An 80-year-old Oklahoma man faces a first-degree murder charge after police say he allegedly shot his wife while she slept, fearing he could no longer manage her debilitating dementia.
Midwest City, Oklahoma, police responded just after 3 a.m. Monday to a 911 call from Royce Davis, who they say claimed he shot his long-ill wife of more than 50 years and planned to turn the gun on himself, KFOR reported.
Authorities confirmed Davis’ wife, 77-year-old Dorothy Davis, was found in bed with a gunshot wound to the head and later died at a local hospital.
Midwest City Police Chief Brandon Clabes told KOCO Royce Davis called for assistance because the shot did not kill his wife immediately.
“She was still breathing. He was concerned about her welfare,” Clabes told the station.
According to police, Royce Davis later explained his wife suffered from Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, and he could no longer take care of her. Negotiators did, however, manage to convince him over the phone to disarm himself, exit the home and not follow through with his original plan to kill himself as well, KFOR reported.
“I think the only thing that changed the scenario was the fact that when he did shoot her, it didn’t kill her instantly,” Clabes told the station, adding, “So he was still concerned about his wife. They had been married 55 years. It was sad that he felt like this was the only option.”
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