The Aftermath: Attorney Killed in Family Dispute

Welcome to Aftermath, a portion of our First Line email newsletter where Attorney Anthony L. DeWitt walks you through a real-life self-defense incident and shares his key takeaways.

Attorney Killed in Family Dispute

We won’t always agree with all of our family members, but it is important to practice de-escalation and calming techniques before things get too heated.

According to local news, Indiana attorney Donald Francis was involved in a dispute with a family member. The family member retreated outside. Francis went to the family member, who was sitting in his car. Francis then pointed a firearm at the person in the car, who responded by pulling a firearm from under the seat and shooting Francis once in the chest.

Independent witnesses indicated Francis was the aggressor. No arrests were made, but the case will be reviewed by the prosecutor.

How do you stay calm during family arguments? Are you prepared for possible disagreements during the upcoming holidays?

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Family disagreements and arguments are normal everyday occurrences. We have to stay level headed in these situations so we can avoid tragedies like this one.

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There is a chasm between losing your temper during an argument with a family member, and chasing after the family member with a gun. This incident is definitely out of range of normal for family disputes.

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:zipper_mouth_face:

is that really happening? There is the reason we call it FAMILY!

To be honest… I even have no idea how to answer the OP question… :astonished:
Looks I have a weirdo Family :relaxed:

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I’m sure some people have psycho family members like that - thankfully I don’t. If I did, they certainly wouldn’t be invited to my home, or my town or state, if I could help it. Nor would I get together with them for any reason. That would be the first de escalation method.

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My oldest son, some how, took the far left pill. He for some reason can’t seem to control himself when he gets around the rest of us. I, as dad, finally had to lay down the law, “You will not come around here and purposely cause arguments pertaining to your political leanings!”. “We disagree with you, we will not change your mind and you won’t change ours.”. He choose to stay away from our family Christmas dinner one year because he didn’t feel comfortable being the only “smart guy” in the room. Since then, some how, he seems to have picked up on the importance of family and the fickle nature of politics. So now, he just smiles when I call him my “Leftwing Pinko Son”.

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And do you smile when he calls you his “Rightwing Fascist Dad”?
Jokes which don’t play well in both directions are not jokes.

Me, I would probably just continue to stay away, because — Why? As with the case at hand, deescalation is the better part of valor. But different families play the dynamics differently.

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Come on! Can we be real about this? IF it isn’t my way, you are not right! Do you walk a perfect line? Can we call you Jesus? A point of view is a perception. Just like the eye witnesses of an accident, each story varies from person to person and each and every one of us has our view points.
I have always said, Not everybody can be a United States Marine! It isn’t for everyone and not everyone has the same view points. I respect other branches of services and the job they do as we should respect other individuals opinions.

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He calls me a “Gun Tottin, Right Wing, Anarchist”

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Sounds about right. :slightly_smiling_face: Not that it’s anyone else’s business. :us:

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I’ve had some “spirited” debates in my house over the years but nothing to the point that would require me to pull or point a gun. I can’t think of ANY conversation that would get me to that point with family or for the most part anyone else.

Folks nerves lately are just a little too raw and the times are not looking like they will get any better. There will be a whole lot of stupid in the coming future lets all just take a step back from the edge.

Cheers,

Craig6

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I’ve been around some, I won’t call them weirdos or psychos, “troubled” folks and the key for me is to avoid having conversations with them.

When trapped, I don’t waste time. I use my skills in tickling other people’s ears to deescalate and,
“Hey, who brought that pecan pie?”
Woosh! I’ve refocused the conversation and extricated myself from a miserable situation.

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You know what I miss? The days when people were expected to have a certain amount of self control and perspective when it came to disagreements. Best to avoid the situation if at all possible, but if you can’t then state your case. Yell if you can’t control yourself, curse if you can’t think of anything intelligent to say, walk away when you reach your limit. If you reach the point of instigating violence, leave immediately and seek help.

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Stories like this one remind me that firearms and alcohol, or any mind altering substance, can not be mixed. I’m not sure anyone was in an altered state but can’t imagine a sound mind pulling a firearm for such trivial reasons. A means to avoid death or bodily injuries alone. It seems the man retreated from the argument. Maybe he went to the car to grab the gun and had it in his hand as the aggressor approached. No on will ever know. Either way, if it weren’t a gun, it would have been something else. This is a scorned relationship.

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I wouldve just walk away, its not worth it,

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Welcome to the family @Julio_Alex and you are in the right place at the right time.

OOOOh! A defender of truth justice and the American way. :joy::rofl::relaxed::wink:
So that’s how it is, you insult him and he complements you. :rofl::joy::rofl::joy:

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If lawyers killed each other doesn’t that make America a better place. No , it is sad even if it is a criminal protecting dirty attorney that get thugs out of jail. .

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useofforce.training

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@Thomas566 and @David1291 Welcome to the community, we are glad to have you here. :us: :us:

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