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June 17th, 2013
10:25 PM ET

Mother alerted authorities of mentally ill son's assault weapon purchase: "I had to do what I did as a mother to save my son"

Roughly seven months since making an imaginably difficult decision, on Monday evening Piers Morgan invited Bill and Tricia Lammers to offer their unique, first-hand perspective on guns and mental health.

Last November, the Lammers' son Blaec was arrested, and presently faces three felony counts: first degree assault, making a terrorist threat, and armed criminal action. And it was Bill and Tricia that alerted authorities.

Fearful their son would take his own life – or harm others – after discovering a receipt for an assault weapon, the Lammers made the only choice they could:

"Our intention was not to go have Blake arrested. Our intention was to warn the local authorities that our son, who everybody knew, because he'd been in and out of the hospital several times, now has an AR-15 in his possession," Bill explained to the "Piers Morgan Live" host. "We didn't know that he was going to be picked up and the confession and the plot that he had told the detective, we didn't know anything about that, we just wanted to warn the authorities that we thought it was unsafe for our son to have this weapon out in the community."

Despite suffering from depression for many years, Blaec never received a clear diagnosis. The day she spoke up about her son, Tricia's only goal was to protect him:

"In 2009 he wrote a letter saying that he was sorry that he was a failure, and sorry to disappoint us, and he went to Walmart because he wanted the police to shoot him, because he didn't want to live any more," she told Morgan. "When you find a receipt that your son has bought a weapon, the first thing you think is, your son is going to take his life. So, I went to the authorities, because I didn't want to lose my son. And heaven forbid, I didn't want my son to hurt anybody in the process of him taking his life, and I do believe that was his intention, is my son wanted to die. So I had to do what I did as a mother to save my son."

For Blaec's dad, the message for any family dealing with mental health is simple: "Don't hide it."

"I would say [to] every other parent, if you see the warning signs in your child, and they have access to weapons, something needs to be done," said Bill. "Step up and do the right thing, don't just sit back and turn the other cheek and let it happen."

Watch the clip for more of Morgan's interview with Bill and Tricia Lammers, and for the next edition of "Piers Morgan Live," watch CNN every night at 9.
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soundoff (30 Responses)
  1. eric ploeg

    If "the right to bear arms" isn't restricted, why can't I have a tank? Why not a missile? I think our forefathers didn't have the weapons of today in mind. Who decides what is reasonable?

    June 18, 2013 at 12:15 am | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Joe

    No laws have to change! law enforcement just needs to stop being lazy and enter any 5150 they deal with into there local data base so that kinda stuff will be found during a back ground check. Also when they serve any restraining orders they need to check and see if the person named on the restraining order has any weapons registered to him so they can confiscate them when they serve the order!

    June 18, 2013 at 12:22 am | Report abuse | Reply
  3. sandangel

    Kudos to these parents! I would have no hesitation at all to do the same thing if I were faced with the same situation. What's sad is that many parents do and have turned their cheek to signs of possible danger from their kids because they are in denial that their child could behave in anyway but perfect in their eyes. Such behavior and responses like that from parents are dire serious issues that usually result in harm one way or the other.

    June 18, 2013 at 12:27 am | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Sharon

    Thank you for not letting the stereo type of mental health prevent you from acting in everyones best interest.
    Most people would rather hide their sons mental health for the sake of their own embarassment than make the hard choices that they made.
    Thank you to both the Lemmer's and CNN for making this a human story!

    June 18, 2013 at 12:27 am | Report abuse | Reply
  5. BETH

    I agree with what these poor people did for their son...And i used to enjoy watching Piers all the time but He has to remember to allow people to answer a question before he interrupts them every single time!..He did this during this entire interview!,,Watch it Piers and you'll see what I mean..

    June 18, 2013 at 12:34 am | Report abuse | Reply
  6. Jeri

    What courageous and wonderful parents! My heart goes out to them but they are right to be thankful their son is alive.

    June 18, 2013 at 12:39 am | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Doug

    A thumbs up to the parents for being aware enough to recognize a potential problem before it escalated to the next level and either he or others were hurt or killed. Note to you Piers and hope you read this. Quit calling them Assault Weapons!! It gives the gun nuts an arguing point every time you interview them. It is not an assault weapon but is instead a lookalike designed to look like an M-16 that is not fully automatic. My Ruger 10-22 will fire rounds just as fast as the AR-15, can be equally deadly, and big banana clips can be purchased that will hold up to 50 rounds. Just because it looks like an assault rifle does not mean that it is and it just gives the pro-gun crowd leverage to make their argument more valid against your very valid point. Call it a semi-auto weapon or military style weapon or something but quit using the Assault Rifle terminology!! One more thing... Sorry. Background checks A-OK. Mental health background checks ok. Need to enforce though. How about a longer waiting period to allow purchase of any weapon period. Currently, if you want to purchase a firearm, the wait time is limited to the background check wait which is about 3-4 hours. How about extending that time to 4 days. Would not eliminate all problems of course but would help with impulse buyers that "just want a gun right now" and give them a time period to think about the purchase and "why" they are buying the gun in the first place. Call it a "cooling off" period. Not denying the purchase but just taking a bit longer to get the weapon.

    June 18, 2013 at 1:30 am | Report abuse | Reply
  8. WorldCares.

    I feel for those parents, but why, has he not been diagnosed?
    My Autistic son is 27 and he was diagnosed at age 2 1/2.

    June 18, 2013 at 1:48 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • sandangel

      According to what the parents stated in the interview their son has been diagnosed but he has been to more than one professional and he has been diagnosed differently from time to time. That has to be extremely frustrating for both the parents and their son. Besides different opinions from mental health professionals, it has also been difficult finding the best suited medications and doses in order to best help his mental state to stabilize his condition. Unfortunately, finding the best combinations of medication plus the best doses to prescribe can be challenging in many cases, especially in mental care. This is not uncommon.

      My thoughts and prayers to the parents and their son.

      June 18, 2013 at 2:34 am | Report abuse | Reply
      • worldcares

        My heart is with the parents. They did the right thing.

        June 19, 2013 at 1:31 am | Report abuse |
      • worldcares

        I agree.

        June 19, 2013 at 1:36 am | Report abuse |
      • Mark

        After doing some searching through the blog for Piers, I find that your handle seems to be on here very frequently! Any of the ones I decided to read you are towing the line with Piers. As you replied to Terry that everyone has their views, why is it that you feel the need to shoot off? I also noticed that you use the caps a lot in your posts. I did not take anything Terry said as an attack on Piers. As for the part of Piers, leaving the US, I just happened to be watching that night and he did promise to leave if nothing was passed on a second try! Just because someone wants to point out their own view or opinion does not mean that they're looking for a confrontation. As for the attack point, we all have someone that we have a distaste for! Piers brings a lot of these comments on himself because even I become a little turned off by some of his interviews and wish it would stay on point and give guests a chance to answer, and not try to talk over them and call them names.

        June 21, 2013 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
      • sandangel

        For whatever reason Mark, I guess you have taken it upon yourself to monitor my posts here. Whatever makes you happy. I never disputed in my posts that Mr. Morgan did not say he would move. I happened to not see that episode and rarely take the time to watch his shows. Why does it bother you that I agree with Piers (in my postings that YOU decided to read? No need to answer because I don't care what your answer is regardless.

        As far as "shooting off" as you put it..... of course I will respond in all caps and take offense when someone iinsinuates that I have my head up anyone's butt.

        June 22, 2013 at 4:01 am | Report abuse |
  9. Roger in the Philippines

    Piers Morgan's interview with the Lammers was 12 minutes too long (even if it was only 11 minutes) and so became pathetic and embarrassing to all concerned. We get it: Guns in the wrong hands are A BAD THING. This doesn't need to be repeated 9 times in an interview. Memo to Piers and CNN: enacting legislation to manage a complex society is complex, time-consuming, and difficult. Numerous other countries have widespread gun ownership, and yet USA-style massacres by "loners" rarely occur.

    June 18, 2013 at 6:50 am | Report abuse | Reply
  10. lady d

    I conmend the parents for what they was encourage to do regarding there son, they have probably ssave many lives and their son, even though it don't look good now I believe good will come out of it, their son now can and will get the best of care now. I believe that not only with them if mothers that know there children are out there killing start turning them in maybe there will be chang in the numbers of murders

    June 18, 2013 at 10:56 am | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Terry

    I applaud the family that turned in their son. Unfortunately, background checks will not find out who has mental issues! I keep repeating that here! Their names should be on the list, just saying that they are not allowed to purchase any weapons or ammunition, etc., the same as people with felony records should have their name on the list, but it does not have to say why they can't purchase, just that they are not allowed to! If you put their names on the list and say that they are mentally unstable, then that is another set of people that do not need to know this type of information. It should only be between a doctor and the family! Still today, people with felony convictions are able to get their hands on firearms that are not obviously legal. As far as your continual rant about the 223 assault weapon, the same caliber of weapon is available to the public and does not resemble the firearm you continually show. The CEO of McDonald's should sue your ass to oblivion for your comments regarding his company! When does it that society should be responsible for themselves? As far as the drink ban in New York you keep forgetting that they can go to the nearest 711 and get any size they wish! Politicians should learn to police themselves first before they start making rules about the taxpaying public! By the way, Mr. Morgan, why are you still in the US?

    June 18, 2013 at 1:27 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • sandangel

      quote: By the way, Mr. Morgan, why are you still in the US?


      Since you apparently don't like what Mr. Morgan talks about on his program, why don't you stop watching? And regarding the backround checks, I have never heard Piers Morgan say that backround checks alone will solve the gun violence problem. It simply is only one component that will help.

      June 18, 2013 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse | Reply
      • Terry

        Not that it is any of your business why I watch, but I make sure I get the preview so I know when he is going to pull his usual BS. He keeps going on and on about at least getting background checks passed, so he obviously thinks that this is actually going to help. And when you answer " it is simply only one component that will help," you wonder why the NRA and gun owners are afraid of what will come down the pipeline next! If you weren't so busy on here, continually kissing his behind, maybe they would actually get somebody to do interviews asking serious questions and letting their guests answer without trying to talk over them. Keep agreeing with him and somewhere down the road he will be trying to promote something that you may not be happy about. Just enforce the existing laws as they are written already, it will not stop those committed to creating havoc, but it is better than writing new laws that still will not be enforced properly! Mr. Morgan also promised that if nothing got past the second time in Congress that he would leave the US, or is your head too far up his butt to remember this?

        June 18, 2013 at 11:57 pm | Report abuse |
      • sandangel

        So I take it that this is one of your designated jobs to monitor Piers Morgan. Okay, whatever, makes me no difference. However each and every person, including you, including Piers and everyone else under the sun has a right to voice their own opinions. To summarize what has happened here....... Piers Morgan has his views, you have your views and I have my views. I simply wondered why someone, like yourself, that has such distaste for Mr. Morgan would waste their time keeping track of him. Some people like to attack and feed off of confrontations with others. To each their own.

        You do make a good point about enforcing the laws that are already in place. I guess if some politicians in Washington would wake up and pay attention to what us Americans want and need, maybe something would get done.

        As far as your assumption that I agree with Piers Morgan on everything is off base. I have a busy life and don't follow anyone on twitter, facebook, etc. Nor do I circle my life around watching TV every single day. So I have no idea if I agree with Mr. Morgan on all his views. Chances are, I doubt it. Now in closing I will answer your question. MY HEAD IS NOT UP HIS BUTT, PERIOD!

        June 19, 2013 at 2:18 am | Report abuse |
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