“My son was a happy son, a happy son,” says Mike Butcher, dissolving into tears. His 23-year-old son, Mylik Butcher, was killed Sunday afternoon by a man police say was angry about Butcher’s alleged involvement with the mother of his children.
“For somebody to shoot somebody in the side and walk over them and straight up shoot them 4 more times? Like an execution,” added Butcher, with tears pooling in his eyes. “You tell me that guy didn’t know what he was doing? Or he didn’t plan all of this?”
The woman at the center of the altercation, 21-year-old Destinee Franks, worked with Butcher at IHOP. “My son went out there to try and help the girl out,” says Butcher, “and he shot him four times. He just cold blooded kill my son.”
Tadarrius Winters, 22, has been charged with murder. Bail on that charge has been set at $1,000,000. Additionally, a $500,000 bail has been set on the Aggravated Assault charge for wounding Franks.
According to the Arrest Warrant filed in the case, Winters arrived at the IHOP on Sunday afternoon, angry about some text messages and accused Franks of being involved with Butcher.
“It’s the ultimate: if I can’t have you, no one’s going to have you,” says Paige Flink, CEO of The Family Place. Flink says she is “deeply saddened” to still see so many women die trying to escape bad relationships– and that so often others are also wounded or killed. It is important, she says to have a plan.
“I don’t want anyone to stop doing it because it takes help to escape,” says Flink. “We need upstanders, we need people to be able to help victims escape; but, there are safe ways to do it.”
According to Flink, many abuse victims think they can handle the situation alone– and fail to consider risks like the ability of abusers to follow/find them by tracking their cell phones with location services enabled, or through credit card purchases.
In spite of increasing shelter space by 60 percent last year, Flink says they are at capacity and are now tasked with creating safety plans that allow women to “shelter in place”, essentially stay safe in their homes until they can safely escape their abusers.
“We have to talk about the presence of guns when there is domestic violence in a relationship,” says Flink. “A woman is 500 times more likely to lose her life when a gun is present.”
And often that danger extends to those close to the victim.
Meanwhile, family members say 23-year-old Mylik had a heart of gold, and was working two jobs hoping to launch a career as a photographer.
And now, they say, they need answers.
“I don’t know why this had to happen,” says Butcher, “why that guy had to kill him like that?”