(Photo: REUTERS/Jim Young)
A Chicago shooting resulted in one man critically wounded and another dead after an upset executive came into a private meeting with a gun Thursday. Anthony DeFrances, 60, was upset that he had been demoted amongst recent layoffs, so he shot the ArrowStream CEO and chairman Steven LaVoie twice before turning the gun on himself.
The Chicago shooting took place at the 17th floor of the Bank of America building at about 10 a.m., the Los Angeles Times reported. DeFrances, of Barrington, Illinois, showed up to a private meeting with the CEO and pulled a 9mm pistol out shortly afterwards.
The two men reportedly struggled before DeFrances shot LaVoie in the stomach and then again in the head before shooting himself. Both men were found on the floor of the office unresponsive but LaVoie was still alive and taken to Northwestern Hospital in critical condition, police Superintendent Garry McCarthy said.
Police and SWAT teams were called to the building around 10 a.m. and the fire alarm was sounded. Employees in the skyscraper were only told that an incident had occurred.
"It was a tense atmosphere, everybody was walking around, you wanted more details but they wouldn't give us much," Stefano Freddo, a 10th-floor employee, told the Associated Press.
About an hour later, the alarm was taken off and employees were told what happened.
"Apparently he was despondent over the fact that he got demoted," McCarthy told The LA Times. "They've been undergoing a downsizing. They've demoted a number of people."
DeFrances had joined the supply-chain management company shortly after it was founded by LaVoie in 2000. Both men lived in the same suburb and even became close friends "for years," the Chicago Tribune reported.
So it apparently came as a surprise when the chief technology officer was demoted on Friday along with other people. DeFrances, known to some as "Tony," was a "hard worker," according to one friend.
"He was in on the early train and out on the late train. This was a good guy," George Volland, who commuted with DeFrances, said. "I just want people to know he was not a monster."
Both DeFrances and LaVoie have three children.