Late at night on Santa Clara Drive, back in 2007, Carter Albrecht wasn't acting like himself, his girlfriend would tell reporters afterward. Albrecht, a popular local musician who played in Sorta and Edie Brickell & New Bohemians, had been taking Chantix, the controversial smoking-cessation drug, and was drunk. He became violent with his girlfriend, she told police later, behavior that she and his friends said was completely uncharacteristic. She let him chase her out of her house that night and then ran back inside, police said, shutting the door behind her. Locked out of his girlfriend's house, Albrecht began banging and kicking at the door of the couple who lived next door.
The neighbor was identified in news reports afterward as Bill Logg. Hearing the noise, he brought a handgun downstairs, told Albrecht to go away and fired one shot through the shut door, striking Albrecht in the head and killing him.
Now, Will Logg, as he calls himself in campaign materials, is running for Dallas City Council. Logg is one of
four five candidates vying for District 9, encompassing Lakewood. He's incredibly unlikely to win, but the fact that he's able to run for public office is a quirk of American gun laws and Texas politics.
Police told reporters after the shooting that Logg feared that Albrecht was trying to break in. He was never charged with a crime. The case brought national scrutiny to Chantix, the drug that friends blamed for Albrecht's bizarre behavior that night, and to the gun laws in Texas that protected Logg's right to kill Albrecht. A 2007 New York Times story about the shooting explains:
Texas has protected the right to "stand your ground" and use deadly force to protect oneself at home without first trying to retreat since 1995. And a law that took effect on Saturday expanded that so-called "castle doctrine" to apply to public spaces. The law also expanded civil immunity and could make it more difficult for the Albrecht family or relatives of those killed in similar incidents in Texas to win a wrongful-death suit, said James Dark, executive director of the Texas State Rifle Association, which lobbied for the new law.
Logg's campaign biography understandably doesn't mention the death of Albrecht. On his website, he takes credit for stopping a community garden project from opening near his house, on White Rock Methodist Church property. "I organized my neighbors into circulating petitions, constructing and displaying, 'No Garden' signs all over the neighborhood," he writes. Eventually, the church agreed to move the garden, "with their mountain range of mulch from the parking lot, to the NE side of the Church ensuring adequate parking for both church congregations."
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Logg didn't return messages and his wife said he was out of town on Wednesday. But he did find time to send a long email to Jim Schutze and the Observer editors, saying that reporters from The Dallas Morning News and The Advocate both asked him about the shooting weeks ago but decided not to write about it. Logg points out that he is a long-shot candidate, vastly out-funded by the three others in the race. He expresses remorse for "accidentaly[sic] taking of a human life" and blames the shooting and my attention to it to Albrecht's girlfriend Ryann Rathborne (though she never contacted me or tipped me off for this story):
Now that Amy Silversteen has been calling for a last minute interview for next weeks issue, I can only assume this interview has positive traction propelled by Ryan Rathbone; not unlike the last Rathbone dictated, salacious and uncorroborated character assassination published eight years ago by the Dallas Observer. Especially disappointing in that I had been an employee of Dallas Observer for five years, and would have picked up the phone to grant an interview. Jim, if you had called weeks ago, I would have granted a face to face interview.
Logg appears to be referencing the Observer stories about the shooting from 2007.
Send your story tips to the author, Amy Silverstein.