SPRING LAKE, N.C. — A 79-year-old North Carolina man suffering from dementia is in jail on murder charges after shooting his wife and caretaking daughter, authorities said.
Bobby King killed the two women Thursday, then called 911 and waited for officers outside his family’s home in Spring Lake near Fort Bragg, Police Chief Troy McDuffie told media outlets.
King’s 84-year-old wife, Dorothy, and his 55-year-old daughter Cynthia both died a short time later at the hospital, authorities said.
Family members gathering at the home told reporters that Bobby King served in the Army, but had been in declining mental health in recent years.
“Although he suffered from depression and mental illness and dementia, he will always be remembered to me as a very good grandfather,” Karen Evans said.
Dementia is a brain disorder that can alter personalities and cause delusions and paranoia, according to the Alzheimer’s Association website.
The association recommends removing or disabling guns from homes of dementia patients because the disease can alter their perception of reality, like making them think a family member or caregiver is really an intruder.
Spring Lake officers had been called to King’s home in July, after Dorothy King said her husband was threatening her after accusing her of stealing her property, McDuffie said.