It’s been two months since an Austin city employee was shot in the face while on the job. James Bushner, Sr. is on the mend after the armed robbery and his first order of business is to forgive the man who shot him.
On September 22 at around 5 a.m. in the morning, Bushner, Sr. was working to repair a water meter on Manor Road. Out of nowhere a man armed with a gun appeared and changed Bushner, Sr.’s life forever.
“All I heard was a pow and a sting,” Bushner, Sr. recalls. “He said he was going to kill me. I was just thinking about my life.
Bushner, Sr. says he thought those were his final moments. 70-year-old Bushner, Sr. had worked for Austin’s City Water Department for two decades and says he never experienced anything like he did that day.
"I was just doing my job and ran into a couple of crazies," Bushner, Sr. says. "He said if you don't give me your money or wallet I'm going to kill you"
Bushner, Sr. says he slowly backed away from the suspect who pulled the trigger.
"I was standing like this and I was at an angle and the bullet came across here," Bushner, Sr. says.
A surveillance camera captured the two suspects taking off in a car and within days they were found. Police identified them as Rubin Colvin and Vernon Stewart. Both men were arrested and connected to five other robberies in Austin.
Police say Colvin is the one who shot Bushner, Sr. Bushner, Sr. says he is at peace with what happened.
"I was sitting there one day after I got shot and something said forgive that boy." Bushner, Sr. says. "I forgave that boy and I prayed for that boy."
Bushner, Sr. says it took all his strength and faith for that act of forgiveness. "The Lord gave you another opportunity to walk around, so let it loose so you might grow."
And Bushner, Sr. says he has grown, especially spiritually. While recovering he’s been speaking to at risk youths in his church and nearby neighborhoods hoping it will make a difference.
Bushner, Sr. says he’s thankful for a second chance for getting the last laugh.
"He's going to go to jail for a while. I'm still up here walking around. Ya understand? And the sad part about the whole thing is he didn't get any money. Didn't get no money. I aint got nothing," Busner, Sr. says.
Both Rubin Colvin and Vernon Stewart are still behind bars facing a long list of robbery charges. Colvin is also facing attempted capital murder.