Man Arrested for Strangling His Mother Says He Had Good Reason

A man got away with killing his mother. Until he got drunk and confessed it all as he planned her funeral. Richard Guyton Mathews, of Palm Coast, Florida, allegedly strangled and then fed his mother an overdose of sleeping pills, killing her. No one suspected this was murder, and Mathews was free to begin planning his mom's funeral. But apparently his guilty conscience couldn't take what he had done, and after getting drunk, he reportedly confessed his crime to the mortician. However, there is one major twist.


After the grieving son showed up at the funeral home "highly intoxicated," he reportedly confessed that his 88-year-old mother hadn't died of natural causes after all, but that he had killed her. Horribly, he said he had tried to strangle her but thought it didn't work, so he gave her sleeping pills.

The alarmed funeral undertaker called police, who then ordered an autopsy. The woman was found to have died in exactly this way -- sleeping pills and strangulation.

The man had gotten away with murder -- but couldn't handle it. Why? Could it be because ... he didn't really want her dead?

Although Mathews confessed to killing his mom, he said he was doing it to be a good son -- because she requested it. Apparently she had asked him to do it a few days before he did -- because she was "going downhill and tired."

Neighbors said the son lived with his mother, who was in poor health and on an oxygen tank, and took care of her. Mathews said he did not want to kill his mother but felt he should do what she asked.

Ugh, what a terrible story. Terrible if it's not true, terrible if it is. Assisted suicide is legal in only four states in the U.S. And none of them are Florida. If this woman really did want to die and did ask her son, that was a terrible burden to place on him. I actually did have an elderly relative ask me to help him die, and I told him no. One, I could not do that. Two, I didn't want to go to prison. And that is exactly where Mathews may end up.

On the other hand, we only have Mathews' version of events, so who knows if this really was something his mother requested. If anyone ever asks you to help him or her die, just say no.

Do you believe him? Have you ever had anyone ask this of you?


Image via Palm Coast Police

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