I went to Dyersville on Saturday evening when we first heard about the shooting at 511 Ninth St. SE. I spoke to the next door neighbors, where David Herman and Jen Fauver left their children before getting that last fateful load of belongings from their apartment. They didn’t want to talk to me because the children — one they had together and two of Jen’s — didn’t know Herman was dead yet.

Gutwrenching situations like this always present a problem for people on both sides of the fence on self-defense.

Here’s what we DO know about what happened: That afternoon, Herman confronted Christopher Leppert, a Dubuque man hired to change the locks after Herman and Fauver were evicted. They punched and shoved each other. The Dubuque Times-Herald reports that Leppert was able to retreat to his car, where his .32-caliber pistol was hidden. Herman, who was not carrying a weapon, jumped into the locksmith’s car. Another fight broke out, and sometime during the second altercation the locksmith shot Herman in the chest, according to the sheriff’s department.

There is at least one more crucial question that still need to be answered in my mind — Did Leppert warn Herman that he would shoot him if he didn’t back off? Situations like this one can be Monday morning quarterbacked to death, but that warning is the real key. Whether you’re pro- or anti-gun, I’m sure this case will turn out to be an interesting one, legally.

In the meantime, read a story about whether self-defense laws have gone too far here. Personally, I would have done the same thing as Mitch Morelli. Who threatens my kid and gets away with it? Not that I have one…

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