Doug Lewis was a Lawrenceville, Georgia, divorce lawyer who authorities say was killed by the ex-husband of one of his clients.
The suspect is Allen Tayeh. Authorities believe he set fire to Lewis' law office after killing him, police said. According to his obituary, the murder occurred on December 7, 2022.
The Lewis family law firm website says: “I will give you the personal attention you deserve, the trusted advice you need, and I will fight to protect your best interests so you can move forward with your life. “
Tributes poured in for Lewis on social media. A woman wrote on Facebook:
I can't tell you how many times I've thought about Doug Lewis, his wife and his children over the last few days. This was such a senseless crime and it just breaks me to know that such a good family man was treated in a way that I still can't understand. I actually knew him personally over two decades in various capacities: as a lawyer, as a father who I often saw at the school where I taught coaching one of our kids in little league… In every role I knew him, it was Art. How someone could carry so much hate within themselves to commit such a devastating act is incomprehensible to me. I know this family can certainly use prayers ❤️
Here's what you need to know:
1. Lewis was shot to death in his law office by a client's ex-husband, authorities say
According to court and police records obtained by 11Alive News, the motive was “a contentious divorce case.”
Lewis, a “popular, devout lawyer from Lawrenceville,” was shot in his law office, which was then set on fire, the television station reported.
The suspect was the husband of one of Lewis' clients, whom he represented in the couple's divorce, the television station reported.
2. Lewis was remembered as a devout Christian and a “dedicated family man.”
Lewis' obituary describes him as a devout Christian and family man:
Doug was a devout Christian, loved the Lord and was a member of Hamilton Mill United Methodist Church where he volunteered at HMUMC's The Food Pantry. His faith was at the center of everything he did and we are grateful that his walk with Christ was strong. Doug, a devoted and loving father and husband, took the opportunity to let them know how proud he was of them. He loved nothing more than spending time with family and friends and making memories, whether at home, on the ball field, at a concert or at the beach.
Those who were fortunate enough to know Doug know that he was a dedicated family man, a considerate and caring son, a beloved brother, a loving and dedicated uncle and brother-in-law, and a funny and kind friend. Doug coached youth sports from 2003 to 2019, including baseball, soccer, basketball, softball and lacrosse. Doug was well liked and respected by many. A loud and proud fan of the Georgia Bulldogs, WVU Mountaineers, Atlanta Braves, Mercer Lacrosse and Mill Creek Hawks, Doug loved cheering on his favorite teams with friends and family.
Authorities described how “brazen” the murder was.
“It’s pretty bold. It’s kind of out of the blue,” Lawrenceville Police Lt. Jake Parker told 11Alive.
Lewis was alone in his law office when the shooting occurred. According to 11Alive, there was a hearing in the divorce case the following week.
Police found Tayeh nearby, but he was also burned, 11Alive reported, and he had a gun on him.
“He had a firearm with him,” Parker told 11Alive, “a revolver that had spent cartridges in the cylinders… “And there were also gas cans in the area and a smell of gasoline.”
3. Lewis, who was married with three children, practiced family law for 20 years
According to his website, Douglas W. Lewis practiced family law in Lawrenceville, Georgia for two decades.
“Welcome to the Law Offices of Douglas W. Lewis. For over 20 years, I have successfully represented clients in Gwinnett County and surrounding counties in the following cases: Divorce and Family Law, Custody/Parenting Time/Visitation, Child Support and Alimony, Modification and Contempt, Credentials and Paternity, and Adoption.”
My philosophy is to treat you with the same care and respect as I would a member of my own family. I am committed to providing a high level of personal care and attention to every aspect of your case until resolution. I will work closely with you and provide you with individualized support to resolve your legal challenges efficiently and cost-effectively.
His obituary states that Lewis, 55, was survived by his wife of 29 years, Becky, and their three children.
The obituary says:
Doug was born on June 28, 1967 in Charleston, West Virginia and grew up in Nitro, West Virginia. Doug attended West Virginia University, where he met his wife, and earned a BA in Political Science and a Doctor of Laws. A respected and successful attorney, Doug has practiced law in Gwinnett County and the Atlanta metropolitan area since 1992. He was a member of the Gwinnett County Bar Association and the State Bar of Georgia.
4. The death of Lewis, who was praised as an “outstanding” lawyer, has “chilled” the legal community.
The lawyer's death sent a chill through the legal community.
“I am shocked and saddened to hear of the murder of family law attorney Doug Lewis,” one woman wrote on Facebook.
He was killed by his client's husband a few days before the scheduled hearing on the divorce case. The murderer then set fire to his law office. Doug was an outstanding attorney for many years. This news shocked the legal community. Doug didn't deserve to die. In this industry we deal with a wide range of personalities and emotions. None of us expected that. This tragedy is eye-opening. We must take precautions with this practice and certainly Doug's death will force many of us to take serious safety measures to protect ourselves from some of these unstable nuts. It's crazy that no one is safe.
A testimonial from a former customer on his website reads:
Doug Lewis represented me in both a divorce and a custody change and did a simply outstanding job… I've spoken to many people over the years and heard horror stories about what ends up with them when it's all said and done, and After I tell them about my agreement, they seem amazed and want Doug's name and number. Doug is a great lawyer and truly cares about his clients, and more importantly, he cares about the children involved. I would not hire anyone other than Doug for family law matters and would highly recommend him to anyone.
5. Lewis, who graduated from West Virginia School of Law, enjoyed coaching youth sports
Allen Tayeh is accused of murdering lawyer Doug Lewis.
Angry man shoots his estranged wife's divorce lawyer and sets fire to law office where victim is located, authorities say https://t.co/9B7LUWTGmM via @lawofficer
— Jim McNeff (@JimMcNeff) December 13, 2022
Lewis' website bio states: “Doug earned his bachelor's degree from West Virginia University and graduated with a Doctor of Laws from West Virginia University in 1992.”
Doug has been a Georgia resident since 1992 and practices law in Gwinnett County and the Atlanta metropolitan area. He is a member of the Gwinnett County Bar Association, the Family Law Section of the State Bar of Georgia and the Georgia Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. He is admitted to practice before the Georgia Court of Appeals and the Georgia Supreme Court.
In addition to cases in Gwinnett County, Mr. Lewis has successfully represented clients at all levels of the Georgia court system in the Atlanta metropolitan area and beyond.
Doug enjoys coaching youth sports, participating in outdoor activities, and spending time with his family and friends.
CONTINUE READING: The University of Idaho students murdered in Moscow, Idaho