Batesville, IN — There will be no charges in a fatal September shooting that occurred in Batesville, announced Franklin County Prosecuting Attorney Chris Huerkamp. According to Prosecutor Huerkamp, the death resulted from a justifiable use of force by the shooter to defend his mother from a violent attack at the hands of the deceased.
On September 7, 2020 (Labor Day), officers from the Batesville Police Department responded to a domestic violence 911 call from an apartment on Arlington Drive shortly after 8:00 a.m. Upon arrival at the scene, they discovered the body of Benny Flannery, 46, with the cause of death being a gunshot wound to the chest. The initial evidence suggested and was later confirmed by the full investigation, that Flannery was shot by a 17-year-old male juvenile resident of the apartment as he was committing a violent attack upon the juvenile’s mother, his girlfriend, in the kitchen area.
In addition to calling 911 immediately, the juvenile and his mother were cooperative with responding officers and investigators. On the day of the shooting, Batesville Police Chief Stan Holt and Prosecutor Huerkamp agreed that because of the strong initial evidence that the shooting was justified, neither the juvenile nor his mother should be further detained or placed under formal arrest.
The completed investigation—including but not limited to 911 calls, witness statements, physical evidence from the scene, and Flannery’s autopsy report—confirmed that the shooting was indeed justified under the circumstances.
But the facts of the case also made quite an impression on the prosecutor.
“This young man’s quick thinking and incredibly brave actions probably saved his mother’s life,” said Huerkamp. “At 8 in the morning on a holiday, he was confronted with an almost unimaginable scene, a violent criminal attacking his mother at knifepoint in the kitchen. It’s easy to say what you think you would do in a situation like this, but no one, especially no high school-aged kid, would ever want to face this in reality. He is a hero. Period.”
It should be noted that Benny Flannery had an extensive criminal history. In fact, he was released from the Indiana Department of Corrections in December 2019 after serving sentences for Robbery, Dealing Methamphetamine, Theft, and Possession of Narcotics. He had also served prison time in the 2000s as a result of previous felony convictions.
For victims of family violence in the Ripley/Franklin County Area, Safe Passage, Inc. can provide resources to help with safety or just someone to talk to 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. They can be reached at 1-877-733-1990 or www.safepassageinc.org. Every service is free and completely confidential.