A southeastern Pennsylvania teenager called 911 early Monday and told dispatchers he had killed his mother a couple of hours earlier.
Jacob Taliaferro admitted to investigators that he stabbed his mother in the chest with a kitchen knife and then strangled her with a rope until he was sure she was dead, reported PennLive.
Then, the 17-year-old told police, he watched TV for awhile before taking a shower and then reported about 5 a.m. that he’d violently killed his mother, Lorrie Ann Demko.
Taliaferro told dispatchers that his mother had been dead for some time before he decided to turn himself in.
He was still on the phone with dispatchers when police arrived, and officers said the teen complied with their orders to come outside through the front door, show his hands and then lie face-down on the ground.
Police found dried blood on the carpet near the kitchen, and a trail of blood led to Demko’s body lying in a bedroom.
A neighbor who described himself as the teen’s best friend said Taliaferro had a problem with his mother, but the friend said he wasn’t sure why.
“I don’t know why – he didn’t want to talk to her,” said friend Bradley Hess. “I tried to talk to him, but he didn’t want to listen.”
The friend’s mother, Brenda Hess, said Taliaferro was a troubled boy.
“He had a lot of problems, but we never would have dreamed he would have gone this far,” she said.
Another neighbor told the Lebanon Daily News that Taliaferro had “a lot of emotional issues.”
“His mother told us he had emotional problems when he was younger,” said the neighbor, who asked to remain anonymous. “He was definitely different.”
Taliaffero lived at his single mother’s home with an older brother and sister, said another neighbor who was not aware the teen suffered from any emotional problems.
“He was maybe a little slower than other kids, but if so it was very mild,” said neighbor Paul Garber. “We didn’t know him that well, really, but I still never would have expected anything like that from him.”
Chris Bailey-Wolfe said her own children used to play with Taliaferro and his siblings, and she described Demko as “an amazing woman” and “mother of the year.”
“I didn’t hear of any problems there,” Bailey-Wolfe said. “Lorrie was a single parent raising three children, and being single and raising three kids would have to be hard. Those may have been the problems she was referring to.”
Taliaferro was charged as an adult with criminal homicide and remains held without bond.
Prosecutors said the teen and his mother were home alone at the time of the slaying, which investigators described as “brutal,” but they haven’t described a possible motive — although they ruled out drugs and mental illness as factors.
“I don’t believe mental health played a substantial role,” said David Arnold, district attorney for Lebanon County. “When you do something like this, obviously something has gone a little wrong in your life.”
Watch this video report posted online by WGAL: