Lufkin Man Shot And Killed During Domestic Dispute - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

06/07/05 - Lufkin

Lufkin Man Shot And Killed During Domestic Dispute

by Ramonica R. Jones

A woman who's lived next door for years says she didn't know Clarence Richards or Rose Barlow. She says she never heard any type of fighting coming from 115 Westmoreland.

"All I know, it's just a woman and a man and they had a little boy, so I don't know what happened to him," said Debbie Vardeman. "They just moved in not too long ago."

Investigators believe Richards was beating Rose Barlow during a fight Monday night. She ran into the bathroom to get away from him.

Richards reportedly kicked in the bathroom door where Barlow was hiding, that's when she shot him with a .38 caliber handgun.

The 51-year-old man was shot in the neck.

"That's all I heard; just a gun shot," Vardeman said. "I didn't hear [anything] else. And then the cops came, the ambulance came, and other people came."

Richards died at the scene. Police arrested and charged 50-year-old Barlow with murder.

Barlow was arraigned Tuesday afternoon on a murder charge. She is in the Angelina County jail on $15,000 bond.

The evidence in Clarence Richards' death has still not been submitted to the district attorney's office in Angelina County, but the D.A. says everyone has a right to use deadly force to defend themselves.

Authorities say that's not a license to kill. Deadly force should only be an option if your life is in immediate danger, and there's no other way to escape a violent, or potentially deadly, situation.

Clyde Herrington said, "Somebody can shoot another person, or stab them, or do whatever it takes to kill them, if they think, 'if I don't, this person right now - not sometime in the future, but right at this moment - is gonna kill me or hurt me really bad'."

Whether or not a person who kills is charged with murder depends on the evidence. If it's obvious a person could have been killed unless they killed first, it's likely they won't face charges.

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