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Wednesday, October 11, 2017 1:00 am

Man accused of hitting family

Fled in minivan after drunken attack

JAMIE DUFFY | The Journal Gazette

When her husband drinks, his wife said, he is a “totally different person.”

That was allegedly the case Saturday when Gary Jeffries, 55, of the 7600 block of Regina Drive, was arrested about 10:30 p.m. and charged with seven felony counts of domestic battery, a misdemeanor for driving while intoxicated and another misdemeanor for resisting law enforcement.

The problem started about 4:30 p.m. when Jeffries started drinking, according to court documents. About 9:15 p.m., Jeffries got into an argument with his wife fueled by the fact that he had left several times during the evening to go to the liquor store to get more alcohol, she told police.

Just after the argument, the wife's two daughters, who had arrived with their children, heard Jeffries threaten his wife, court records said.

First, he struck his wife in the upper lip with a closed first. Then one of her daughters stepped up to defend her mother and was struck in the forehead and pulled to the ground by her hair. Jeffries, 6 foot, 3 inches and 320 pounds, then landed on top of her, court documents said.

The second daughter went to the victims' aid and was struck on her right arm. Then Jeffries got up off the ground, picked up the keys to the car and left, court documents said.

Jeffries was seen by witnesses about 10:30 p.m. driving the wrong way on East Washington Boulevard. Firefighters from the Fort Wayne Fire Department saw him hit the curb, court documents said.

Jeffries refused to move from his Dodge Caravan. After officers used a stun gun on him, he pulled back into the car until he was finally subdued, court records said.

Jeffries needed support to exit the vehicle. His speech was slurred, his shirt was ripped and he refused to cooperate and take a Breathalyzer test, court records said. Inside the car was a partially consumed bottle of Remy Martin cognac.

Jeffries was being held at the Allen County Jail in lieu of $26,500 bail, according to a jail spokesman.