The wife of a slain volunteer firefighter is speaking out about the men accused of killing her husband and is asking that people not feel hate towards the men.
This comes on the same day that the district attorney announced she will seek the death penalty against the accused men.
Jalend Daquan Turner, 19, and Khari Dewayne McClelland, 23, are charged with first-degree murder in the death of Marcus Kauffman.
Kauffman was shot in the head during a robbery at his home December 2. Kauffman remained on life support for nearly three weeks after the shooting and died Dec. 20 at Carolinas Medical Center.
On Friday, hours after the announcement about the death penalty was made, Kauffman's wife Maryann pleaded with people on WBTV's Facebook page not to hate the men accused in his death.
"For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins," she quoted from the Bible, Matthew 6:14-15.
"I don't see any exceptions in the bible depending on how terrible the sin is, or how much it hurts me," Maryann Kauffman posted online. "Jesus forgave me, I can forgive them. Thank you all for caring, but please don't feel hate towards them on our behalf. I don't want that, and Marcus wouldn't want that."
Kauffman has been open in the past about her religious views and her faith since her husband's death.
"It was just a couple men and I don't think it was, I don't think it was their plan originally. I don't think they planned to kill my husband," Maryann said in January.
Marcus and Maryann met at a Bible camp in South Carolina three years ago.
"After Marcus did die, I battled a little bit with questions like 'God why did you give me that hope if it isn't going to happen?' And I felt a little bit betrayed, I guess, by God, because I had trusted him so much," Maryann said in her January conversation with reporter David Whisenant.
But Maryann's faith was never broken. She says she felt the love of God in the outpouring of support given to her by so many.
"I've so many times said 'I don't know where I would be' or 'how I would be making it through this without God' because without that hope that he has a perfect plan in this - it would feel completely hopeless," she said. "But I know without a doubt that my God has a plan in this and that he's going to fulfill it and it's going to be beautiful," Kauffman added.
Two other men, 18-year-old Tramel Devon Hart and 25-year-old Michael Dwayne Teasley, are charged with accessory after the fact to first-degree murder.
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