By Amy Silverman
By Olivia LaVecchia
By Monica Alonzo and Stephen Lemons
By Chris Parker
By Michael Lacey
By Weston Phippen
Well, I wouldn't know that. I'm just an average sissy like anybody else, but then, bullets are just as good at piercing average sissies as they are tough guys.
"I'm an ex-Vietnam Marine, I'm an ex-biker. Who in their right fuckin' mind is going to go up against me?" Bob admits to thinking. Ah, but the answer was standing right there with lizard eyes and a finger on a trigger just seconds away from pulling. "I don't get a scratch in 15 months in Vietnam, and I'm actually gonna die at the hands of a 15-year-old," he says, shaking his stubbly head.
"I leaned back, and the world went white. Never heard the gun go off, never felt a thing. The world just went the most brilliant white I've ever seen in all my 39 years. White like I'd expect God's robe to look like. And I went blind. Apparently, it flipped me between the bucket seats, but when it hit me, I was shifting and flooring it."
Blind and upside down, Bob drove--rode, rather--the truck about 70 feet onto 48th Street and crashed into a median sign.
"Next thing I remember was thinking I heard them get in the truck. All I could think to say was, 'Don't shoot me, I'm blind, just kick me out of the truck.' And I said it just like that. I wasn't scared, and I wasn't brave. I was just kind of neutral."
But there was nobody there to hear him. According to a witness statement in the police report, "the suspects fled on foot."
Meanwhile, Bob was going somewhere, too, somewhere in the inner sanctum of his bullet-damaged brain. "In the time from when I thought they got in the truck from when I got shot was probably a minute and a half, maybe. I don't know, it could have been 30 seconds. I wasn't on this planet. I don't know where I was, but it wasn't hot, and it wasn't cold, and if I would have had my choice, I wouldn't have come back. It was that comfortable. No white light at the end of the tunnel, no flashing in front of my eyes of all the bullshit I did in my lifetime."
"The next thing I remember is my sight started coming back, and there's a Mexican lady--she turned out to be a nurse--leaning over me yelling at the attendant, 'Bring more towels.' Windshield-wiper towels, that's all they had. And I remember her yelling for him to dial 911.
"She and her husband were coming home from something at 3:30 in the morning, and her husband thought I was a drunk who had crashed his car, and he didn't want to stop. And apparently she saw the blood pouring down my face, and she made her husband stop the car.
"I kept trying to stand back up. I think what I wanted to do was see if I could find the kid. She said, 'You've been shot in the head, just lay back and relax if you can.' I had no problem with that, but I had to keep talking. As long as I could hear my own voice, I was alive."
Bob is a talkative guy. Even with a bullet wound, he liked to talk, and he says he told the cops plenty when they showed up.
"Oh, yeah! They had quick response time, I'll give 'em that. There was a helicopter flying overhead, and I know that I looked at four different cops' faces and told them there was one black kid that asked me for a dollar and one Mexican kid that shot me, and I described the gun."
The police got him to Maricopa Medical Center, where Bob continued to talk. An Officer Britt states in the police report that "Dr. Susan Gin-Shaw told me that [he] was in the emergency room as he was being prepared for more x-rays, and I could speak with him if I wished. He was very coherent and talkative." Dr. Gin-Shaw also told the officer that Bob had "suffered one gunshot wound to the upper part of his forehead. She stated that the x-rays showed that the bullet did not penetrate his skull, but had lodged in his head underneath his scalp."
Here is where, according to Bob, things start to get weird.
"Dr. Susan Gin-Shaw? I never saw a female doctor to my knowledge, and I never had an x-ray taken. I had an MRI done. And I was conscious from the scene to surgery."
In the narrative portion of his report, Officer Britt also states that Bob described his attackers as "a black male, approx. 5'6"-5'8", about 125 pounds. He estimated this person's age at 17-18 years. The second suspect he described as a black male or, possibly, Hispanic, 5'6"-5'8", 160-170 pounds."
Yet on the first page of the police report, which is supposed to provide a quick summary of the case, the suspects are both listed as definitely black, both become 23-26 years old and both grow to six feet tall. One weighs in at 210 pounds, the other at 225, for a tag-team weight gain of some 140 pounds.