pistol with an extended magazine.
"He was wearing a flak jacket. Now I do not know if that was bullet resistant. He also had a gas mask, leather gloves, and of course all of his ammo and his weapons....he meant business" said Pendleton Police Chief Mark Farrer.
Longtime friend and neighbor Roger Stigall could not believe this was the same man who was always lending a helping hand.
"I am very shocked to hear this. This is not Jim. I mean, he's a very quiet, very nice, very caring, giving person," said Stigall.
Police believe Bailey fired the shots that killed neighbor Neal Shull, who was on his way home when his vehicle was struck. Shull died at the scene. Bailey's body was found hours later. Two police officers were injured and a police K-9 was shot and killed.
Stigall says Jim, as he was known by, never got over his wife Claudia leaving him last year after 30 years of marriage.
"He's been very depressed since then. I've talked with him, spent time with him. His son, his daughter, his grandkids, everybody has been coming, spending time with him. His son has an auto shop he has been working down there, staying busy. I thought everything was okay," said Stigall.
According to Madison County court documents, Claudia Bailey filed a protective order against her husband just one day ago after numerous threats to harm her and her co-workers. In one instance, he allegedly threatened to shoot everyone who walked in or out of the store where she worked.
"No, never said a word about anything like that. He was just trying to move on and he was going to have to sell the house because...too many memories," said Stigall.
Documents obtained by Eyewitness News show police were aware that he had multiple weapons inside his home and that he had threatened his wife and co-workers. That was back in January 2011.
According to detectives, that investigation never led to charges.
Both the Henry County Sheriff's Department and the New Castle police chief knew of Bailey but never arrested him.
The same held true for police in Pendleton.
"I want to say he looked familiar but as far as him being someone we knew, no. Definitely not," said Farrer.
Some say Bailey was controlling and obviously dangerous. Others saw him as a depressed man trying to deal with the end of a marriage. For everyone involved, hindsight is now 20/20.