The ex-wife of the Kansas City homeowner charged in the shooting of Ralph Yarl, a 16-year-old Black teenager who accidentally went to his home, has shed light on her former husband's alleged history of rage and violence.
Mary Clayton, who was formerly married to shooter Andrew Lester, said she hasn't spoken to him in decades but wasn't surprised that he shot Yarl.
“I was always scared of him. It doesn’t surprise me what happened,” Clayton, who shares three children with Lester, told the New York Times.
Clayton recalled Lester's tendency to erupt in anger and fits of rage. During their marriage, Lester would smash items in their home when he got angry, Clayton said, adding that police told her that he could do whatever he wanted in his residence.
Yarl mistakenly went to the wrong address to pick up his siblings earlier this month when he was shot twice by Lester, an 84-year-old white homeowner. Lester was charged last week with assault in the first degree and armed criminal action in Yarl's shooting.
He surrendered and was taken into custody at a detention center on Tuesday (April 18) before being released on a $200,000 bond hours later.
Lester told police that he shot Yarl because he thought the teen was trying to break into his home and he was “scared to death."
According to his grandson, Klint Ludwig, Lester has a history of making “racist comments” and an interest in “QAnon-level conspiracy theories." Ludwig said he became estranged from his grandfather due to his right-wing conspiracy theories, per the New York Times.
“I believe he holds racist tendencies and beliefs,” Ludwig said of his grandfather, adding that he has bought into “conspiracies and weird random, racist things."
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