Family Law

Slain Divorce Lawyer Represented Ex-Wife of Dead Gunman, Had Expected to Retire from Practice Today


A 62-year-old divorce lawyer reportedly shot to death in his Yuma, Ariz., law office this morning represented the ex-wife of the man authorities say was responsible for five fatal shootings in and around the city today.

Jerrold Shelley was in the process of packing up his law office, expecting to retire from practice at the end of the day, when he was slain by a man authorities have identified as Carey Hal Dyess, 73, reports the Associated Press.

The ex-wife, who is not identified by name, is believed to be among the four other slain victims, reports the On Deadline blog of USA Today. A fifth individual was wounded by the gunman before he reportedly committed suicide.

The AP says an Arizona judge issued a protective order in 2006 concerning the Dyess divorce case. He had been divorced four times previously in Washington state.

Attorney Amanda Taylor was a friend of Shelley. She described him as a dedicated family man who was very kind to others and well-respected in the community and said she was “just sick” about his death.

“This is very frightening,” she told the news agency. “You know, family law, that’s some of the most dangerous law to practice because it’s so emotional.”

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