She Lived in FEAR and a Gun and the Police Couldn’t Protect Her

She Lived in FEAR and a Gun and the Police Couldn’t Protect Her

She Lived in FEAR and a Gun and the Police Couldn’t Protect Her

Tracy Williams was killed Sunday evening while she was at an ATM in the parking lot of a Food Lion on U.S. Highway 1 in Franklinton, NC. Her former boyfriend, Garry A. Yarborough, 35, of 306 Yellowbell Court in Zebulon, is charged with first-degree murder.

“She lived in fear,” said Tommy Branch, who was married to Williams from 1993 to 1997 and has remained friends with her. “She was crying, a nervous wreck, couldn’t sleep.”

Williams had filed numerous complaints with law enforcement about Yarborough after they split up early this year, according to police and her family and friends. In April, she sought a restraining order against him, alleging that he held a knife to her throat and repeatedly threatened to kill her, but a judge denied the protective order, despite the fact that Yarborough has a lengthy criminal record, including ties to two murders.

As a result of her fears, Williams bought a handgun and obtained a concealed carry permit to protect herself, family and friends said.

“She lived in fear,” said Tommy Branch, who was married to Williams from 1993 to 1997 and has remained friends with her. “She was crying, a nervous wreck, couldn’t sleep.”

On July 5, Yarborough was charged with second-degree kidnapping “for the purpose of terrorizing” Williams, according to an arrest warrant. Although he was on probation for a federal drug conviction at the time, he was released on a $75,000 bond.

Johnston County deputies tried to serve warrants on him six times since then, including the night before Williams was killed, but were unable to track him down.

On Sunday, witnesses said, Williams tried to defend herself when Yarborough approached her, getting off one shot before he chased her down and shot her in the face.

Branch asked Wednesday why Yarborough wasn’t in custody.

Franklinton Police Chief John Green said the case is an example of a system in desperate need of repair.

“It just seemed like he fell through the cracks,” Green said of Yarborough. “The system is not perfect. We play within the system, and unfortunately, if he made bond every time he was charged, that’s why he was out on the street.”

Yarborough, who Green said is still under investigation in the theft of $11,000 from Williams’ bank account this month and in connection with the hacking of her phone, is now being held in Central Prison without bond.

Branch said locking up Yarborough doesn’t mean a thing to other domestic violence victims. “Going downtown and filling out a sheet of paper is not enough. There needs to be stiffer laws,” he said.

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What did we learn? 

The system fails – a lot. To be honest, it’s not designed to offer 24-7 protection. Imagine if there was a cop on every corner people would complain that we’re living in Nazi Germany. In order to enjoy some freedom you need to be responsible for your own safety. 

You can file all the restraining orders you want – you still have to wait for the cavalry to arrive and even so, the police are still not compelled to protect you. 

Restraining orders are just paper. In the case Castle Rock v Gonzales  the wife, Jessica Gonzales, had a permanent restraining order against her ex-husband. Against her wishes, the ex-husband took their 3 daughters one day to the amusement park. Jessica Gonzales went to the police station several times to get the police to enforce the restraining order. Since the police knew the Gonzales situation and she frequently let her ex-husband take the kids from time to time in spite of the restraining order, the local cops didn’t respond. Add to the fact that the ex-husband reportedly took the kids out of the jurisdiction nothing was done. Later that day the ex-husband was killed during a shootout with police and the bodies of they three daughters were found in his car. 

Gonzales sued and after several appeals the supreme court ruled that “The Court’s majority opinion by Justice Antonin Scalia held that enforcement of the restraining order was not mandatory under Colorado law; were a mandate for enforcement to exist, it would not create an individual right to enforcement that could be considered a protected entitlement under the precedent of Board of Regents of State Colleges v. Roth; and even if there were a protected individual entitlement to enforcement of a restraining order, such entitlement would have no monetary value and hence would not count as property for the Due Process Clause.”

In short – when it comes to your personal protection…you’re on your own. 

Owning a gun IS NOT ENOUGH. 

Guns are the “self defense magic pill.” Gun owners and the majority of conceal carry advocates will tell you that owning a gun will solve all of your self defense problems. THIS IS A LIE. 

Gun manufactures tell you that all you need is a gun. WHY? To sell more guns!! (Go figure). The NRA (of which I am a member and so is the Self Defense Company) perpetuates this lie. 

Why? TO SELL GUNS and support their life style. 

A gun is a SMALL part of the self defense solution and the chances of you actually using one for self defense are remote. The truth is, conceal carry courses in most states only cover the most basic gun and range safety. In order to get any real tactical training you need to go out of your pocket and out of your way and even then – no time is spent on real weapon retention, learning how to create enough space to effectively draw and fire your weapon. 

And even if you hit your target, that doesn’t mean they’re down. 

In this case Tracy shot him in the leg and he kept coming. 

Does anyone remember this video?

Cop emptied his gun into the subject and he JUST KEPT COMING! I’m sure every time this officer fired his weapon in training he thought every bullet that hit it’s target would do it’s job. I know every person who goes to the range thinks the same thing. A firearm is no guarantee of success. 

When all is said and done, it’s up to YOU to protect yourself. The law allows you to do so. You have a right to protect yourself, others and even your property. The police can’t be everywhere and they’re not supposed to be. The court is slow and difficult to work through. Multiple felons are allowed to roam free as long as they can pay the freight on their bond.

Why do people still resist the need to know how to defend themselves properly?

Because they think it’s like training for a prize fight or joining martial arts and that couldn’t be farther from the truth. The self defense training that we teach is no more difficult than driving to the range and shooting a few targets, the only difference is you’re going to have to hit something and that may cause your heart rate to increase :).

Be smart, cover your bases and take the time educate yourself on all aspects of personal protection. It’s YOUR responsibility. Not the cops, not the courts and not GLOCK.

Until Next Time…

Train Honestly,




Published by theselfdefenseco

Founder, The Self Defense Company

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  1. Someone once said, “When the moment of truth has arrived, the time for preparation has passed.”  Thank you Damian for preparing us!

  2. This is just one more reason I’m proud to be an Elite Member of The Self Defense Company & Training with True Self Defense Lessons that are Truly What Everyone needs to be able to Protect Not only Ourselves but our Family, Friends & Even Our Communities. Thank You Very Much Damian Ross & The Self Defense Company For Absolutely Having A True 5 Star Self Defense Training Program like yours.
    Alex Storm

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