William Bryars, 17, attacked his mother on Tuesday, January 17, and then proceeded to drive away in their Nissan Altima. That’s what the media released to the public; just straight facts. What the press and public aren’t aware of is the events leading up to this event, or William’s, also known as Billy to friends, side of the story.

Being a friend of Billy’s, I was at a loss for words after reading the article that was released Wednesday morning. I was in utter shock, and I just couldn’t believe someone I call a friend was capable of something like this incident. But, my mind quickly drifted off to many other questions: Where is he? Is he okay? What will happen to him? The entire situation seemed surreal.

I have realized the media doesn’t show the back story. The public has been quick to portray Billy as this horrible child, who was considered dangerous and unapproachable. What they don’t know is the relationship between Billy and his mother prior to this event, and Billy’s home life. Not to make excuses for the situation, but there is so much background information that the public doesn’t know, yet they are so quick to judge and voice their opinions. The comments on KVUE’s article are absolutely horrible. I was filled with anger reading comments from people who don’t know Billy voicing what they wished would happen to him.

In a high school setting, people are making jokes and posting memes that students have created. Not just students though are using this incident as a way to entertain themselves. Before this, I would have probably just brushed what other people say off my shoulder, but now, having a personal connection to the suspect, my eyes have been opened. People are so quick to share what they think, even though they’re completely unaware of the other side of the story. I keep holding onto the fact that there are always three sides to every story, which in this case is Billy’s mother, Bryar’s side, and the truth. I just hope that the public realizes that Billy Bryars isn’t a monster, and he has amazing qualities, as well. He needs a support system through this, even though it is difficult. I am asking that the negative comments come to a minimum, because the people that have been posting them lack information on the situation. This experience has made me realize to be cautious about word choice, and that there is always another side that is often not shown.

Written by Camryn Horst

Staff Writer