Mom shoots New Zealand man who flew to US to confront teen he met online
(CNN) – A mother in Richmond, Virginia has shot a man who flew from New Zealand to the US to confront her 14-year-old daughter whom he had met online.
Troy George Skinner, 25, arrived at the girl’s home in Richmond, Virginia last Friday, while armed with a knife, pepper spray and duct tape, according to Goochland County police.
He had smashed the glass door and was reaching inside to unlock it when the girl’s mother fired her handgun, striking him in the neck. He survived.
Skinner had first met the girl on Discord, a platform and chat site for gamers. After several months, she stopped talking to him, despite Skinner’s attempts to continue contact.
“He was not invited here, he was not expected here, he had been told in the past that this daughter no longer wished to communicate with him,” said Goochland Sheriff James Agnew at a news conference on Monday.
Agnew said that the girl’s mother was not aware of the communication.
After they stopped talking online, Skinner embarked on an extensive journey to reach her home, flying from Auckland to Sydney to Los Angeles to Washington, D.C., then taking a bus to Richmond.
The multi-stop trip further indicated deliberate planning on Skinner’s part, Agnew said.
“This was not random, this was not spontaneous, this was something very planned,” he added.
Skinner then bought the knife and duct tape from a Walmart store. Armed and dressed in black, he headed to the girl’s house.
According to the Richmond Times-Dispatch, the girl’s mother was at home painting when she heard a knock. When she didn’t answer, Skinner went to the back door, through which he spotted the mother inside.
“I need some help, I’ve hitchhiked here 30 miles,” he told her through the door.
Skinner eventually threw a landscaping brick through the glass door, even as the mother warned him repeatedly that she had a gun. As he reached inside through the broken glass, she fired twice, hitting him in the neck.
After arriving on the scene, the police transferred Skinner to the VCU Medical Center, where he is currently being treated.
“He is not the victim,” Agnew said. “That lady and her family members are the victims here.”
‘The last guy I would expect’
One of Skinner’s friends told the New Zealand Herald that he was shocked at the news.
“This was the last guy I would expect to do something like this,” said Shamar Singh, who has been friends with Skinner for eight years.
According to the Herald, Skinner had asked to borrow a few hundred dollars from Singh two weeks ago, claiming he was visiting a dying friend overseas.
Singh said Skinner hadn’t been in trouble with the law before.
Agnew told CNN that Skinner has been arrested but not yet booked, and will “face an enhanced penalty for committing this crime while armed with a deadly weapon.”
Skinner will be held without bond after his release from the hospital, and will then be booked and have a bond hearing at the Goochland District Court.