Ryan and Richard Leber Beat Christopher Dukes in His Sleep

richardandryanleber.jpgUpdated – I’ve been in contact with one of the interested parties over the weekend and would have updated this before but as I mentioned in a post yesterday I’ve been a bit under the weather. The update is at the bottom of the post.

I mentioned in my post about Melissa Lightsey that the wedding reception of Ryan Leber was rife with violence. Enough so that it not only led to the murder of Melissa but also the beating of Christopher Dukes, Ryan’s brother-in-law. A beating so bad that he had to have brain surgery afterward.

Christopher is married to Jacqueline Leann (Leber) Dukes, the groom’s sister. The newlyweds and several of the guest at the wedding were all staying at the Holiday Inn in St Augustine and according to the media and police reports it started out because Christopher slapped his wife at some point in the evening. She in turn told her brother Ryan and after everyone had turned in brtoher Ryan and Richard entered the hotel room and beat Christopher. When they realized how badly they had beaten him they pulled him off the bed and had to give him CPR.

The Leber brothers, who run R&R Painting Services in St Augustine, have been charged with aggravated battery in the assault.
Prior to making it private posted on her MySpace blog that “I am so distraught and sick over the murder of Melissa Lightsey. If she had brothers like mine she wouldn’t be dead right now“. 
Maybe not but someone probably would.
Christopher Dukes had to be airlifted to Jacksonville to have brain surgery after the beating and is still in the hospital recovering. The Lebers have both been released from jail on bond.
Updated 12-1-08 From several emails I have received, here’s the lowdown for those of you that actually care. The husband Chris was allegedly not sleeping when he was punched, nor was he actually beaten. I have not gotten any kind of hospital records so I can’t 100% vouch for it’s authenticity but I believe what I have been told and that is that Christopher was punched and an already existing aneurism popped, which is why he had to be life-flighted to Jacksonville. The two brothers were allegedly responding to cries and screams when the entered the room, they were not trying to sneak in.
I know from the perspective of a father that my first reaction as a parent is that if I heard one of my children screaming I would rush right into whatever was going on and try to stop it.
I don’t yet know if charges have been dropped against the Lebers as St. Johns County doesn’t have a lot of their criminal complaints online as do some of the bigger counties such as Orange.

Related Stories and Sources:

http://www.news4jax.com/news/18019441/detail.html
http://www.cbs47.com/mostpopular/story.aspx?content_id=ea062080-2d8a-4563-b9a0-ffd90e8e8c0c
http://www.shadowscope.com/archives/2008/11/melissa_lightsey_was_beaten_and_choked.php
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  • I’ve read this story and find two facts unanswered. Frist, how did the two brothers get into the motel room where Chris was sleeping? Second, where was his wife while her brothers were very nearly beating the life out of him? These two thugs ought to be thrown in prison.

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  • From what I understand his wife let them in. Not 100% sure about that though as someone close to the investigation told me that my information from the police report is incorrect but as they are not willing to give me any different information other than what has been released to the media I am leaving it as is.

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  • Hi. I know for a fact that the brother in law, Chris, was not sleeping when he got punched. He was not “beaten”. He got punched and an already existing anyurism popped. The wife, Jackie, was not slapped. Much more was going on in that hotel room. The brothers were responding to screams and cries when they entered the room.

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  • I appreciate you stopping back by and letting us have this information. Obviously I was not able to get this from the hospital. I hope everything is going better and I will try and update the post when I get home from work tomorrow.

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  • I find the comments made by annon somewhat skeptical. I have learned from Chris’s parents thru mutual friends quite a bit about this incident. I would surely think that his parents having seen him would know the difference between their son being badly beaten or just “punched” as annon said. What benefit is there to this anon writer if the events of that night were to be drastically changed to fit his or her thoughts? I wish there was an opportunity to find out what more the police have discovered went on that night.

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  • How would Chris’ parents know what happened to their son? They were only here for a couple of days and then went on vacation. Chris had a pre-existing anurism…that’s a fact. This “Tom” person who has apparently been in contact with his parents is I guess a friend of Chris’? From what we know about his friends, they are not the most moral of people. They are the kind of guys who thinks that when a woman gets hit, she had it coming to her. Damn hillbillys.

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  • Tom should ask Chris’ parents what evidence they saw that made them think their son got beaten. He had no bruises or cuts from what I saw. Just a huge bruised bubble on the side of his neck consistent with an aneurism. His wife had a black eye when I saw her at the hospital two days later. Chris was in a medically induced comma and on a repirator…again, because of the aneurism.
    Also, there was a witness in the room that was not Ryan, Rich, Chris, or Jackie. That witness saw Chris get punched, not beaten. The people who were there know the truth. Everyone else just wants a piece of the drama.

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  • to Joe and anon I am friends w/ Chis’ parents and I knew Chris several years ago. I don’t know what has become of Chris but I do know his parents are wonderful people. It sounds like most of what they have passed on to their friends is from the police report. If you 2 or maybe the same person have the “facts” of what went on that night then why haven’t you done the moral and ethical thing and reported all that you know to the police. I can’t believe that the St. Augustine police are totally incompetent. My gut instinct says that you persons may know more than you let on but don’t have the guts to do the right thing. My opinion and I am willing to admit I’m wrong if proved otherwise. So come on tell the whole truth but not just here online, go to the police and do the right thing.

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  • I am a close friend of Jackie and Chris’. All the facts have been told to the police. When the police report came out, everyone was shocked at all the fabrications. Nobody knew where half that information came from. I know that Chris and Jackie just want this all to end. Chris’ parents may be wonderful people in Kansas, but they have caused a lot of grief to Chris and his wife and children down here in Florida. I have seen it firsthand. If the whole truth comes out, Chris would be the one to suffer. He could lose his job and cps would take his children away. So please, respect the wishes of Jackie and Chris. If you weren’t there, don’t speculate or listen to gossip from people who don’t know what’s going on.

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  • FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO CALL THE BROTHERS “ANIMALS” …IF THE JACKASS HIT THEIR SISTER THEN HE DESERVED TO BE HIT BACK…AN EYE FOR AN EYE. A MAN WHO HITS WOMEN IS NOTHING, A WIMP AND A JACKASS AND IF HE GETS HIS ASS KICKED THEN HE GETS HIS JUST DESERTS….

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  • Well, I tend to think he might’ve because if the brothers got arrested for aggravated battery against Dukes why would that be? Because they were having fun and it got out of hand? I hardly think so…..also, even “Anon”‘s comment of “If the whole truth comes out, Chris would be the one to suffer. He could lose his job and cps would take his children away.” Why else would CPS take their kids away unless there was some sort of abuse going on? If she is an abused wife she is displaying abused/battered wife symptoms….they stand up and protect their man and children at all costs, which is exactly what she’s doing. There are many conflicting stories. Even so…..it is NEVER ok to beat someone that badly regardless of how much he may have deserved it.

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  • For anyone who still reads this blog I have some pretty big updates. The charges against the two brothers are being ammended to a misdemeaner. After all the real facts have come out at the state attorney’s office, everyone agrees thar felony charges are not only unfair, but wouldn’t even stick if the case ever went to court. That says alot to those who called the Leber brothers “thugs” and “animals”. The detective in charge of this case is very well known to be a joke in the St. Augustine justice community. His lies were all brought to the light. He lied to not only the court, but also to the victim’s family. The good thing that has come out of all this is that Ryan, Rich, and Chris are all making positive changes in their families and lives. All the cruel people that have slandered, name called, lied, and talked about things they knew nothing of should feel ashamed of themselves. They will have to answer for their awful behavior one day and I only hope they are dealt with as harshly as they treated others in this case.

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  • The St. Johns County clerk of courts still hasn’t updated the information in their database to reflect this. Once they do and it shows that the charges were amended (or dropped) I will either update the blog post or delete it entirely.

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  • Nothing can be settled until all the doctors that worked on Chris Dukes get their forms turned in. One of the two main surgeons that worked on his anuirysm is in Haiti on a missions trip for a while. It won’t be finished for at least a few weeks.

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