Tyrese, we have not forgotten you

As we observe the first anniversary of Tyrese’s declared death on October 11th, we reflect upon where we were a year ago, and where we are today.

Tyrese Robert Ruffin, biological son of Adrian Peterson and Ashley Doohen, was hit in the head on October 9, 2013, causing blunt force trauma resulting in death, as per the death certificate. Charged with this child abuse, resulting in death, is Joseph Patterson.

After a short period of time in jail, Joseph Patterson was released on bond. While out on bond, he assaulted and kidnapped Tyrese’s mother, Ashley, and was again arrested and charged with additional felony charges. ¬†And as unbelievable as it may seem, he was yet again able to bond out. Joseph Patterson who has been charged with child abuse, child abuse resulting in death, second degree murder, assault, kidnapping amongst other charges, is walking the streets of Sioux Falls a free man.

Now as life would have it, Adrian Peterson, father of Tyrese, has become entangled in his own legal problems involving, yes, a child abuse charge. Adrian has admitted to disciplining another of his sons, with a tree branch, called a switch. I understand that the spanking with this switch left visable marks on his son.

Adrian Peterson, a professional football player, has been suspended from play in the NFL until the outcome of his felony charges are determined in the courts. Currently trial is set for December, with current legal wrangling likely to push any trial date past the end of Adrian’s regular playing season.

Perhaps you can see the parallel that I am drawing. There are two sons from the same father. One son is dead. One son is not. One man is accused of murder, the other man is not. One man is walking free; the other man is a walking prisoner watching his career as it melts away.

We all know that we have a legal system and not a justice system. However, for the victims, this is a hollow consolation. There are open wounds that will not heal as the legal system tries to find its way.

Ty, on this the anniversary of your death, we honor your all-too-short life. Your two years with us will be treasured for a lifetime and beyond.Adrian Peterson, Tyrese Ruffin, Joey Joseph Patterson

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