Family involved in plot to kill father made dramatic 911 calls

Mother and son charged in conspiracy to kill father. (WNCN)

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – Documents and 911 calls paint a clearer picture in what Wake County authorities are calling a murder plot.

Tammy Franklin, 47, and Steven Franklin, 23, both of Raleigh, are accused of conspiring to murder Donald Franklin.

Wake County Sheriff Donnie Harrison said Donald Franklin called authorities Oct. 31 and said he had been assaulted by Steven Franklin at the family’s home at 6825 Greywalls Lane.

An arrest warrant alleges Steven Franklin assaulted his dad with “a kitchen paring knife with a 4-inch blade.” Franklin was charged with assault with a deadly weapon following the incident.

Mother and son charged in conspiracy to kill father. (WNCN)
PHOTOS: Mother, son charged in conspiracy to kill father

However, in 911 calls, the mom and dad give different accounts of what happened. Tammy Franklin tells dispatches her husband was the one who pulled a knife on them.

“He had the knife and my son was trying to get it from him,” Tammy Franklin said. “It cut [Donald’s] finger and now he’s going crazy.”

In a 911 call the next day, Donald Franklin told dispatchers he was never assaulted, but claimed the son pushed him down the stairs and he did not want to press charges.

“He said he won’t do that no more,” said Donald Franklin. “He said he was sorry and I accepted his apology.”

However, a week later, on Nov. 7, Donald Franklin filed a domestic violence protective order and claimed Steven Franklin attacked him with a knife and fought him off after being cut in the hand.

On the same day, the mother was arrested after she threatened to kill her husband if he didn’t request his son’s assault charge to be dropped, according to an arrest warrant.

The son and mother were then arrested again two days later on Nov. 9, charged with conspiring to kill the dad. Authorities say an investigation into the Oct. 31 assault lead authorities to look at other incidents dating back to May 30. That investigation led to the arrests of Tammy and Steven Franklin, the sheriff said.

Karl Knudsen, Steven Franklin’s attorney, claims his client is not the type of person who would conspire to kill his father. He said Steven Franklin was about to earn his masters from East Carolina university and had just accepted a job in Washington, D.C., at a top accounting firm.

“He had a very bright future ahead of him,” said Knudsen. “He had absolutely nothing to gain and everything in the world to lose.”

On Tuesday, Tammy and Donald’s daughter, Savannah, 19, told WNCN her father abused her, along with Tammy Franklin and Steven Franklin, for years.

“My dad was real abusive to me, my brother and my mom,” Savannah Franklin said. “Domestic violence abuse as in verbal, physical and sexual abuse.”

When asked if that abuse was directed towards her, she said, “Yes.”

Savannah Franklin went on to say she had no idea where her father is and she had to file a restraining order against him Monday.

She said her parents have been married for 27 years but Tammy Franklin was going to leave her husband due to the abuse.

A Wake County court clerk said Donald Franklin filed a restraining order against his wife and son Monday morning.

Four hours later, Savannah Franklin came to the Wake County courthouse with her grandparents to file a restraining order against Donald Franklin.

They were both granted emergency restraining orders.

Warrants show Tammy Franklin helped Steven Franklin escape authorities following the Oct. 31 call by hiding him at her parents’ home in Haywood County.

Tammy Franklin was given a $1.25 million bond. Steven Franklin was given a $1 million bond.

If either post bond, they will be held under house arrest with electronic monitoring. However, Knudsen says he will request for a lower bond for Steven Franklin, saying he cannot afford it and poses no threat to the public.


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