Man in father's slaying seen howling from rooftop

Updated:

TACOMA, Wash. - Neighbors and family of a Tacoma man accused of killing his father said he has a history of mental illness and would sometimes stand on the roof of his home howling and screaming.

 

Police said the 29-year-old suspect, Jonathan Meline, walked into the Pierce County Jail with his sister Thursday morning and told officers that he had killed his father.

 

Police went to the family's home at North Ninth Street and Union Avenue in Tacoma and found the body of a man.

 

The victim's sister-in-law, Kerry Morrison, identified the victim as 58-year-old Robert Meline.

 

“Rob was an amazing man, was very loved, a devoted family man, an amazing teacher and it’s just a huge loss to the community,” said Morrison.

 

Officers said it appeared that the victim, who died from blunt-force trauma, was either sleeping or had just woken up when he was killed.

 

Neighbor Mike Spangler said Jonathan Meline has a history of mental health problems, including schizophrenia.  Spangler said he has had to call police in the past when Jonathan Meline was causing a disturbance.

 

“He would be up on the roof howling at the top of his lungs. He would be yelling in the house constantly,” said Spangler.

 

  Robert Meline's sister-in-law says his wife is traveling in Spain with a friend and the family has been trying throughout the day to get in touch with her and tell her what happened.

Jonathan Meline is in the Pierce County Jail.