The parents of Luke Baber reached out exclusively to 13News on Thursday evening.
Darrell and Diana Baber released a statement, breaking their silence more than a week after their son killed two law enforcement officers and injured several other people.
In a telephone interview Thursday, Darrell Baber said he waited until after the funerals of Trooper Eric Workman and Cpl. Marshall Bailey because they didn't want to take anything away from the people who lost loved ones.
"We feel strongly for the people he hurt and are concerned only about that right now," Baber said.
Luke Baber's father said his son had mental problems.
"We couldn't break him away from the drug problem," his father continued. "The drug culture is so deep and connected here, he had no chance against it and we didn't either."
The dad of the shooter said with 35-years of law enforcement experience, he "knows a little bit about investigating and not enough is being done. We are losing the basis of our society."
He went on to say, "Police Officers are not responsible for Luke's death; they only shot him, as they should have. What killed Luke was drug abuse."
The following is the full, unedited text of the Baber's statement:
Parent's Public Statement, Sep 06, 2012, in the Case of: Luke S. Baber
My name is Darrell Baber, of Oak Hill, WV. My wife, Diana Baber, and I are the parents of 22 year old Luke Baber, who Police Authorities have identified as the person responsible for the tragic and deadly shooting, on August 28, 2012, in Clay County, WV. In that incident, my son used a handgun to shoot four men, including WV State Police Cpl. Marshall Bailey, WV State Police Trooper Eric Workman, Roane County WV Sheriff's Deputy John Westfall, and a Tow Truck Operator, Mr. William Massey. Police Authorities further report that, just prior to the shooting, Luke also stole a pickup truck owned by Mr. Hildebrand. We would like to make the following statement concerning the incident.
First, and most importantly, Diana and I want to say to the Victims and their Families, that we are deeply heartbroken and profoundly sorry for Luke's horrible and unbelievably cowardly actions of that evening. We feel that sufficient evidence exists for us to believe that Luke's total disregard for the lives of the four men he shot, and disrespect for the property of the owner of the truck he stole, resulted in the death of Cpl. Bailey, the death of Trooper Workman, serious injury to Deputy Westfall, serious injury to Mr. Massey, and significant damage to the personal property of Mr. -------- Hildebrand. We recognize also, that Luke's mindless and calloused shooting of these four men has caused tremendous pain and suffering for their Families, Friends and coworkers, that will continue to hurt for many years to come. I know of no words that could express exactly how Diana and I feel about what has occurred. We are extremely angry and saddened by what Luke has done to your loved ones and you.
As for my son, Luke, he was shot to death during the incident. At this time, I will not disrespect the Victims by describing the many traits that Luke possessed, that made him a beloved member of our family, and a great friend to many. On several occasions in recent years, we have found it necessary to request the assistance of Police Officers, including State, County and City Forces, as well as Emergency Medical Teams, to help us, and Luke, with problems associated with Luke's troubled life. In every case, responders have been timely, professional, caring, and extremely helpful. We love, respect and honor our wonderful protectors, from Police Officers to Highway Assistance Workers. Police Officers are not responsible for Luke's death; they only shot him, as they should have. What killed Luke was drug abuse. Luke's School Teachers, Councilors, Doctors, Nurses, Friends and Family have all worked very hard for him over the years, trying to help him with his struggle. In the end, the effects of drug abuse claimed Luke's life, and shattered the lives of many wonderful, innocent people.
"FAIR WINDS AND FOLLOWING SEAS"