CLINTON — At 18 years old, the Goodblankets’ eldest son stood larger than most grown men: 6-foot-8 and at least 215 pounds.
And on the night of Dec. 21, a misunderstanding with his girlfriend spun Mah-hi-vist Goodblanket into a destructive fit, smashing windows and doors and knocking over the family’s Christmas tree. Melissa and Wilbur Goodblanket feared he would hurt himself, so they called 911.
The law enforcement response that followed would leave their son lifeless on the floor of their Clinton home, riddled with gunshots.
The Goodblankets’ version of events differs from a description given by Custer County Sheriff Bruce Peoples, who says his deputies were justified in shooting the young man. Two deputies, Dillon Mach and Chance Avery, are on leave while the incident is investigated, and Avery is recovering from an amputated finger — caused when he shot his hand during a struggle with the young man, Peoples said.
An investigation by the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation is underway. Once the report is submitted, the Custer County District Attorney’s office will determine if the shooting was justified. Meanwhile, the sheriff wouldn’t make public any police reports or 911 tapes regarding the incident.
The long-awaited autopsy was released on Friday, March 21, 2014, and forwarded to Custer County District Attorney Dennis Smith, who will decide if there will be any charges filed against the shooting deputies.
The Goodblankets called 911 when Mah-hi-vist, who was diagnosed with Oppostional Defiant Disorder four years ago, was experiencing an episode associated with his medical condition.
Two Custer County sheriff deputies, Avery Chance and and Dillon Mach, initially responded and entered the Goodblanket home in Clinton, Oklahoma with two Oklahoma Highway Patrol officers. Within moments of entering the home, the teen was shot to death by law enforcement officers.
The county sheriff department claims the teen threatened officers with a knife. The family disputes this account and maintains the youth was unarmed.
The autopsy report findings indicate the teen was shot seven times with wounds to his head, torso, and right upper arm. Goodblanket was also shot two times by a taser gun.