Alton Nolen’s mother and sister posted a video on Facebook where they apologized to the families of victims in Nolen’s alleged attack last Thursday in Moore, Oklahoma. The two women insisted that Nolen was acting outside of his character because he believed in God and was not a violent person.
Nolen, whose Facebook page indicates that he recently converted to Islam, is accused of attacking co-workers Colleen Hufford and Traci Johnson after he was reportedly fired for “personnel issues” from a Vaughan Foods factory.
He reportedly beheaded Hufford, 54, and stabbed Johnson, 43, multiple times before being shot by reserve police officer and company CEO Mark Vaughan. There is speculation that Nolen tried to convert other co-workers to Islam.
Joyce Nolen said the descriptions of Alton in the media do not match her experiences with her son:
I know my son. My son was raised up in a loving home. My son was raised up believing in God. That’s what he believed in. My son was a good kid. You know, I know what they saying, that he dumb, But I’m gonna tell you this. That’s not my son. There’s two sides to every story, and we’re only hearing one. He is family, our hearts bleed right now. Because what they’re saying, Alton has done. I want to apologize, to both families. Because this is not Alton. But I just, I’m praying, that justice will prevail. The whole story will come out, the whole story.
Alton’s sister Megan has also turned to Facebook, where she posted about “the Alton we know. Sweet and loving!!!” She described herself and family members as “in shock”:
My brother, he’s always been a great person, a loving person. He’s always been a peoples person. He’s never been a violent person. So, for something like this to have happened… were all still in shock right now. We’re all still in shock. We just ask that everyone out there just pray for us. Keep us all in your prayers. We’re praying for both of the victims families and the victims and we just ask that everyone keep us in your prayers.
Nolen, who on Facebook goes by the name of “Jah’Keem Yisrael”, has left many wondering if his recent conversion to Islam is behind the beheading incident that took place last week.
A spokesperson from an Islamic Group in Oklahoma City said that he worshiped at the Islamic Society of Greater Oklahoma City mosque frequently and that he remembered his behavior being a “a little weird.”
Nolen has an extensive criminal record that dates back to 2003, and he was sent to prison in 2011 on drug charges and for resisting arrest.
Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin advised against jumping to conclusions on the motive for attack, according to CNN.
Breitbart Texas contributor Bob Price spoke on the phone with Joyce Nolen in her home in Idabel, Oklahoma last night.
“She sounded devastated and very sad,” Price said. “When I asked her about her son, she sadly said she has been advised not to speak to anyone but her attorney. She stayed on the phone for a few minutes but would not answer any other questions.”
Price said she did not acknowledge Alton Nolen was her son.