BETHEL ACRES — Pottawatomie County authorities didn't know a second Bethel Acres resident was with Kenneth Chaffin, 17, when they issued a report Wednesday that Chaffin was missing and should be considered armed and dangerous.
“We didn't actually know there was a second one until we got the call from Ellis County, Texas, that two suspects were killed,” Pottawatomie County Undersheriff J.T. Palmer said.
Dillian King, 18, and Chaffin died Wednesday of gunshot wounds after a failed armed robbery attempt near Maypearl, Texas, authorities said.
Chaffin was reported missing after his parents told police some of their firearms, ammunition, money and a pickup were taken from their house Monday. King lived about a mile away.
“I wish I knew what his mindset was,” Dillian King's stepmother, Tosha King, said. “I think he was still lost at the time, and once things got bad in the situation, maybe he didn't feel like there was another option.”
Tosha King said her stepson had fallen in with the wrong crowd when he was younger — and once was arrested — but his family had hoped he was getting past that.
“He was kind of misunderstood. He always got into mischief,” Tosha King said. “He's very smart, and that's what killed me. He had so much potential. His test scores were phenomenal. He was always above average, without even trying. I just think he was one of those kids who didn't fit in.”
Dillian King wanted to follow in his grandfather's footsteps and serve in the military, but he was rejected because of a medical condition. While he had a troubled youth, Dillian King was very close with his family and was a caring person, she said.
According to Dillian King's Facebook page, he graduated from Bethel High School in May.
Chaffin had a history of running away, Palmer said.
The two were attempting to break into a home on a Texas ranch when the homeowner got a gun and fired at them, authorities in Texas said. The robbers fired back at the house as they ran. They were found dead with apparent self-inflicted gunshot wounds.
The pickup reportedly taken by Chaffin was at the scene.
Roland Chaffin said his son never had any run-ins with the law.
“Kenneth was a follower, not a leader. That's what we figure. He followed someone and got in over his head,” Roland Chaffin said.
Contributing: Associated Press
I wish I knew what his mindset was. I think he was still lost at the time, and once things got bad in the situation, maybe he didn't feel like there was another option.”
Dillian King's stepmother