Retired Man Falls Victim of Online Scheme: Robert Vick Story
Robert Gene Vick was a retired executive that was once employed with Lone Star Airlines. Robert Gene Vick would be found dead on March 22, 1997. Robert was only 65 years old at the time of his death.
About Robert Gene Vick
Robert Gene Vick loved flying and anything to do with airplanes. Robert Gene Vick came into this world on February 6, 1932. He was born in Youngsport, Texas, but Robert officially grew up in Killeen, Texas.
Robert would go on to further his education at the Texas A&M University. Robert would ultimately spend his adult years living in Abilene and worked for the Chaparral Airlines. Robert was a 32nd Degree Mason.
Robert loved to help anyone and everyone he could possibly lend a hand to. He would help anyone that needed a helping hand, if he was able to.
Robert Gene Vick lived alone in the last few years of his life. Robert was last seen on March 21, 1997, around 6 pm by a family member who lived in the home right next door.
Robert’s dead body would be located right before 9 am on March 22, 1997. Robert’s dead body was near his safe. Robert’s safe was also found to be open as well.
It appeared that Robert was killed due to many gunshots to the head and the face. Robert’s front door to his residence was found to be unlocked as well. The local investigators also found that there was no sign of a struggle. So, it would have appeared that Robert Gene Vick might have knew his attacker.
A neighbor to Robert would tell the local authorities that they heard what they thought to be a car backfiring near 11 pm on March 21, 1997. However, then there were other neighbors that told the local authorities that they saw a small, dark in color pickup truck in front of Robert’s home on the evening of March 21, 1997.
Now, let’s take a moment to figure out how did Robert Gene Vick get into this predicament where he would ultimately end up deceased.
Just a few months prior to Robert’s death, Robert would start communicating over the internet to a woman. Now, he only started talking to this woman just two months before he would be found dead.
Robert’s family would warn him against getting involved with this woman that he has never met before. But, since Robert was of the older generation, Robert was trusting, so he did not heed the warning from his family members. The women that Robert was conversing with was only 34 years old, keep in mind at the time Robert was 65 years old.
Robert would soon invite this internet woman to his home. This internet women would bring along Scotty Gottleib Arnst with her when she went to Robert’s home in Texas.
Scotty Gottleib Arnst was 19 currently. Scotty Gottleib Arnst would be introduced to Robert as the woman’s son. But, let’s be very clear here Scotty Gottleib Arnst was NOT the woman’s son, he was a friend of her son who was currently living with them for five months prior.
What Robert did not know about Scotty Gottleib Arnst was that he had a pretty lengthy criminal record, which included many drug and weapons charges.
Robert as we already have previously stated was very trusting to everyone that he met. Robert would end up making a huge mistake with this internet woman.
When the internet women came over to Robert’s house, she asked him if she could cash a payroll check. Of course, with Robert being as trusting as he was, he agreed. He went into his safe and he had an envelope full of one-hundred-dollar bills. This was Robert’s first mistake allowing the internet woman and Scotty Gottleib Arnst see this type of money.
After the internet woman and Scotty Gottleib Arnst left that first day, Scotty Gottleib Arnst would continue going back to Robert’s house to not only continuing gaining Robert’s trust, but also to become familiar with the house’s layout and how the safe operation.
In the aftermath of Robert’s death, this internet woman would be contacted by Robert’s family. Then this internet woman would get in touch with local investigators to report to them that she was the one who took Scotty Gottleib Arnst to Robert’s home some time back.
She would go on to announce that Scotty Gottleib Arnst had a pickup truck that was just like the one that was reported to be seen in front of Robert’s home during the evening hours when Robert would have been murdered.
She would go on to explain that Scotty Gottleib Arnst would leave her home a little bit after Robert’s death and how Scotty Gottleib Arnst would try to get in contact with her a few times before and after she talked to investigators.
However, the internet woman did say that Scotty Gottleib Arnst made a comment to her that they should rob Robert when he saw the amount of money he had in the safe, but she chose to not confront Scotty Gottleib Arnst or warn Robert about what may or may not happen. The internet woman decided to take no action at all to help prevent this crime from happening.
In College Station, Texas, Scotty Gottleib Arnst would be wanted for attempted murder along with being wanted in Plano, Texas for a drug-related shooting of two people back in Indiana along with auto theft.
After, he brutally killed Robert Gene Vick, Scotty Gottleib Arnst would flee to his family’s home back in South Dakota.
It was not until December of 1996, when Scotty Gottleib Arnst sister and mother moved from Dallas, Texas area to Millbank, South Dakota. This is when Scotty Gottleib Arnst, who was 19 at the time decided to stay behind and live with the woman who Robert would soon meet online.
Scotty Gottleib Arnst would just leave his family’s home in the state of South Dakota with his sister’s boyfriend and his sister, when the local police officers who were armed with his arrest warrant pulled over their vehicle.
Scotty Gottleib Arnst was armed with his semi-automatic pistol and he jumped out of the vehicle and ran. Ultimately Scotty Gottleib Arnst would slip and fall right in the snow. When this happened, he lost grip of his semi-automatic gun.
The police officers would then be able to tackle him to the ground and officially apprehend him. Police then would discover that Scotty Gottleib Arnst also had a gunshot wound on his leg.
Scotty Gottleib Arnst sister decided to never ask him about the wound on his leg because she really did not want to know what happened there. Scotty Gottleib Arnst sister would go as far to say that her brother did not resist arrest and did not pull out his semi-automatic pistol, he only got out of the vehicle and ran because he feared the police officers.
All the items that were taken from Robert’s home would officially be recovered when the local police officers went through and search the home that Scotty Gottleib Arnst was staying at in Millbank, South Dakota.
Since the police officers would find that Scotty Gottleib Arnst robbed Robert and murdered him, the charge would officially be upgraded from murder to capital murder. This meant that Scotty Gottleib Arnst could get the death penalty in this case.
Scotty Gottleib Arnst fingerprints were found all over Robert’s safe that was located inside of his home.
Investigators would also find Robert’s spare bed had been slept in. The investigators could only include that Scotty Gottleib Arnst might have asked Robert if it was okay with him, if he can spend the night, which would allow Scotty Gottleib Arnst a way in when he wanted to officially murder Robert. Of course, since Robert was such a trusting individual, he agreed to let Scotty Gottleib Arnst to stay the night as well, which would explain why there was no forced entry.
Ultimately, Scotty Gottleib Arnst would not accept the plea bargain that he was offered by the prosecutors. In November of 1998 the jury selection started. The trial was ultimately scheduled to begin on November 30.
It really did not sink in until the fifth week of the jury selection, when Scotty Gottleib Arnst really realized that the chances of him getting the death penalty was extremely high. This is when Scotty Gottleib Arnst decided it was best for him to plead guilty.
Ultimately Scotty Gottleib Arnst would be giving a life sentence. Scotty Gottleib Arnst would have to spend at least 40 years in prison before he will be eligible to go up on the parole board.
Under the plea agreement that Scotty Gottleib Arnst had with the prosecutors, Scotty Gottleib Arnst will not be permitted to appeal his sentence for a lesser sentence.
Victim Impact Statements
In the state of Texas, the victim survivors and the crime victims can make victim impact statements to the perpetrators during the sentencing phase.
In the victim impact statement that Robert Gene Vick child made to Scotty Gottleib Arnst stated that he (Arnst) is a total and complete coward. How Arnst shot and murdered a defenseless man and the sentence that you will be getting today does no justice for my father (Robert). How you took it upon yourself that day in March of 1998 to be the judge, jury, and ultimately the executioner and how your judgment day has still yet to come.
Robert’s niece, Jeanniene, who was the one that found Robert’s dead body would write in her victim impact statement that, he (Arnst) was just a cold-blooded murderer and scolded Arnst for not paying attention to these statements from Robert’s family.
Robert’s other child, Mona would say in court how great Robert truly was. How Robert had a heart of gold. Not only did he help anyone and everyone, but he also would take in stray animals as well.
Mona would go on to say that you took not only my father (Robert), but you also took a gift from God. Only did you just take my father’s life, but you destroyed the lives of everyone that knew him.