Polk Countian, Brian C. Lathan's son was murdered in 2012. Since then he's going through a divorce, and states he's been threatened and his character has been tarnished over false allegations of spousal abuse. The divorce and slander allegedly has much to do with one of the lead investigators in his son's murder; our local Texas Ranger, Ron Duff. The following is Brian's letter that he asked be published on PolkCountyToday.com:
My name is Brian Lathan. I am the father of Rhett Lathan. My 16 year old son was murdered by Timothy Leggett on October 12, 2012. Rhett passed away on October 13th from a gunshot wound to the back of his head. This event has ruined my life. It brought people into my life that would not have been and made my life public in some ways.
I have always been a private man who kept to myself, but in November of 2013 the trial from my son's death brought a man into my home. That is the local Texas Ranger. Two days after the trial he began to call me. He gave a picture of himself for me to take to my daughter. He is a ranger in Company A and knew my daughter Brooke wanted to become a DPS Trooper. He told me and my wife, Tabitha, he will be glad to help Brooke with the recruiting process.
We left town for several days and as soon as I returned, the Ranger calls me and tells me he has something for me. I had asked the Sheriff's Office if we could have all of Rhett's belongings from evidence. The Ranger called me and delivered Rhett's belt to my home and again states that he will help Brooke. About a week later he began texting and calling my wife (over 4,000 text messages in 30 days).
In the middle of December (about 2 ½ weeks after the trial) my daughter came home from college for Christmas break. The ranger was invited to my home to eat dinner with my family and to talk to Brooke about the hiring process. At this time, he and Tabitha would be texting all day and all night on some days. As soon as Brooke passed her physical activity test he never spoke to her again. This was around Christmas.
Brooke returned to college just after the New Year, but it seems the Ranger kept visiting my home while I was at work. I have had people say they saw his Dodge truck at my home when I was not there. About two weeks later my wife started to stay out all night and within a week she moved out of our house. I have had threats made to my safety and have been told that I would lose my job. I have been a Houston Firefighter for 24 ½ years with a perfect record.
There have been lies told about me and my character, such things as I was abusive to Tabitha for years. It's amazing that I was the perfect husband (words from her mouth) until the Texas Ranger started manipulating her mind. If you have proof or police reports or anything, then show it to the world. I will not sit by and allow my family name to be slandered by people who are liars and adulterers.
An old man told me when I was young “Son, your family name is all you own in this world. Your grandfather and your father have kept it good, so it is your job to carry that on”. I have for 44 years and will not sit by quietly and allow two people to slander me and my name because of their wrong doing.
I am sorry to have to defend myself in this way, but I'm sick and tired of the lies. I sat in my home for one month while Tabitha and the Ranger carried on this inappropriate relationship before I said a word to a soul. It was all in the dark of night so nobody else could see (because the ranger was also married).
I would love to see a vote of confidence from the people of Polk and San Jacinto Counties for the public servant who is supposed to be held to a higher moral and ethical standard. I know my family has no faith in him or his honor.
Once again, I'm sorry for the trouble, but my family name means a lot to me, you see, it is all I own.
Brian C. Lathan
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