Maricopa County Sheriff's Office responded to a shooting and upon arriving at the scene found an unusual suspect was responsible for the shooting. The shooter was a 92-year-old woman who decided to shoot and kill her own son because he wanted to take her to an assisted living home. Deputies responded to a home near Palisades and Saguaro boulevard for a disturbance call around 10 a.m. Monday.
When MCSO deputies arrived at the scene, they found a man who had been shot and was pronounced dead. The home is located about 30 miles northeast of Phoenix where deputies found a 72-year-old gunshot victim, a witness to the shooting, and the suspect. 92-year-old Anna Mae Blessing had been contemplating her son's intentions to move her into an assisted living facility for several days. An official statement from MCSO said:
"Blessing retrieved two pistols and concealed them in the pockets of her robe then confronted her son in his bedroom. During the confrontation, Blessing stated that she removed the handgun and fired multiple rounds striking and killing her son. She then pointed the gun at her son’s girlfriend and the two struggled over the weapon when it was dislodged from her hand. Blessing retrieved the second handgun and attempted to point it at the girlfriend, who knocked it from Blessing’s possession. The girlfriend contacted MCSO who responded and ultimately took Blessing into custody."
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When deputies arrived at the scene they escorted Blessing out of the apartment and while doing so heard her mutter, "You took my life, so I'm taking yours." Blessing also reportedly said that she intended to kill herself after killing her son but did not have any other guns to use. Detectives are treating the investigation as a domestic violence homicide and say that there are no further suspects.
Court documents revealed that police have been called to the home in the past for a verbal altercation between Blessing and her son. The two firearms were apparently gifts from her late husband back in the 1970s. Sheriff Paul Penzone said, "It is always concerning when domestic issues escalate to violence or tragic outcomes. They are often isolated and neither predictable nor preventable."
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Blessing was booked into jail on one count of murder in the 1st degree and one count of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon as well as one count of kidnapping. Bail is set at $500,000 cash bond and she is due in court for a preliminary hearing on July 13.
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