Photo by Curt Yeomans
Accused cop killer Veasna Johnathan Bun rests his face in one of his hands as the third day of his trial for killing Clayton County Sheriff's Deputy Rick Daly begins, on Thursday.
Veasna Johnathan Bun considered taking his own life, in a shed, while law enforcement officers searched for him in the hours after Clayton County Sheriff’s Deputy Rick Daly was shot and killed on July 20, 2011, a video of his initial interview with investigators showed.
In the video, Bun was shown telling Georgia Bureau of Investigations Special Agent Jonathan Spurlock, and Clayton County District Attorney’s Office Investigator James Payne, that he shot Daly, and was scared of what would happen to him afterward. He also told investigators that he had called both of his parents while he was on the run, and hiding in a shed. He said he apologized to them for what he had done.
During the interview, he indicated that he was suicidal following the shooting, but it was thoughts of his relatives that kept him alive.
“I was planning to shoot myself in the shed,” Bun told the investigators. “But, I didn’t do that, because I was thinking about my family.”
The video was shown at the beginning of Bun’s trial for allegedly killing Daly. As it was shown in the courtroom, a dozen members of Daly’s family, including his widow, Cheryl Daly, sat stoically as they listened to Bun’s description of the shooting. During the interview, he told investigators that he never planned to shoot the deputy, but that his “mind went blank” as Daly pulled over the vehicle he was riding in.
“I knew what was going on, but yet I didn’t know what was going on,” Bun said.
Daly was pulling the vehicle over to arrest Bun on an outstanding warrant stemming from a January 2011 robbery of a store in Forest Park.
“I wanted to put it [the gun] down, but ... my mind went blank, and I shot him,” Bun told his interviewers. “I know what you are thinking. You think I wanted to shoot the police, and run away, and try to hide. I’m telling you my intention was to put down the gun.”
But Bun’s statements to investigators seemed to be conflicting at times. Although he initially said he planned to put the gun down, he later said he wanted to only shoot Daly in his bullet-proof vest before running away.
“Was that what you were aiming for?” Spurlock asked Bun.
The teenager replied: “Yes. If I really wanted to kill him, I would have shot him in the head, but I figured I’d just shoot him in the vest.”
As Bun could be herd talking about aiming for Daly’s bulletproof vest, the slain deputy’s son, Fayette County Sheriff’s Deputy Toby Daly, reached over and clasped his mother Cheryl Daly's hand.
As the interview came to a conclusion, Bun could be heard asking investigators what his punishment would likely be for killing Daly.
“Am I eligible for execution?” Bun asked the interviewers. “I actually want that to happen.”
The State Medical Examiner, Dr. Jonathan Eisenstat, later testified that the two bullets that struck Daly caused significant internal damage.
One bullet entered the deputy’s left shoulder, fractured some ribs, punctured the left lung, and became lodged in Daly’s lower rib cage. The other bullet, entered his left torso, just above his waist, and punctured his spleen, two blood vessels, his small intestines, and fractured his pelvic bone, where it came to a stop.
The bullet that entered the torso caused more than 550 milliliters of blood to leak into Daly’s abdomen, while the other bullet caused approximately 400 milliliters of blood to leak into the left lung, Eisenstat testified. “Either one of them could have been fatal,” he said.
Bun was scheduled to take the witness stand, in his own defense today, at 2 p.m. Check news-daily.com later for updates.