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Police: Chicago executive kills self, severely injures CEO

CHICAGO — An executive of a technology company, upset that he was being demoted, walked into the CEO's office downtown Thursday morning and shot him twice before turning the gun on himself, police said.

Tony DeFrances, 59, was found dead at the scene from a gunshot wound to the head. The CEO of ArrowStream, Steven LaVoie, 54, was wounded in the head and abdomen and was in critical condition at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, authorities said.

DeFrances had been told last Friday that he was being demoted as the company was downsized, according to Chicago police superintendent Garry McCarthy.

He asked for a meeting with LaVoie on Thursday morning in his 17th floor offices at 231 S LaSalle St., McCarthy said. The men had been friends for years, police said.

Workers heard shots about 9:55 a.m. Police were called and officers cordoned off the immediate area outside while SWAT team members and other officers rushed inside. They found the two men on the floor

"Apparently he was despondent over the fact that he got demoted," McCarthy said of DeFrances. "It's a workplace violence issue."

McCarthy said there was plenty of security in the building.

"He's apparently a longtime employee. He comes in with a backpack like an employee normally does," McCarthy said. ". . . This is a personal thing."

Lavoie was shot with a 9mm semiautomatic handgun that was recovered at the scene.

Two Chicago police detectives, as well as squad cars from two suburban departments, were parked outside DeFrances' home in northwest suburban Tower Lakes this afternoon. An officer outside said everyone in the home was okay but wanted privacy.

Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.

Police: Chicago executive kills self, severely injures CEO 07/31/14 [Last modified: Thursday, July 31, 2014 9:28pm]
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