Last week I brought you a story about t-shirts that were being sold to raise awareness of suicide and the scores of family members that alleged fraud, when the shirts they ordered never arrived, and complaints were allegedly met with bullying and social media blocking.
Since the publication of that story, many more people came forward to share their stories, and a vocal few chimed in to say how wrong we were about Amanda and the entire situation.
The only person we never directly heard from was Amanda Nicole or her husband; that changed over the weekend.
Staff Sergeant Daniel Bratten, the husband of Amanda Nicole, reached out to me and offered that I and the El Paso Herald Post take possession of the t-shirts in order to get them to those who are waiting for them.
He also talked with me at length about the entire t-shirt situation, Amanda’s state of mind, and what he says happened.
[Editor in Chief’s Note: Contrary to statements on several online groups and conversations, as of January 22nd, no one has contacted me about the content of either story and Steven’s position here at the Herald Post. The invitation to Amanda to comment directly on this story is still open. Additionally, we continue to receive and archive screenshots of all pertinent conversations from Amanda’s supporters (and herself as well) alleging dishonesty on our part and potential threats. All audio and screenshots in the stories are original and unaltered, excluding the redaction of person’s private numbers and addresses]
To begin with, the offer struck me as odd because of the screenshot provided by Ashley Anderson, where she offered both Amanda and Daniel to take the shirts off their hands and ship them out. Ashley even offered to pay the shipping to get the shirts up to her.
But, at that time, Amanda said no.
In the first voicemail (click here to listen,) Daniel says that they have 500 t-shirts that are not paid for. He wanted us to “get these t-shirts out to people who deserve them.”
Initially, Amanda Nicole purchased 700 tee-shirts from Proper Print Shop in El Paso and she still has, according to her husband’s voicemail, 500 in her possession. That number, however, seems to be fluid.
Last week I spoke with Alan, one of the co-owners of Proper Print Shop, who said that they feel terrible that so many people did not receive their t-shirts.
In fact, Alan and Proper Printing is working out a way to help those people receive a shirt. More on that in a bit.
After listening to the voicemail, I reached out to Staff Sergeant Bratten.
After all the back and forth I’ve had with many different individuals online; as well as a few phone calls from random people that I can only describe as strange attempts at making some sort of threat, I was looking forward to hearing Daniel’s (and Amanda’s) side of the story.
What did Danial have to say? Here is my call with him. And what follows are highlights from that conversation.
“Oh no, sir, cause we had, we had tons of shirts left over that weren’t paid for. So, I mean I have boxes that still need to be shipped out,” Daniel said near the start of our conversation. “So, there’s like probably about, I’m just a guesstimation [sic] here, but I still probably have about 300 t-shirts and sweaters.”
Daniel says that the shirts still in their possession represent orders that were never paid for or were simply not wanted. Yet, as I look back over the screenshots that have been provided to me, I was left to wonder why those who did pay have yet to receive anything at all.
“See now sir, on that part, that’s completely understood. We definitely have tons of people that we weren’t able to satisfy by getting them there in their shirts in time,” Daniel shared.
“But the gist is that we just did, we ran out of money personally to actually start shipping these things out.”
Yet, from what I’ve been told, Amanda established several ways for people to pay for the t-shirts: Facebook payments, GoFundMe, as well as PayPal. That also doesn’t take into consideration the number of checks and money orders that were mailed directly to Amanda.
As Alan at Proper Printing shared, just the cost of t-shirts meant Amanda would have to pay between $6.50 to $7.50 each. I’ve also been told by several people, in writing both this and the prior article, that Amanda admitted that she underestimated the shipping costs.
“So, we thought we calculated it in there,” says Daniel of the shipping costs. “But like I said when you take a shirt, just one shirt that costs $25 to ship to New Zealand…or um, what was the other places? Just England and stuff like that…But it ends up cutting into a lot of things where you thought you were going to have enough leftover and ended up having to pull out of pocket.”
As a result, Amanda sent a private message to Ashley Anderson explaining that she – Amanda – had calculated the shipping wrong; Ashley appealed to the group they were a part of.
Many people gave money to cover the shipping for themselves, while others gave extra to help cover shipping for those who couldn’t afford it. The shipping, according Ashley, went from an additional $5 to a total of $10. Still, many shirts never showed up.
Daniel said that Amanda, “tries to please everyone and do everything.” He added that while all this is going on, she would have “manic attacks”and ended up in the hospital for both “a heart issue and a spinal surgery.”
Before I started asking other questions, about Amanda and her other businesses and background, Daniel quickly started to wrap up the call.
I did extend my invitation once again to listen to Amanda’s side of this. I also asked why she never responded to my messages to her.
“She’s a little…she’s completely distraught right now and probably not thinking that straight. That’s why I’m just trying to basically go behind her back,” Daniel responded. “But I’m just trying to get this thing done, so it’s not on her head…cause it’s always on her when she does all this stuff.”
Finally, there is the text conversation I had with Daniel where he indicated that he wanted us – the El Paso Herald Post – to take the t-shirts in order to help get them to the people who did not yet receive one.
I reached out to Proper Print Shop and they have agreed to take those shirts. That drop-off was set for Tuesday (1/22,) but was postponed to Wednesday (1/23).
So it appears that there may be an end to this story after all, one where those who ordered shirts may get their shirts.
Once the details are set, and the shirts in possession of Proper Printing, we will provide an update to our readers and those directly involved with the situation.
However, there is a final twist to this story.
Even though Daniel has said – in the call – he is “going behind his wife’s back to make good on the situation and move on.”
Even with this potential ‘happy ending,’ there are apparently some lingering bad feelings about the story and the fallout.
Sometime over the last couple of days, Amanda has allegedly begun to seek out a firearm.
In the screenshot that we’ve obtained from a concerned source (who claims the person in the conversation with them is Amanda) you can see that person asking for a gun. When the other party asks why – the person our source identifies as Amanda – says that everything in my previous article is a lie and that she just needs one.
Normally I would brush this off as nothing more than someone venting, but those comments and the countless others, coupled with a couple of phone calls I have received where I was told I messed with the wrong person; there is some reason to be concerned.
I was concerned enough to call the one of the El Paso Police Department Regional Command Centers where they could only document what I perceive as a threat.
To that end, I sincerely hope I’m the last person that has to go to the police regarding the alleged behavior of one Amanda Nicole.
Editor’s note: A portion of the screenshots below – and the previous story – were either provided by victims of Amanda’s alleged activities or those who are still administrators in groups where Amanda has allegedly made comments.