What the evidence shows

Louis T. Stanback Jr., 53, says that his shooting of his stepson was an accident. He allegedly stated to police that he was arguing with his wife of 16 years, and he got a gun to warn her off. Allegedly she grabbed his arm and the gun went off, the bullet striking and killing her 21 year old son Robert Luea.

However, allegedly his  wife disputes this account by saying that she was in another room when  the shooting occurred. A doctor at the emergency room has also told police the gun was touching or nearly touching the stepson's head when the gun went off.



People who commit crimes will often explain the events in the way that will leave them in the best possible light. One of the ways they do that is by "distancing" themselves from the events. It wasn't "his" fault, his wife grabbed his arm. And sometimes they even believe their own statements, as they are often in a situation where they adrenaline is high, and while adrenaline is great for "fight or flight" it tends to leave some gaps or distortions in the memory.

At one time a situation like this would result in a great defense in a murder trial. It would come down to a he said/she said and be left up to the jury to make a decision as to which one they believed.

However, there has been a lot of studies of forensics. They have gotten good at interpreting the events of a crime scene through studying the evidence available at a crime scene and on a victim and suspect. Fortunately, we no longer have to depend on "he said/she said" so much.  



  1. April 10, 2006 at 6:20 pm

    Thank goodness for that….for both sides….if intentional or by accident. Like you said…with forensics these days….it is hard to argue with the facts.

  2. April 10, 2006 at 6:22 pm

    Thank goodness for that….for both sides….if intentional or by accident. Like you said…with forensics these days….it is hard to argue with the facts.
    He had no business getting a gun out to begin with….I can’t help but doubt his story.

  3. April 10, 2006 at 7:06 pm

    I have to agree with you. When I learned to shoot, I was told. Never show a gun, unless you know you can and are going to pull the trigger. When I hear the word gun and accident used in the same sentence, I always remember that.

  4. April 11, 2006 at 3:23 am

    I did not mean for my above comment to duplicate. (sorry)
    You are right…that is what I was raised to know too…”if you get a gun out…chances are…. you are planning on shooting it.”

  5. Lilo said,

    April 11, 2006 at 3:50 am

    My grandfather was a big gun person, so we commonly heard things along the lines of what you and Suzie stated. His motto went sort of like this:
    If you hold a gun, plan to aim it,
    If you aim a gun, plan to shoot it
    If you shoot a gun, plan to hit what you aimed at.

    So, at least for me- it’s hard to believe all these accidental shootings.

  6. April 11, 2006 at 4:00 am

    I think your GF was a wise man Lilo. Maybe we ought to have that printed up and pass it around. I heard something similiar also, but the one I heard kinda had something like, if you shoot it, make sure you kill it so that you don’t have any contradictions to your story. However with forensics these days, your story better match the evidence, as this guy is finding out.

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