My impact statement as I wrote it.

  My name is Debbie Wiley and I am the mother of Phillip Ray Dover.

On February 18, 1967, my son was placed in my arms for the first time, just minutes after he took his first breath. He was so precious, his face so flawless, his skin so soft and I whispered I love you son for the first time.

On October 19, 1998, I was led to a cold table where my beautiful son lay, this time his facewas not flawless, his skin was not soft only cold very cold. And I whispered I love you son for the last time.

I’ve tried to find the words to tell you how Phillip’s murder has impacted my life, but there are no adequate words to describe the pain, anger and despair that I’ve felt from his murder. Phillip’s murder took everything from me. It took my security and my innocence; it took my rest and my peace. I have lost my faith and trust in people. I have trouble finding joy in the simple pleasures of life. Being “happy” doesn’t seem “right” anymore. Sometimes the feeling of despair becomes so overwhelming, so oppressive, that it literally takes my breath away. I never know what sound or what sight is going to trigger in my mind a memory. And while the memories of Phillip are so sweet, with them comes the realization that he is gone.And each time that realization hits my heart it is devastating.

Phillip was my son, my firstborn son and he did not deserve to be so cruelly taken. I do not deserve to have to live the rest of my life with this pain and without my child.  

Phillip was a loving, giving young man with a heart as big as the world. His murder took a father, son, brother, grandson, nephew, cousin and friend who was greatly loved. In the last four years I have watched as my family has struggled with their pain, anger and grief. I’ve watched as Phillip’s youngest brother and his wife have a son with out his big brother there to be part of the joy. Phillip should be here to be the doting uncle for his new nephew. I’ve watched as my other son struggled with the joy of being able to escort Phillip’s daughter to the Miss Teenage Pageant, but the pain of knowing the reason her father was not there. I’ve watched as my husband struggles with the anger he feels from the lack of justice that put Timothy Carl Dawson back on the street when he should have still been in jail. This man takes our Phillip’s life and we can do nothing but wait. Timothy Carl Dawson took from my granddaughters a loving father and friend, since their father’s death they’ve had emotional problems which have resulted with problems in school and problems in family life. Their world has been shattered; they have lost some of their innocence. They are now painfully aware that there is violence and evil in this world.  

Phillip had a good job that he enjoyed and was doing very well, he was 31 and talking of buying a house and getting ready to fight the young guys away from his twin daughters. His life was finally coming together as he wanted. He used to say “now if I could just find a good woman that would put up with me I would be totally happy”. But I will never get to meet that daughter in law, never get to share in their joy of having children. Phillip will never see his daughters graduate from school, get married or be there at the birth of his grandchildren. What the future would have held for Phillip is unknown, he may never have made a bigger impact on this world that he had at the time of his death, that we will never know, but to the people who know and love Phillip the impact he made on our lives is immeasurable and we cry out at the injustice caused by this man.   Phillip was a good, honest man. He would give you his last dollar if you needed it. He was compassionate, caring and loving. He cared about people. He never judged anyone because of the color of their skin, religion or bank account. Phillip has so many friends who miss him terribly.

Phillip enjoyed life, and he enjoyed living life, he enjoyed the outdoors, hunting, fishing, but his passion was reading and sports. His favorite sport was football. It was his passion for football that led him to the Hilton Hotel on October 18, 1998. But most of all Phillip loved LIFE.   What has kept me focused since Phillip’s murder is the promise I made to my son when I saw him laid out on that cold table at the funeral home. I promised him that whomever did this to him would pay and now I pass that promise on to you. It is up to the court to decide Timothy Dawson’s sentence and although there will never be justice for Phillip, I beg of the court for Phillip’s sake, for his family, and for myself, to give Timothy Dawson the same leniency that he gave my son.


This is my impact statement after being edited by the court.  Read before the court on November 15, 2002.
 

Victim Impact Statement of Debbie Wiley

My name is Debbie Wiley and I am the mother of Phillip Ray Dover. Phillip’s murder took everything from me—my security and my innocence, my rest and peace. I have lost my faith and trust in people. Being happy doesn’t seen right anymore.I have sleepless nights, nightmares, and night terrors, and I struggle each day to find a reason.

When Phillip was murdered, we lost a loving father, son, brother, grandson, nephew, cousin and friend who was greatly loved. In the last four years, I have watched my family struggle with pain, anger and grief. Phillip’s girls suffered emotional problems which affected them in school and in their family life. Their world has been shattered, they have lost some of their innocence. Phillip had a good job that he enjoyed and was doing very well; he was 31 and talking of buying a house and getting ready to fight the young guys away from his twin daughters.His life was finally coming together. He used to say “now if I could just find a good woman to put up with me, I would be totally happy”.

Phillip had a heart as big as the world.. He would give you his last dollar if you needed it. He was compassionate, caring and loving. He never judged anyone because of  the color of their skin, religion or bank account. Phillip has so many friends who miss him terribly. But Most of all, MY SON loved life. ~
 
This is all they allowed me to read, our statements were edited and we were given the above statement that we read in court.

Before we were allowed to read our impact statement, the jury was told they were court approved statements. I wonder if the verdict would have been different if all the families had been allowed to give their impact statement as they wrote them instead of the court’s version. The Defendant’s family members were allowed to beg and plead for his life even though none had seen him in the last four years since he had been in jail and some had not seen him since he was twelve.  These people only knew the boy they did not know the monster the boy had become. They begged the jury that if he was just given life they would visit him and take their children to visit.  I wonder did the jury notice that the day the "family" testified was the only time they were in court and as soon as they were paid they were gone, did not even make it through the afternoon session. We were not allowed to say anything that might influence the jury we were not allowed to beg and plead for death for this defendant. This man was convicted of killing four people and evidence tied him to another murder in a different county. His abuse of women alone should have been enough for the Jury to give a  life sentence. But to kill five people and beat and violate women in the way he did cried out for the death penalty. The first question the jury asked during the deliberation of  the sentencing phase was: Were the families of the victims allowed to state what verdict they wanted? And of course the court had to respond with NO.

We learned very quickly that the Defendant has all the rights in court.