‘RHOC’: Lauri Peterson Says Her Son Faces a Long Recovery Ahead

Josh Waring from The Real Housewives of Orange County finally saw an end to his nearly four-year nightmare.

Waring was released from prison after taking a plea for the 2016 attempted murder of Daniel Lopez. Lopez was shot during a drug exchange and ultimately recovered from his injuries. The shooter’s identity was not immediately apparent as several witnesses and individuals were at the scene.

Lauri Peterson and Megyn Kelly
Lauri Peterson and Megyn Kelly | Nathan Congleton/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images

Waring was arrested for the shooting, but he asserted from the beginning that he did not shoot Lopez. He insisted that Bryan Goldstein, a known government informant shot Lopez but Goldstein was not named in the case. Waring’s lengthy ordeal behind bars included a case against the government for listening in on his private phone calls. He was also brutally attacked by another inmate.

Waring has significant work ahead

Between the trauma in prison and past drug addiction, Peterson knows her son has a long healing process ahead of him. Orange County Superior Court Judge Jonathan Fish told Waring he will need to be extremely vigilant upon his release. “You’ve been a tough guy in jail, now you have to be a tough guy out here with that monkey on your back,” Fish told Waring, the OC Register reports.

RHOC viewers likely remember Waring as Peterson’s teenage son who struggled with addiction. Peterson tirelessly tried to get Waring help but he continued to battle with his demons.

Josh Waring and his lawyer Joel Garson
Josh Waring and his lawyer Joel Garson |Paul Bersebach/MediaNews Group/Orange County Register via Getty Images

Peterson told the OC Register, “We are just ecstatic to have him out of the system. He has been through so much. There will be a long recovery process.” She added, “Josh is very bright, he is very capable. Unfortunately, drugs took him at a very young age.”

Prison left Waring with a ‘broken spirit’

Peterson shared that Waring’s time in jail left him with a “broken spirit,” the OC Register shared. She said the family will continue to focus on dealing with Waring’s addiction.

When Showbiz Cheat Sheet spoke with Waring in late February, he sounded mentally drained. Waring was moved to another facility after his violent attack. However, he was placed in isolation, where he said he went for at least a week without any time out of his cell. “So it’s like, you know, my mental health is just kind of in shambles because I don’t do good in isolation,” he said. “So, you know, the two options I was given is basically, you know, have my life in danger or be safe.”

Josh Waring and Lauri Peterson
Josh Waring and Lauri Peterson | Photo courtesy of Lauri Peterson

Showbiz Cheat Sheet spoke with Waring on a number of occasions. Usually, he sounded energized and optimistic because he was diving into case law to fight on his behalf. He looked forward to the day he could walk free, someday attend law school and pursue a career as an attorney.

However, shortly before he was supposed to go to trial, originally scheduled for March 10, Waring was pushed to the point of mental exhaustion. Waring told Showbiz Cheat Sheet on a number of occasions he didn’t want to go with a plea because he was innocent. However, his attorney, Joel Garson said it is simply time for Waring to move forward with his life. “It’s a compromise,” Garson remarked about the plea, the OC Register reports. “Josh needs to get on with his life and he wants to get out.”