Teenager shoots mum after being told not to smoke in house: police

A 19-year-old man from Lake Wales, Florida, is charged with fatally shooting his mother on Thursday morning after she told him to quit smoking in the house.

At a Friday press conference, Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said after returning home, Seth Settle’s mother smelled smoke coming from her bedroom when she opened the door. door and told him to quit smoking.

“[As] she closes the door, he shoots her,” the sheriff said during the conference, which was posted online by Fox 5 Atlanta.

In a press release posted on its website, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office said the victim, who has not been officially identified, died at a local hospital around 10:30 a.m. Thursday.

According to the arrest affidavit, Settle told detectives he was sitting in his bedroom when his mother told him to “stop smoking in the house” and walked out of his bedroom. Settle said he pointed a gun at the door and it went off. He said he came out of his room and found his mother unresponsive, so he told another person in the house to call an ambulance, then drove off in a car.

A 19-year-old man from Lake Wales, Florida, is accused of fatally shooting his mother. Above are law enforcement officers on February 2, 2021 in Sunrise, Florida.
Joe Raedle

Judd said Friday that Settle had confessed. “But he’s coloring the event in his best interest. He’s telling us he’s depressed… He said ‘Mom opened the door to talk to me about smoking and I was holding a gun to my head. And she m said to put the cigar out and close the door and the gun accidentally discharged. We don’t believe it.”

In a written statement, the sheriff said: “[Settle] fled without rendering assistance, then he arranged for a friend to dispose of the weapon. These are not the actions of a man who just accidentally killed someone. He knew exactly what he was doing.”

The teenager has been charged with second-degree murder with a weapon, tampering with evidence, discharging a gun in a residential area and faces five counts of giving false information during a ‘investigation.

In response to a request for comment from Newsweek On Saturday, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office said it had no updates on the case.

Children who kill their parents are unfortunately not uncommon.

In another incident in Arizona in January, a 13-year-old boy was accused of stabbing his mother to death during a fight over video games. In another case in Alabama in January, a son allegedly stabbed his mother to death with a sword and also left his uncle with life-threatening injuries. Meanwhile, earlier this year in Minnesota, a woman accused of killing her mother reportedly said she strangled and squeezed her “like a python”.


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