Family of Whitfield shooting victims speaks - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Family of Whitfield shooting victims speaks

By Megan Boatwright
Channel 3 Eyewitness News

DAWNVILLE, WHITFIELD (WRCB) - Mindy Bullard's family spoke with Channel 3 Friday.  Their account matches what we heard on the 911 tapes. 

The family says her ex-boyfriend David Hartline was possessive, and obsessive. 

The family didn't want to be identified on camera.

They told Channel 3 they wanted Hartline out of her life, but they never expected what happened Thursday night. 

"The two men that were there were great people," says the relative.  "They walked into this and now their lives are gone." 

Besides the horror of losing their grandfather, and for three of Bullard's children, their father, the six children who were home when David Hartline snapped and opened fire, also have to live with what they saw. 

"The younger ones are doing good," says the relative.  "The older ones have their moments of course." 

Right before Hartline burst into the upstairs room, Bullard hid her children in an attic crawl space, but through the slats in the wood they saw and heard everything.

"They're visualizing it every second," says the relative.  Bullard's children are now staying with this same relative.  "They saw everything, the blood, the gun shots, everything." 

Bullard's relatives and her two older daughters told us David Hartline wouldn't leave Bullard alone.

"He was infatuated with her," says the relative.  "He wouldn't not leave her alone." 

The family says they believe it was the presence of Bullard's ex-husband at the birthday party that sent Hartline over the edge.

"He said if he finds the kids he will kill them too," the relative says. 

Even though family members say they didn't like Hartline and wanted him out of their lives, they never expected this type of violence.

"Some of the kids didn't like him.  They were just like, 'Mom please get away from him.' She didn't believe he would ever hurt them." 

Mindy Bullard's family tells us she underwent surgery Friday afternoon on her ankle.  She shattered it when she jumped out the window to escape Hartline. 

The family is asking the community to help them any way they can.  A fund for Mindy Bullard and her family has been set up at the First Bank of Dalton.

 

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