DOUGLAS, GA (WALB) - Originally charged with murder, Greg Griffis pled guilty on November 27, 2017 to voluntary manslaughter, in the shotgun death of Thomas Vining, which happened in February.
Judge Andy Spivey sentenced Griffis to 15 years, the first four in prison.
Vining had been ordered to stay away from the residence of Griffis' daughter, Kelli Griffis, but he showed up before dawn one day, banging on her door. Kelli contacted her father, who arrived within minutes carrying a 12-gauge shotgun.
Vining then attempted to leave, and Griffis shot him in the back. Griffis claimed self-defense, but Judge Spivey denied that motion.
Waycross Judicial Circuit District Attorney George Barnhill said the voluntary manslaughter was the appropriate resolution, despite the fact that Griffis shot Vining in the back.
"Voluntary manslaughter essentially means a killing that would be murder, except for a sudden, violent, and irresistible passion that overcomes a reasonable person," said Barnhill.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney John Rumker.
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