Va. teen’s parents say they forgive his killer

The family of 16-year-old Caleb Gordley says they forgive their neighbor for shooting and killing their son. (WTOP/Nick Iannelli)

Nick Ianelli, wtop.com

STERLING, Va. – Their son was shot and killed over the weekend. But Tuesday morning under blue skies and sunshine, the family of 16-year-old Caleb Gordley expressed acceptance and forgiveness.

“I don’t blame the gentleman,” says Jennea Gordley, adding that she forgives the shooter. “This was an accident.”

Gordley’s son was shot and killed this past weekend inside a neighbor’s home. Family members say he entered the wrong house mistakenly after a night of drinking.

He was shot by the homeowner.

“I love my son,” says Caleb’s father, Shawn Gordley. “I don’t have any tears left.”

Still, the family says they will move away from their Sterling neighborhood. They can’t stand to live on that block anymore.

Those close to the high school junior live both in the D.C. area and in Ohio, where the family has many relatives.

A “celebration” of his life will occur in both locations, according to the family.

Meanwhile, the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office is investigating, and family members say they have been less than helpful.

“Everything I’ve gotten, beyond the very little they (sheriff’s officials) have told us, has come from the media,” Shawn Gordley says.

Jennea Gordley described the department’s actions as “unfair.”

WTOP obtained a statement from the department Tuesday.

It reads, “The LCSO offers it’s condolences to the family and friends of Caleb Gordley, and continues to investigate this incident. The LCSO only disseminates accurate information to the family and to the public, as it becomes available. There is a lot of speculation and rumor in this case, and we are working on sorting out the facts. It would be irresponsible to put out information that’s not verified.”

Sheriff’s officials say they have been in regular contact with the family and will continue sharing information as the investigation comes to a close.

In the meantime, the Gordleys are just trying to stay positive.

“I got 16-and-a-half awesome years (with Caleb),” his father says. “I will hold on to that. I will hold on to those 16 years.”

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