Deputy forgives man who shot him in the face

Deputy forgives man who shot him in the face

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by Evan Sernoffsky, kgw.com staff

kgw.com

Posted on September 18, 2013 at 2:45 PM

Updated Thursday, Sep 19 at 10:37 AM

SALEM – A psychiatric review board approved moving Nick Teixeira, who shot a Clackamas County deputy in the face, to a secure residential facility in Pendleton Wednesday.

Teixeira's move to a new facility begins his long transitional release, which could take around ten years.

In 2003, deputy Damon Coates, a spokesman for the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office well-known in the community, was responding to a disturbance call when he was shot by 15-year-old Teixeira.

Teixeira was diagnosed with mental psychosis and sentenced to 20 years in the Oregon State Hospital.

Coates has been going through an arduous rehabilitation process over the past ten years. He relies on full-time nursing care and undergoes almost daily physical therapy.

On Wednesday, Coates and his wife Tammy met with Teixeira for the first time and forgave him, citing their Christian faith as the bond that allowed that to happen. Teixeira gave the couple a medallion with a cross and Biblical passage.

Though his sentence forbids contact with the Coates family, Tammy and Damon asked that he be allowed to write them so they can help guide his recovery.

Background: Faith sustains family of Clackamas deputy shot 10 years ago

A year-and-a-half ago, Coates suffered major seizures and nearly died again. The seizures left him unable to talk.

In 2010, Teixeira was denied release from the hospital after a similar review.  A doctor testified in that hearing that Teixeira had "a vulnerability toward mental illness." But that there had been no recent signs of psychosis and an authorized release would pose a low risk to the public.

More: Shot deputy glad shooter denied release

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