Skip to main content

Fatal Punch in Bar Fight: Self-Defense or Manslaughter?

We've all heard of these types of incidents happening through the years. Two guys exchange words, it ends up getting physical, and one guy throws a punch and knocks the other out.  He falls, hits his head and dies. That's just what happened between Standford Griswold and Brian Euston last year outside a Wesport, Mo., bar.

Griswold was charged with two counts of involuntary manslaughter in Euston's death, and the case went to court last month.

Yesterday, Griswold was found not guilty on all counts. The investigation and trial focused on the self-defense question. Did Griswold respond appropriately with the punch? Griswold's attorney argued that her client threw the punch in self-defense and never thought he would kill Euston. That argument held up in court.

While many states view things differently based on their laws, it was ruled that Griswold did not commit involuntary manslaughter in this case. So, how do you prevent this from happening to you? Bottom line: It is vital to know your self-defense laws.


While in law enforcement, I received extensive training on the appropriate use of force in all situations; from the classroom to live action role play to real life tactics on the street. Most people that are not in law enforcement or the security field only have what they heard from their buddies, what they saw in an action flick or their own beliefs of right and wrong. This is unacceptable and most definitely dangerous.  If you value your freedom and your right to self protection, you must be up to speed on the law.  Even though Griswold was acquitted, this case was a stark reminder of how easily we can fall prey to poor decision-making. Being ignorant of the laws might just have you standing up when the bailiff says, "will the defendant please rise."


Do the research and train accordingly. What would you do in this situation?

Current Magazine Cover

Enjoy articles like this?

Subscribe to the magazine.

Get access to everything Guns & Ammo has to offer.
Subscribe to the Magazine

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Guns & Ammo TV: Cameras Don

Guns & Ammo TV: Cameras Don't Lie: 9mm vs .45 ACP

The age-old question, 9mm vs .45 ACP. For some, this has been asked and answered already. For others, the debate goes on. In this segment of “Cameras Don't Lie,” competitive shooters Patrick Sweeney and Jim Tarr head to the range to put the vaunted loads on record, and then consider the footage.

Trijicon

Trijicon's New Specialized Reflex Optics (SRO)

The Trijicon SRO is specifically designed for pistol use. The wide field of view and clean, crisp dot makes it easy for users to find and track the dot in both target and competitive shooting applications.

Surefire XSC Micro-Compact Pistol Light: First Look

Surefire XSC Micro-Compact Pistol Light: First Look

Small, lightweight and purpose-built for sub-compact carry guns, Surefire's XSC pistol light takes on EDC illumination segment.

Cameras Don

Cameras Don't Lie: Subsonic 9mm vs. .300 Blackout

In this segment of "Cameras Don't Lie," a subsonic-ammo showdown, 9mm vs. .300 Blackout fired from AR rifles.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

The Swarovski Z5(i) P BT L 3.5-­18x44mm has a unique and versatile multiple-­zero system and an erector assembly unlike any other on the market. The Z5(i) is an excellent choice for an all-­around hunting scope.Swarovski Z5(i) P BT L 3.5-­18x44mm Scope Review Optics

Swarovski Z5(i) P BT L 3.5-­18x44mm Scope Review

Tom Beckstrand - September 09, 2020

The Swarovski Z5(i) P BT L 3.5-­18x44mm has a unique and versatile multiple-­zero system and...

The story of a confederate sniper’s revenge and an exclusive look at his rifle.The Story of Civil War Sniper Jack Hinson and His Rifle Historical

The Story of Civil War Sniper Jack Hinson and His Rifle

Kyle Lamb - January 12, 2018

The story of a confederate sniper’s revenge and an exclusive look at his rifle.

In this segment of “At The Range,” Handgunning Editor Jeremy Stafford and contributor Patrick Sweeney compare the visibility of red and green lasers in outdoor, sunny conditions. Red vs. Green Lasers: Visibility in Bright Light Accessories

Red vs. Green Lasers: Visibility in Bright Light

Guns & Ammo Staff - August 24, 2020

In this segment of “At The Range,” Handgunning Editor Jeremy Stafford and contributor Patrick...

See More Trending Articles

More Handgun

When it comes to ammunition for personal defense, the Winchester Silvertip Jacketed Hollow Point (JHP) is a time-tested, proven round.Winchester Silvertip Ammo Features New Look, Pack Size in 2020 SHOT Show

Winchester Silvertip Ammo Features New Look, Pack Size in 2020

Guns & Ammo Digital Staff - January 28, 2020

When it comes to ammunition for personal defense, the Winchester Silvertip Jacketed Hollow...

Fiocchi continues to expand its product line across the shooting and hunting categories, applying its century-long expertise to create new defensive ammo, such as the recently introduced Blue Guardian line of pistol and rifle cartridges, while taking advantage of manufacturing efficiencies to bring high-quality ammo to the consumer at often lower-than-expected prices.Fiocchi: More Than Shotshells Handgun

Fiocchi: More Than Shotshells

Guns & Ammo Staff - July 24, 2020

Fiocchi continues to expand its product line across the shooting and hunting categories,...

Both brands said they were unaware the other was working on new products for the 5.7x28mm cartridge. It was just happenstance then that the Ruger 57 and Federal's expansion of its commercial line of 5.7x28 ammunition were introduced at SHOT Show 2020. Both are now trending.Ruger 57 and Speer 5.7x28mm Ammo - Trending! Handgun

Ruger 57 and Speer 5.7x28mm Ammo - Trending!

Eric R. Poole - June 16, 2020

Both brands said they were unaware the other was working on new products for the 5.7x28mm...

Winchester remembers those who fought in World War II with its limited-edition Victory Series.Winchester Limited-Edition Victory Series Rifle

Winchester Limited-Edition Victory Series

Dave Emary

Winchester remembers those who fought in World War II with its limited-edition Victory Series.

See More Handgun

Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE Arrow

Buy Digital Single Issues

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Guns & Ammo App

Other Magazines

See All Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Guns and Ammo subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now