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Victim, Suspect Identified in Deadly Family Fight

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LAWTON, Okla._ 7News is continuing to follow the story of the death of a Comanche County man over the weekend. It has now been ruled a homicide.

The Oklahoma State Medical Examiner said 54-year-old Bart Hewes was killed by blunt force trauma to the throat. On Friday night, Hewes got into a fight in his home with his grandson, 27-year-old Aaron Paddyaker. The two had apparently been at odds with one another for quite some time, and after Hewes approached Paddyaker with a gun, the two began to fight. The fight ultimately resulted in Hewes' death.

Friday night's incident was just another in a long string of trouble Aaron Paddyaker has had. He has a colorful criminal record, including burglary here in Comanche County. He pleaded guilty to two counts of child molestation in Oklahoma County in 2008. 

Neighbors say Bart Hewes was committed to helping his grandson get on the straight and narrow, but unfortunately, it now seems the person he worked so desperately to help is the one with blood on his hands.

"It seemed preventable," said neighbor Rick Garner.

Garner didn't wish to show his face on camera, but he's known Bart Hewes for over 30 years. Garner described him as a wonderful person.

"He had as many friends as anybody could have," Garner said. "Everybody loved him. He was a great fellow."

Garner said Aaron Paddyaker has been trouble his entire life, and everyone on their quiet street knew it. He said Hewes just couldn't turn his back on his grandson.

"It's a shame that not all families have, but families sometimes have troubles," Garner said. "They were very forgiving people."

Just three weeks ago, neighbors said they heard sirens come up the street and stop at their house. They thought for sure problems were solved after that night. Just a few weeks later, they realized they weren't.

"It was inevitable that it was going to happen," Garner said. "Things were coming to a powder keg. Bart and I talked about it, how much trouble it was to raise kids that don't want to be raised."

Now Bart Hewes' wife is left to pick up the pieces and live with the reality that their own grandson is responsible for ripping their family apart.

"It's a major burden on her knowing that they were doing their best to get this young man raised, and he had a mind of his own," Garner said.

At last check, the district attorney had not filed any charges. Paddyaker remains in the Comanche County Jail.

Sheriff Kenny Stradley said they will continue to work the case as a homicide. They are still speaking with different witnesses about the situation. Their investigation is ongoing.

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