Man who drove car into Gaston Co. restaurant, killing family members pleads guilty
BESSEMER CITY, NC (WBTV) - A man accused of driving a vehicle into a Gaston County restaurant killing two and injuring multiple family members in May 2018 pleaded guilty to his charges in court Monday.
Roger Self pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree murder.
Before he was taken away, Self yelled at his family, “I love you, you’re my hero.”
Self’s sentencing has not been determined.
He entered a guilty plea under the Alford plea, which essentially means he pleads guilty without specifically admitting to the guilt itself.
Self was accused of intentionally driving his car into the Surf and Turf restaurant in Bessemer City, killing his daughter, Katelyn Self and his daughter-in-law, Amanda Self.
Self went in front of a judge on Monday, answering questions with his voice cracking while crying.
He listened out loud to details of the crash.
Many people in the courtroom, including Self’s family, were in tears.
Roger interjected -- “I didn’t mean to hurt them!” while crying.
Roger Self reportedly came into the restaurant with his family before getting up and leaving, sources say. That’s when he then allegedly drove his car into the building.
Katelyn Self was a deputy with the Gaston County Sheriff’s Office and Amanda Self worked as an ER nurse at CaroMont Regional Medical Center in Gastonia.
Amanda Self was the wife of Roger Self’s son, Gaston County Police Officer Josh Self. He was injured during the incident along with his daughter.
“Roger got up... the next thing you know he came through the window,” the family’s pastor, Austin Rammell, said.
Roger’s wife, Diane Self, was also injured while sitting at the table along with her husband's second daughter, Taylor Potter.
“It was abundantly clear that this was not an accident,” Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department’s Rob Tufano said after the incident.
Roger Self, who was previously charged with two counts of first-degree murder charges, was later served with two counts of attempted first-degree murder and two counts of assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill or inflict serious injury charges. Those charges relate to Self’s wife Diane and son, Josh.
Roger Self was emotional when he appeared in court to hear his additional charges in 2019. Family nor Self’s attorney spoke to media after the court appearance.
According to Rammell, Roger Self’s mental well-being was the contributing factor in the incident. He had reportedly started reaching out to his wife and church leaders two months prior to the tragedy with concerns of his mental state.
Ramell said Roger Self had been suffering from “severe depression and severe anxiety.”
“It was a roller coaster," said the pastor at the time of the incident. "The last few days it went from bad to really bad.”
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